back to article Windows Phone market share hits double digits in UK and France

Microsoft has been gobbling up market share in Europe, with nearly one in eight phones in the UK now running Windows Phone and one in ten in France. "Windows Phone's latest wave of growth is being driven by Nokia's expansion into the low and mid range market with the Lumia 520 and 620 handsets," said Dominic Sunnebo, strategic …

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  1. Greg J Preece
    Thumb Up

    Glad to hear it's doing well. Competition in the space is always a good thing, and Windows Phone is very usable, especially for smartphone newcomers. Never mind that, like its desktop compatriot, Windows Phone is bloody fast.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

      ... but "competition" and "[MS] doing well" just don't mix.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

        Or not old enough to remember when MS was the competition to the Big Iron UNIX vendors and kicked them out of the datacentre for tasks they basically weren't suited for. Why would someone want to run a big UNIX server in order to serve files or run print jobs?

        1. James 100

          Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

          How is a Windows server any better suited to that than a Unix one? Cheaper hardware, thanks to the higher volume, but a less reliable OS with restrictive licensing? (We were a mixed Solaris/NetWare shop in those days; NW was pretty good at the file/print handling, Solaris did everything else very nicely. Windows really didn't have anything to offer on either side.)

          With hindsight, I really wish the Linux/BSD push had come that little bit earlier - a much more sensible migration path from proprietary Unixes. Still, it's doing pretty well these days...

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

            A Windows server was better because it was good enough and cheap as chips when compared to the Big Iron vendors. If you think MS licensing was restrictive you don't remember how much it cost to run UNIX. As for workstations, a Windows workstation running UNIX and Mainframe terminal software was so much cheaper than a UNIX workstation and much more usable than a dumb terminal. I had a Solaris workstation on my desk in the mid 90s, it cost £10k, a Windows workstation cost a few hundred quid and did everything we needed, so Solaris was given the boot from everything except database serving.

            1. Stuart Castle

              Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

              Indeed. Anyone who thinks Microsoft are restrictive either hasn't dealt with a lot of the old Unix vendors, or has forgotten doing so.

              I work at a Uni. When I was doing staff support, we had a lot of Sun workstations. These were admittedly lovely machines, but expensive to buy and maintain. I remember once I was attempting to fix one where the CDROM had died. It was actually a low end CD Rom drive (2x speed when the cheaper PC ones were up to 6 or 8x) with a slightly different interface. Sun wanted £600 for a new one. I've heard similar horror stories about Solaris licence costs which is presumably why a lot of the researchers who were using Solaris have moved over to PCs running Linux, or Windows.

              I also heard, during my degree, a story about a little trick ICL used to pull on their mainframes. Apparently, they used to sell an "upgrade" that doubled the users storage. What did the upgrade consist of? The engineer came and flipped a switch that activated read/write heads on the other side of the disks..

              While you can't freely distribute their software, compared to the old *nix/BSD workstation and mainframe vendors, MS are a paragon of openness and honesty.

              MS saw people doing this. They saw a gap in the market for a company that provided software for the cheap PC clones that were becoming available (I say cheap, they were still a couple of grand a pop). They also put processing power on people's desks at a relatively low price. This caused the market to explode.

              That's not to say MS are great, or even good. They've pulled some nasty tricks in the past. The traps put in Windows 3.1 to prevent competing software working as well, working on OS/2 with IBM, then producing the remarkably similar Windows NT at a lower price. I also believe they shafted Novell over Netware in much the same way.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

            "less reliable OS with restrictive licensing"

            You mean Solaris? or Redhat?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

          "Why would someone want to run a big UNIX server in order to serve files or run print jobs?"

          Microsoft these days are successfully kicking out legacy OSs for tasks like Databases, General Ledger and ERP solutions too! Why would someone want to run a UNIX server at all unless they need more than say 2TB of RAM in a single image?

      2. JLV Silver badge

        Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

        >but "competition" and "[MS] doing well" just don't mix

        Upvoted you cuz I dislike MS and I remember the 90s all too well, but...

        MS is bad for competition when it has a dominant position or is in danger of getting one. No danger of that happening here.

        It's better not to have a two horse race with Sammy & Apple. You all mostly have opinions about Apple and Apple is in the premium, spendthrift if you prefer, end of the market. There is no telling what exactly Sammy would be tempted to do if it were the only big player in the mass market.

        At minimum, a decent Nokia showing on budget smartphones will tend to drive prices down for the other two. Potentially, the same impact MS has on the database market - not great, but cheap, drives Oracle price down.

