IDC today was the latest to publish its numbers on smartphone market shares after the major handset makers released Q1 earnings, and like Gartner, Strategy Analytics and the rest, it underscores the power of Google’s Android platform at the moment: Android OEMs shipped 162.1 million handsets in the quarter, giving the platform a 75% share of total worldwide shipments, while Apple’s 37.4 million devices put it at an increasingly distant second position at 17.3%. Microsoft’s Windows Phone, driven primarily by its partner Nokia (79% of all WP shipments), grew the most of all platforms, with a rise of 133.3%, but that still puts it at a single-digit share, 3.2% on 7 million devices shipped.
That meant that Microsoft has now overtaken BlackBerry, which declined by just over 35% with 6.5 million shipments, ending with a 2.9% market share.
Important to note that IDC specifies that this is devices shipped, not sold. Some analysts have told me that the two are effectively interchangeable terms, but shipped is also potentially a more optimistic figure: it points to how well retailers and carriers think certain models are likely to sell in the quarter ahead. Occasionally these can lag compared to how well certain handset makers are actually doing if a device ends up selling worse than expected.
What “shipped” numbers like IDC’s say is that Android and iOS continue to, more or less, remain the only games in town in terms of how confident sales channels feel about shifting devices, with other platforms relegated to niche status. This is something that companies like BlackBerry are trying to change, as evidenced by a recent deal to extend a $256 million loan to Telefonica for purchasing BlackBerry devices.
IDC’s numbers show that together these two platforms accounted for nearly 200 million units (199.5 million) shipped, up 59% over a year ago. The smaller players are not to be dismissed, though. Not only is Windows Phone the most rapidly rising of all platforms at the moment, but IDC notes that BlackBerry’s BB10 new range have hit 1 million shipped devices this quarter.
But turnaround will only come with that kind of growth being sustained. “Given the relatively low volume generated, the Windows Phone camp will need to show further gains to solidify its status as an alterative to Android or iOS,” writes Kevin Restivo, senior research analyst with IDC.
For the time being, the message to users, and to app developers, is that these are the platforms where you want to be. Considering how key content has been as a route to attracting users to these devices, that will continue to pose a challenge for the smaller players.
As with Strategy Analytics’ numbers yesterday detailing the profitability of different smartphone platforms in the quarter, IDC notes that Samsung is by far the “clear leader” in Android. It notes that it had a 41.1% market share. As a sign of the ongoing fragmentation of players on the platform, no other single OEM had more than a single-digit percentage market share after that, “and an even longer list of vendors with market share less than one percent.” The fact that it’s still “free” to license Android, and relatively easy to modify it for a more custom experience, will mean that it will continue to be the platform of choice for OEMs looking for more revenues from the ongoing boom in smartphones.
As we saw in Apple’s earnings earlier in the quarter, the company’s sales of iPhones are at an all-time high, but in comparison to the growth of the rest of the market, it’s actually off, with market share down nearly six percentage points. There is some feeling that part of this is due to the fact that the platform appears stale compared to all the change going on elsewhere with software and hardware features, news handsets and more. “Although demand remains strong worldwide, the iOS experience has remained largely the same since the first iPhone debuted in 2007,” IDC notes, pointing to a “massive overhaul” that appears to be on the cards with iOS 7.
IDC also notes that over the last year, shares of the biggest platforms have fluctuated, although Android’s current 75% is the highest in a year. Against that, the last time that Android approached 75%, in Q3 2012, Apple’s share was only 14.5% as people held out for a new iPhone model. That shows that Apple’s growth this quarter was at the expense of declines for other smaller platforms.
Nokia has added another device to its burgeoning Lumia portfolio of smartphones today, with the introduction of the Lumia 925: a sleek, PureView-branded handset that will be its first flagship on T-Mobile U.S. At today’s London launch, Nokia executive VP of smart devices, Jo Harlow, sat down with TechCrunch to field a few questions.
TC: Despite all the focus on your camera technologies with the flagship Lumia devices, Windows Phone still lacks Instagram. How much of a blocker is that, what are you doing to get round it and why is it proving so difficult to get this app?
Harlow: Obviously our goal is to brings great apps to the Windows Phone platform. We have a huge amount of respect for Instagram and we continue to work in that direction and in particular with Microsoft, and with apps like Hipstamatic and the ability to share your pictures on Instagram. But the importance of Hipstamatic isn’t Instagram really — it is the great capabilities that Hipstamatic brings and the community that Oggl represents because they’re a community of people who love photography. And so I think in inspiring that world of consumers then that brings attration from others as well.
