Nielsen: Android grows, RIM draws attention

Android is the top smartphone OS, while some early adopters want a new BlackBerry, a survey says

Google's Android OS continues to gain on both Apple iOS and Research In Motion's BlackBerry platform in the growing US smartphone market, but often stodgy RIM is on the wish lists of some cutting-edge buyers, according to the Nielsen research company.

Nielsen's Mobile Insights survey for May through July showed 40 per cent of all smartphones in the US ran Android, while 28 per cent were iPhones. RIM made up 19 per cent of phones in consumers' hands. Just last November, it held 26.1 per cent of the market.

However, the class of consumers that Nielsen calls "Innovators," the self-described earliest adopters of new products, were the most interested in buying a BlackBerry as their next smartphone. In survey results from consumers likely to buy a smartphone in the next year, 11 percent of Innovators named BlackBerry as the most likely OS they'll seek out, a bigger percentage than for any other group of shoppers.

RIM recently unveiled phones running the new BlackBerry 7 OS, and the long-anticipated phones based on its all-new QNX platform, first used in the PlayBook tablet, are expected next year. The company has struggled to keep up with smartphones based on Android and iOS, and in June it cut its sales forecast and announced layoffs. On Wednesday, Mike Kirkup, RIM's senior director of global developer relations, announced he had resigned.

Among the Innovators polled by Nielsen, the most desired smartphone OS was Android, at 40 percent, with iOS coming in second at 32 percent. Among smartphone shoppers as a whole, desire for the two big OSes was roughly even at about 30 percent each, according to Nielsen. But Apple could soon gain on Google if it announces the next-generation iPhone next month, as many observers expect.

Microsoft's Windows Mobile and Windows Phone 7 platforms lagged behind BlackBerry in buying intentions, with the most interest coming from the earliest adopters, of whom about 7 per cent are looking for a Microsoft phone. Among devices in consumers' hands now, the expired Windows Mobile platform made up 7 per cent of units and the new Windows Phone 7 was just 1 per cent, Nielsen said.

Smartphones now make up 40 percent of all handsets in the US, with less-capable feature phones now 60 percent of the market, according to Nielsen. Mobile operators are promoting the trend toward smartphones, which can consume more data services. On Thursday, Verizon Wireless began a limited-time offer of a $US100 gift card to current subscribers who upgrade from a feature phone to a smartphone.

Stephen Lawson covers mobile, storage and networking technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Stephen on Twitter at @sdlawsonmedia. Stephen's e-mail address is stephen_lawson@idg.com

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Appleresearch in motionconsumer electronicsGooglenielsensmartphonesmobile

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Stephen Lawson

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?