        And, possibly, some of what Redmond is up to will include some innovations. Haven't used WinPhone, don't plan to, but the tiles sounded innovative (in principle). And that Nokia camera tech is nifty too, tho it could have been done on Android Nokias. They employ a lot people and are dumping Ballmer - something's bound to bubble up.

        The only big loser from MS being around is Blackberry, which is too bad. I just missed buying a Z10.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Maybe I'm just too old a fart and remember things that should've been forgotten...

        Now that Gartner recommended that companies ditch Blackberry within 6 months, Windows Phone should pick up the bulk of those migrations. It's the obvious choice - highly secure (FIPS 140-2 certified out of the box), easy to manage, with a good selection of cost effective devices - that run MS Office clients.

        The alternatives are Apple - overpriced, fragile, harder to manage, and with a pretty poor security record. Or Android - fragmented, glitchy, poor performance, highly insecure with a terrible security record and harder to manage....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Doing well?

      So let me get this right. In the market where it has the best showing, it has just under 10% market share. Therefore in other markets it has a lot less, so overall it's share is less than 10%. This is good?

      1. asdf Silver badge

        Re: Doing well?

        Don't you love a thread with mostly turfing ACs arguing with each other.

      2. Greg J Preece

        Re: Doing well?

        So let me get this right. In the market where it has the best showing, it has just under 10% market share. Therefore in other markets it has a lot less, so overall it's share is less than 10%. This is good?

        Are you under the impression that market domination is the only way to be successful?

        Ah, why bother? I'd only be arguing with a brick wall. Looking at the number of downvotes I got for saying "Windows Phone is actually alright", the tribalism in the commentard section only ever increases...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Tribalism?

          You think we're joining the gang because we hope it will make us more popular and better liked? Or that we believe that MS and Nokia really don't deserve to succeed in the light of crimes past?

          1. Greg J Preece

            Re: Tribalism?

            You think we're joining the gang because we hope it will make us more popular and better liked? Or that we believe that MS and Nokia really don't deserve to succeed in the light of crimes past?

            So in your head downvoting anyone who likes a product simply because the company that made it were once dicks and you don't like them....isn't OTT? MS aren't my favourite company in the world, but I evaluate their products individually, almost like I'm a rational person. I'd much prefer it if Nokia had been allowed to continue their Maemo/MeeGo/Linux nuttery alongside Windows, because that line of phones was superb for me, but none of that makes Windows Phone a bad product, so I'm not going to say that it is.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Tribalism?

              OTT? Hitting like/dislike in the El Reg comments section? No. Hitting someone physically? Verbally abusing them? Just generally being mean/grumpy/irritable? Yes. Disliking comments you don't, er, like? No.

            2. N13L5

              Re: Tribalism?

              "So in your head downvoting anyone who likes a product simply because the company that made it were once dicks and you don't like them....isn't OTT?"

              What do you mean "were once dicks"..?

              They've been dicks consistently throughout their entire existence! They are now greater dicks than ever...

              Products and product changes without regard for customer needs but just to satisfy their self-serving corporate strategy of copying Apple's walled garden with endless tollbooths in a drive to start clipping your wallet on a monthly basis.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Doing well?

          Hey Greg, Thanks for the warning.... I just wrote a "You know what WP8 is pretty good" based on actually owning/using it rather than going with what I'd read on the internet! I like to make up my own mind. I will retire to the bunker and await the hate mail. But it is pretty good. If I show it to friends who have iPhones and nice Samsung's they also almost all think it looks cool. Will they change? Doubt it, especially the iPhone ones as Apple have done a brilliant job of making the platform sticky. Equally I think it would be a struggle for WP8 to convert many high end Android users. Again because those users get a pretty darn good experience.

          But WP8 can clean up disaffected BlackBerry users, and pick up some share from Android? Yes that's realistic. Things change so fast in this industry. Can't see why they would but imagine if Samsung decided to through some weight behind WP8 etc. In the Enterprise Microsoft has a supporters camp with the ability to implement and support in every single one of BlackBerry's customers. What they lacked previously was a half decent product. That is not the case any more. Things change.

          1. cambsukguy

            Re: Doing well?

            They might switch if, like me, they wanted better battery life and/or a better camera.

            To me, having slightly fewer apps (I mean in variation obviously, not raw quantity - or quality for that matter) is less important than having a day out and trying to use a phone on 10% battery instead of 50% or 60% and being worry free.

            Then, looking at the pictures I have taken and not wishing I had pocketed a compact camera instead.

            Then remembering that all those not-spots meaning maps often don't work or are painfully slow or use up my data allowance meaning I have to have a high data package instead of a tiny 500MB one, thus saving me loadsamoney every month.