I would characterise the competition in Android as more of a spec race than anything else… it’s open but that doesn’t make you first.
We worked very closely with Hipstamatic and shared our portfolio with them, we’ve shared our imaging APIs with them, and that’s where we’d like to work with the developers who can bring even more greate experience to our imaging story.
TC: Are you going to be helping to usher in more new camera apps like Oggl or make more of your own new imaging apps?
Harlow: The first thing we’ve done is make our imaging APIs accessible to developers — whether they’re developing imaging specific apps or in other ways could use the camera in their app — that they could get all the way to the performance of the camera itself. If you look at what’s happened with photography with mobile devices and just how we use pictures you see that what is today is unlikely to be just what is in the future. It’s constantly evolving — now hundreds of millions of pictures are uploaded every day just to social networks. Yes there are imaging specific apps, and there will be more imaging specific apps and communities in the future, but all communities have a deep relationship with pictures because that’s part of the social fabric of our lives these days. And I dont think that changes, that only gets bigger and bigger.
TC: Is the original 808 PureView 41MP technology a bit of a unicorn now with the Lumias? Or are you working toward it with each iteration of the devices? Or is this something that you think you might never have because you’re going for thinner devices?
Harlow: I can’t comment about our portfolio coming in the future, but what I will say about the PureView technology that we developed that uses a 41MP sensor is that it delivers a consumer experience in terms of zooming after you’ve taken the photo. That is a phenomenal experience. That’s something that we think is very interesting to continue to pursue.
TC: So you’re not ruling it out?
Harlow: I’m not ruling it out.
TC: You talk about how you have been able to differentiate on Windows Phone — with hardware design, camera technology and so on — but why couldn’t you have done that on the Android platform? The reality is that Android is dominant, and Windows Phone is very far behind.
Harlow: The dominance of Android is led by Samsung. I think you can see the difficulty that others have in standing out from Samsung even when they have really good devices. I think first of all it comes down to partnership and the partnership that we’ve had with Microsoft in terms of bringing new experiences to the platform as well as our own differentiating experiences. We did not believe we could have that level of partnership with Android — and that’s a key difference.
TC: But Android is open. You can do what you want…
Harlow: To a certain degree yes. But I think I would characterise the competition in Android as more of a spec race than anything else and so there is one partner who is the development partner for any new release of Android and everyone else come some time later, so it’s open but that doesn’t make you first and that doesn’t make you necessarily the most competitive.
TC: I know you can’t comment on future roadmap, but what could Nokia bring to a phablet device, i.e. a larger form factor smartphone, if it decided to play in that space?
Harlow: I think the word is ‘experiences’ because as we are investing in great experiences on our smartphone range it’s logical to think that those experiences we would look to take into other types of form factors and make them compatible with each other. Obviously what we would want in any portfolio is that there’s some consistency in the experience that consumers have of a Nokia product.
Nokia is going big on the camera features in its new 925 and 928 Lumia devices, continuing on in its PureView legacy first introduced back when it was still making Symbian devices. Within that it is adding a few key apps to the device — Oggl from Hipstamatic, the slick video sharing app Vyclone and Cinemagraph — but there is still no sign of popular picture-taking and picture-sharing app Instagram.
“We hear the voices on Instagram,” Matt Rothschild, head of sales for Nokia in the Americas, said in an interview, indicating that the company is still working on a deal: “For now, we see great technology complementing Instagram; we are continuing to work on that.”
In fact, TechCrunch understands that Nokia and Microsoft have been working hard on closing an agreement but still there have been no dice. Both CEOs have visited the company, we understand, and have even offered to put up investment reaching into the millions of dollars to create the app. Many (although not all) see Instagram as a deal-breaker, holding back some from making the switch to Windows Phone as their next startphone platform. (This point can be argued against, of course: Android has been growing like crazy, but it only got Instagram around a year ago.) In any case, given how much of a song and dance Nokia is making about its camera features — with its own Smart Camera software leading the pack — you can see why Nokia was so keen on securing the Instagram deal, which also included waging its own viral campaign.
In the meantime, we are getting other things, led by Oggl. Launched only three days ago for iOS, Nokia has secured a partnership with Hipstamatic to put its new app — itself an attempt at a comeback after free Instagram and other apps have stolen Hipstamatic’s paid app lunch — on to its Lumia devices. Because of the existing relationship between Hipstamatic and Instagram, from last March (before Instagram was bought by Facebook), users will now be able to post pictures that they take via Oggl on to Instagram.
