Nokia and BlackBerry pave the way for a world dominated by Android and iOS

It's finally time to bid BlackBerry OS, Symbian and Windows Mobile good bye thanks to the recent announcements made by old smartphone makers with new commitments to the Android ecosystem. New OS sales data from the Kantar Worldpanel ComTech show that iOS continued to grow but Android further cemented its position with market share increases worldwide. It's now clear that the mobile ecosystems are only limited to two players, Google's Android and Apple's iOS.

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The Nokia 5 with Android inside.

After continually making tiny dents into the worldwide mobile OS pie chart, this year will be a bit different as old rivals, BlackBerry with TCL and Nokia with HMD Global have committed to Android. The revival of these brands with fresh new hardware running on the Android operating system, hints that no matter where you come from, there's growth only available with Google's Android. This is more so as Apple continues lock down its software on it own mobile devices.

“February’s Mobile World Congress 2017 demonstrated the true state of the market, with re-emerging brand names Nokia and Blackberry capturing a lot of attention, but now operating on Android rather than on their own legacy operating systems,” said Lauren Guenveur, Global Consumer Insight Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.

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BlackBerry KeyOne running Android 7.0 Nougat

There was a feeling of nostalgia in the air at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) this year as well thanks to Nokia's revival of the old 3310 and BlackBerry's new take using an old formula; Android 7.0 Nougat paired with a physical QWERTY keyboard.

While Nokia was earlier glued to Symbian and BlackBerry to BlackBerry OS, it is now clear that the only other manufacturer that remains faithful to its ecosystem is Microsoft with Windows Mobile 10. But with not a single new release at the MWC 2017 and plans for a Surface Phone delayed to 2019, there's little hope.

According to the OS sales data, Android accounted for 74.3 percent of smartphone sales in the latest period, a marginal increase from 72.9 percent in the three months ending January 2016.

While Apple continues to dominate in bigger markets like Great Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Spain, Android dominates markets like China and India.

Out in China though the scene appears to be changing. While Android accounted for 83.2 percent of smartphone sold, Apple continued to be a top-selling brand. The scales however have changed with Huawei taking up a quarter of smartphones sales in the region and Apple along with Xiaomi coming in at second and third. Apple's dominance indeed it seems may have come to an end as brands like Oppo, Vivo and Huawei begin to take center stage.


Published Date: Mar 16, 2017 11:45 am | Updated Date: Mar 16, 2017 11:45 am