            Oh wait... there are loads of reasons I switched regardless of the fact that I prefer WP to use as well!

            Win, Win (geddit?)

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Doing well?

        "So let me get this right. In the market where it has the best showing, it has just under 10% market share"

        You didn't. It has 12% market share in the UK....

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Doing well?

        I think the point is where they are now compared to where they were before.... If you grow at 50% or whatever it is that's pretty good

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Double digits?

      So they have sold 10 or 11 handsets?

    4. N13L5

      I don't know who all those senile or demented people are that don't even have family to warn them against Microsoft.

      But the truth is, we need Microcruft in the mobile space just to keep Google honest. Too bad about the poor sods making the big sacrifice and end up with those crummy windphone mobes.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Here we go again

    Using a notoriously pro-windows panel projections as if they were real sales figures. And now I'll probably get downvoted like crazy for pointing out that kantar is just a panel, doing projections from the choices of its members, not presenting real sales figures.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Here we go again

      No, the downvote from me is for the constant banging on about MS and WP and taking any opportunity to say how bad they are.

    2. Paul Shirley

      Re: Here we go again

      It is beginning to smell bad. With the figures they quote there should have been 4 gaudily coloured Lumias in the smallest pub on last weekends crawl, but when 20 or so phones came out for photos (brewery launch and pub award being given) I didn't spot one.

      The rest of the day, many more phones on display in larger places. Still didn't see that flash of bright plastic. Still haven't seen one anywhere but TV and the web.

      The ongoing flood of astroturfing seen everywhere is quite astonishing, it would be pretty easy to sign up on the many paid survey sites and affect the results, easy to ignore any warning signs if a survey company was inclined. Suspicious.

      1. Darryl

        Re: Here we go again

        Paul, using your logic, I just walked through the office* and I'm here to report that the global smartphone market is almost equally split between iPhone, Android, and Blackberry, with LG dominating the Android.

        (*Two LG's, one Samsung, three Blackberries, and two iPhones)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Here we go again

          @ Darryl. Which does rather prove the point that winpho is conspicuous by its absence.

        2. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: Here we go again

          @Darryl

          not quite but anecdotal surveys can be useful in testing the reliability of such reports: there should be at least some degree of correlation, assuming you weight your own observations. I think I've seen maybe two people using Nokia Windows Phones in about six months here in Germany. They're even starting to disappear from the shops.

          As a proxy for market share the mobile browser usage as tracked by Akamai has Windows Phone consistently at less than 1 %. Akamai is by far the world's largest content delivery network (146 of the web's top 1000 websites, some 54 % of those using CDNs) so a reasonable proxy.

          The failure to increase sales is, after all, why Microsoft is buying the Nokia handset business.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Here we go again

            Anecdotal is anecdotal - I went to Japan a few weeks ago, I saw two WP devices, they don't even sell WP in Japan.

            1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

              Re: Here we go again

              Anecdotal is anecdotal

              All surveys are anecdotal if they aren't weighted. This is a fundamental principle of sample-based statistics.

          2. Joe Montana

            Re: Here we go again

            Largely because the only people i've ever seen buying windows phones are those migrating from dumbphones, who simply aren't used to browsing from a mobile and are often on prepay sims without a data allowance so wouldn't use it anyway.

            Basically they use them as dumbphones, and only bought them because they were being offered very cheap.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Here we go again

            "Akamai is by far the world's largest content delivery network"

            Bu not to Windows Phone handsets, which don't run Flash on which the majority of the websites you mention base their content on...

            "The failure to increase sales is, after all, why Microsoft is buying the Nokia handset business"

            Nokia have increased sales at 30% a quarter for the last few quarters, and just hit 12% market share in the UK. Microsoft's main reason to buy is more likely that they want to be in a similar space to Apple....

            1. Charlie Clark Silver badge
              FAIL

              Re: Here we go again

              @anonymous coward aka Winpho Fanbro

              "Akamai is by far the world's largest content delivery network"

              Bu not to Windows Phone handsets, which don't run Flash on which the majority of the websites you mention base their content on...

              Flash doesn't run on I-Phones or a lot of Androids either. Doesn't seem to be doing their figures a lot o harm.

              Nokia sold because it was still losing cash and Microsoft bought because it is betting on the product line and realised tighter integration of hardware and software is required. Plus it needed to do something with it's offshore cash pile.