(Pictured here is Jo Harlow, EVP for smart devices, who introduced the new 925 and Oggl on stage today in London.)
Nokia plans to take its Smart Camera software, which offers best shot, action shot and motion focus, to other Lumia devices in Q3 later this year. But unlike Nokia’s mapping technology Here, which is coming to many other platforms — this will be staying only on Lumia’s devices.
Published by Rhea Gaur
in category BPO jobs
, Email Marketing
, Google Panda
, Google Penguin
, lumia 820
, Volusion and Shopify
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Freelancer.com, one of the top online job portals for freelancers in the world, has just released a report on growth in hiring across various job categories based on 300,000 jobs posted on its site for Q1 2013. What makes this report interesting are the trends in industries, companies and products reflected from the growth of jobs.
Here are some of the key trends spotted in the report that are pertinent to growing businesses:
E-commerce continues to dominate retail space: Jobs pertaining to E-commerce sites grew by 19% in the first quarter on freelancer.com, confirming that growth in this sector continues unabated. A report on emarketer.com confirms that e-commerce sales (excluding travel and online event sales) grew by an average of 15% over the last 3 years, while overall retail sales growth averaged 5.5%. A significant reason for the growth in ecommerce retail is increased accessibility to e-commerce hosting technologies, as offered by sites such as Magento, Volusion and Shopify. The other reason, of course, is the change in consumer behavior driven by smartphones and tablets. It is estimated that sales on mobile devices or m-commerce, will grow by a staggering 56.5% this year compared to 2012 figures. This trend is an ominous sign for survival of brick and mortar stores that fail to adapt their selling models to include online sales.
Email marketing trumps social media (Facebook and Twitter): While email marketing jobs on freelancer.com grew by 21%, Twitter jobs grew by 18% and Facebook jobs fell by 4%. In other words, for businesses of all sizes, email marketing continues to make sense – it’s basic and gets the job done. A 2012 infographic released by Montate.com confirmed that in terms of driving actual sales conversions email marketing is 10 times more effective than social media.
Outsource your daily workload: Perhaps the most significant trend is the 113% growth in Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) jobs, which includes virtual assistants, customer service and simple back office jobs being outsourced to save time and money by small businesses and entrepreneurs.
3D Printing for offices has arrived: 3D design jobs on the portal increased by 21% thanks to increasing affordability of 3D printers. Until just a few years ago the cheapest 3D printing machine was for $30,000, with the most expensive being $100,000. Today, you can choose from an array of options ranging from $499 to $2,500. Specialized professions, such as those that involve product design and rapid prototyping ( architects, designers, educators, engineers), will find lots of uses for 3D printers. In January this year Nokia released 3D templates that allow users to print Lumia 820 case using a 3D printer.
Other noticeable trends from the survey included rise in SEO jobs as businesses try to cope with Google’s Panda and Penguin updates and a 20% increase in Android development jobs, which soared past those for Apple, which only saw a 11% increase.
The post 50 Fastest Growing Online Jobs: Key Business Trends from Jobs Posted on Freelancer.com appeared first on Small Business Technology.
AT&T customers who took the plunge on Nokia’s Lumia 900 have had to sit idly by and watch Windows Phone 8 supercede the software loaded on their own devices, but they’ll soon be able to experience at least part of what WP8 brings to the table. Nokia announced earlier today via Twitter that the Windows Phone 7.8 update is now available to owners of the one-time AT&T flagship.
Better late then never, as they say.
In case you haven’t been keeping track (after all, that’s what I’m here for), Nokia began the process of bringing Windows Phone 7.8 to the Lumia-owning masses back in February. All that’s really changing here is that the Lumia 900 will get a minor facelift — think (among other things) the inclusion of Windows Phone 8′s oft-updating Live Tiles, improved lock screen security, and the ability to share internet connections. Sadly, since the update is mostly cosmetic, Lumia 900 owners looking to fiddle with some of the new Windows Phone 8-optimized apps that Microsoft and its developer partners have been touting lately will have to wait until they splurge on some new hardware first.
If we’re being honest, those Lumia 900 owners have had their share of issues to deal with — not only were they stuck with a device that could never be updated to Windows Phone 8, early production runs yielded Lumia 900s that just couldn’t consistently latch onto a wireless data connection, prompting Nokia to push out a software fix and offer a credit for affected consumers.
I suspect that a decent chunk of 900 owners will just be glad that the update is finally out there, but their eyes may soon be drawn to an even newer batch of Windows-powered handsets shortly — Nokia is reportedly preparing to show off some new Lumias at a London event in less than a week.