Symbian still rules global OS scene

Symbian still rules global OS sceneNokia may not want it, and a lot of people view it as a relic from a low-tech past, but Symbian nonetheless ends 2011 just as it started it, as the planet's most popular mobile OS.

In fact, not only is it the most popular, but Symbian's market share has actually grown over the past 12 months, and it has been the best-performing platform of all since October.

According to StatCounter, Symbian's current slice of the global OS pie stands at a healthy 33.53%, with iOS and Android following in second and third on 22.62% and 21.77% respectively. Android has been the biggest mover of the year, improving its share to the tune of 50% from January's levels.

RIM's BlackBerry OS is the year's big loser – no surprise there – with its figure dropping from 15% to under 8% at present.

So why do the figures paint a far rosier picture for Symbian than the everyday consensus? Two words: developing markets. In Asia, Symbian is the OS on board 57% of new devices sold, while in Africa that figure is as high as 73%.

As for the UK, iOS is top dog with 40% of the market, which is fully double the 20% figure reported for Android. BlackBerry OS still holds a 33% market share here in Blighty, which suggests all the doom and gloom supposedly surrounding RIM at the moment may be slightly overstated. Then again, with under 7% hold in the US, maybe it isn't.

Oh, and Symbian? Just 2.47% here in the UK, and 4.71% in the States. But before you start thinking Nokia's move to Windows Phone is a no-brainer, the Microsoft platform is still running at under 1% both here and in the US. Third ecosystem? Not yet, it ain't...

Read more about: Symbian

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8 comments

jmarcelino  Dec. 30, 2011 at 19:36

Not convinced by any of this data. Wake me up when you manage to haggle comScore's MobiLens report :)

tom2407  Dec. 30, 2011 at 21:54

Yeah im not too convinced by this either, this shows the stats from other (more reputable)companies; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_share_of_operating_systems#Mobile_devices

jmarcelino  Dec. 30, 2011 at 23:07

Yep those are good sources, unfortunately nothing covering Q4 2011. Maybe soon...

cn5667  Dec. 31, 2011 at 00:08

Why is it so hard to believe?

I've just bought an N8 from Amazon, I have no interest in iOS, Android, WP7 even BB, I assume their are people out there that feel the same way.

matt101101 / MOD  Dec. 31, 2011 at 03:35

It's nothing to do with the western world having no interest in iOS & Android it's the amount of affordable Symbian devices Nokia manage to shift in the developing nations around the world. Symbian's market share in the top 20 richest nations would be far lower.

jmarcelino  Dec. 31, 2011 at 04:37

Matt you're confusing me. Google was just telling us yesterday how Android was the force enabling low cost phones for the developing world..

I had my doubts, since Google branded phones have always been one of the most expensive - def not for the developing world - but still was starting to warm up to that marketing concept. Now you've ruined it completely by saying Symbian are the ones actually affordable and used in poorer nations!

Anyways, kidding aside, what I don't get is that the data doesn't match what we had from other sources, like the Wikipedia link given by tom.

equ  Dec. 31, 2011 at 12:42

Its just keeps showing what an idiot Elop is and the mess he has made of Nokia.
Though 33.5% does sound a little high and the 1% for WP7 should be more like 1.5% is does show the scale of the disaster. Though lanching the Lumia800 before its ready, getting bad press for pittiful battery life and the poor camera, why would it seel in volume at such high prices?

equ  Dec. 31, 2011 at 12:44

Though on the up side Nokia will outlast RIM...

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