          4. This post has been deleted by its author

            1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

              Re: @Charlie

              @Prof. Hans Asperger

              I think we're pretty much in agreement on why Microsoft bought. But I don't think Elop joined Nokia to run the company into the ground prior to a sale. Given its cash pile Microsoft could have bought the business at any time, and time really has been of the essence. Bringing hardware and software development closer together was highlighted by the Nokia CEO as a requirement for the project to succeed. Microsoft now has to demonstrate the skills necessary to facilitate this and do it quickly.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: @Charlie

              "Microsoft didn't really want to by the Nokia handset business. But they had to; it was failing so fast it would have ceased to exist"

              I guess you havnt been watching Nokia for while - Nokia have several $ billion of net cash (even after recently buying 50% of Nokia Siemens networks), have several large credit lines, and are forecast back into profit next quarter.....and Lumia handset sales are growing rapidly!

              Microsoft probably just didn't want to risk anyone else buying them first....

          5. N13L5

            Re: Here we go again

            "As a proxy for market share the mobile browser usage as tracked by Akamai has Windows Phone consistently at less than 1 %."

            The actual share of Windphones could be somewhat higher, if you consider that only the very simple minded or senile would end up owning one, after getting bamboozled by some retarded advertising flash.

            Many of them would likely be unaware of the internet, let alone be able to brave the complexity of browsing it.

      2. Terry Barnes

        Re: Here we go again

        Erm, they're not all brightly coloured. Mine's black.

      3. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Here we go again - Anecdotal tales

        Just looking around the pub and sod the phones; we have a much bigger problem. From my counting, double checking and triple checking, there are no women in the world!

      4. bep

        Re: Here we go again

        I actually saw a bloke on the train last night using a Windows phone. First time ever. This proves that Windows phones are now wildly popular. Or maybe it just proves that they are very colourful, or something.

      5. Greg J Preece

        Re: Here we go again

        The rest of the day, many more phones on display in larger places. Still didn't see that flash of bright plastic. Still haven't seen one anywhere but TV and the web.

        You know you can get them in plain black, right? Mine is.

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Here we go again

        Same suspicions here.

        I take a vague interest in what phones people are using on the train and I see hardly any of Windows Phones, although there are a few out there if you look hard enough. The supposedly doomed BlackBerry outnumbers them by about 20 to 1, although I'll bet a lot of those BBs are quite old units. That said, the Windows Phones must be selling to some people because my brother got one, more by accident than design. His logic was that it was the only vaguely modern smart phone offered to him for no upfront cost on his dirt cheap contract. He knows little about smartphones and will treat it as a featurephone. He will text and take photos but I can't imagine he will ever pay for an app, or even pay much attention to the free ones. My initial reaction to the thing was pure instinctive horror but, given that it was effectively discounted to zero cost in a desperate attempt to dump the things, it is easy to see how they are ending up in the hands of people who don't care if the Apps are crap or even if the platform has a future so long as it performs its basic functions and that those people are going to be fairly satisfied with their limited abilities. Perhaps that is why I notice so few of them on the train. Their owners are not fondling them on the train like an iPhone, 'Droid or Blackberry, just shoving them in their ears when they ring. So, yes, there probably are more of these around than it seems but 10% of new sales? Pull the other one.

        By the same unscientific method of looking at what my fellow commuters are using, I count one, and only one, Microsoft Surface in the wild. Even worse, the guy was looking at Microsoft branded Powerpoints about how great MS products are, so he was either an MS Employee or a real sad case.

        Me? I have the dumbest dumbphone imaginable. It must be getting on for 10 years old now. It suits me perfectly as nobody can try to force me to do work on it and the last thing I intend to do is read bloody work email on the damn train.

        1. Anonymous Coward #13

          Re: Here we go again

          What an idiotic statement. You do know the difference between market share and installed base, right? 10% of new sales still only means a small percentage of the 70 million odd phones in UK.

          Too many innumerates.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Here we go again

            Thank you! You beat me to it. What hope for our children?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Here we go again

          had our Uni 20 yr reunion last week, in the evening there were 7 of us 3 had WP

      7. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Here we go again

        "when 20 or so phones came out for photos (brewery launch and pub award being given) I didn't spot one."

        There are plenty of Nokias to be seen about on public transport in the City of London, and around the square mile...

        1. hplasm Silver badge
          Meh

          Re: Here we go again

          "There are plenty of Nokias to be seen about on public transport in the City of London, and around the square mile..."

          Which proves something- but I don't think it's as good as you might imagine...

      8. cambsukguy

        Re: Here we go again

        All three of my Lumias have been Black (and still are I suppose).

        Harder to spot, still lovely to hold though.

    3. Anonymous Coward #13

      Re: Here we go again

      You must have missed all the IDC regional survey results.

      http://wmpoweruser.com/tag/idc/

      But I am sure you take what you see in the train and pub more seriously.

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