According to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, Apple’s iOS share is growing faster than Android by a rate of 2.3% growth to 1.4% growth for Android. The bigger news (well, sort of) is that the Windows Phone OS from Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) is up by 1.8% year over year, even though its overall share remained steady at 5.6%. The three leading operating systems collectively grab 98.7% of the smartphone market. How BlackBerry (NASDAQ: BBRY) hopes to play in this space remains a mystery.
Other interesting data points from the Kantar survey show that Verizon Wireless, a joint venture between Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone PLC (NASDAQ: VOD), is selling more Windows phones and that Sprint Nextel Corp. (NYSE: S) is selling more iOS phones. Verizon’s Windows share rose from 0.2% in April 2012 to 6.8% in April 2013. Sprint’s iOS share grew from 33.4% last year to 38.4% this year.
Some 23% of Windows devices purchasers were former Android device users, while 42% had been feature-phone users. According to Kantar, Apple’s iOS is equally effective at stealing Android users, but it does not match Windows’ appeal to former feature-phone users. Windows phones also gained share in the 25 to 34 year old age group.