Seeking Alpha

The iPhone 5 (AAPL) launch has once more made iOS the most popular smartphone platform in the...

The iPhone 5 (AAPL) launch has once more made iOS the most popular smartphone platform in the U.S, but Europe is a different story. Kantar ComTech believes the iPhone's U.S. smartphone share for the 12 weeks ending Oct. 28 came in at 48.1% - that's up from the year-ago period's 22.4%, and slightly above Android's (GOOG) 46.7%. But in the EU5, the iPhone's share rose only 90 bps Y/Y to 21.2%, while Android's rose 1300 bps to 63.9%. Windows Phone had 4.7% of the EU5 , and 2.7% of the U.S., ahead of the WP8 launches. (previous)
From other sites
Comments (15)
  • dividend_growth
    , contributor
    Comments (2897) | Send Message
    Poor Europeans, especially the French and the Spaniards, can't afford iPhones anymore.
    27 Nov 2012, 12:45 PM Reply Like
  • pagreen1966
    , contributor
    Comments (646) | Send Message
    As someone based in Europe (London) I can state that one of the weaknesses of the iPhone in the eyes of Europeans is the small screen. Certainly everyone I know with a smartphone wants a 4.5 inch device or bigger.


    Wish Apple would introduce an iPhone Maxi.
    27 Nov 2012, 12:45 PM Reply Like
  • VeryCurious
    , contributor
    Comments (109) | Send Message
    Yes ! We need maxipads, minipads, etc.
    27 Nov 2012, 01:08 PM Reply Like
  • Bitz
    , contributor
    Comments (30) | Send Message
    AAPL has more than critical mass here and in Europe.


    I'm more interested in their remaining the most profitable consumer technology provider than the most popular.
    27 Nov 2012, 01:01 PM Reply Like
  • rocback
    , contributor
    Comments (1139) | Send Message
    That's amazing considering all the Andriod price points that Apple doesn't even compete in. I remember how the Andriod fanboys crowed about Andriods lead in the quarter when everyone was waiting for the Iphone5. Where are they now?
    27 Nov 2012, 01:10 PM Reply Like
  • Applocrat
    , contributor
    Comments (1001) | Send Message
    Europe is an interesting test case for Apple. Europeans are probably not as status driven as many in the rest of the world. Many Europeans believe (rightly or wrongly) that they invented globalization. They don't need the token of status as much. When the brand image does not drive purchases Apple has to compete on device functionality and price. Not saying they don't do a compelling job, but its interesting to watch the story unfold in a market that (might) be more "rational" in a way.
    27 Nov 2012, 01:19 PM Reply Like
  • ladubs111
    , contributor
    Comments (49) | Send Message
    yet Europe has the most luxury clothing brands, hand bags, watches, cars.
    27 Nov 2012, 01:48 PM Reply Like
  • Cincinnatus
    , contributor
    Comments (4068) | Send Message
    Europe is very status driven. Just look at their auto sales. I'd say if anything can be ascribed to consumer sentiment it has more to do with Apple being a prominent foreign, particularly an American, brand. Not sure how it is now, but go back 10 years and more and the Euros used to hate Japanese autos, not because they were better priced and more reliable, but because they were foreign (i.e. non-European). Just look at the figures on the Windows Phone share relative to the US. Guess who is behind that? Nokia.


    However without looking at how the operators are pushing deals and promotions it's impossible to draw definitive conclusions.
    27 Nov 2012, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • Rbongni
    , contributor
    Comments (33) | Send Message
    "Europeans are probably not as status driven as many in the rest of the world."


    This is far from the truth. Maybe compared to China. But certainty not the US.
    27 Nov 2012, 05:01 PM Reply Like
  • jebworks
    , contributor
    Comments (178) | Send Message
    I wouldn't put too much into those EU5 numbers. The recessionary Europeans seem to be looking for the cheap bargain. That's not where the margins are.
    27 Nov 2012, 01:40 PM Reply Like
  • css1971
    , contributor
    Comments (870) | Send Message
    It's a status thing. iPhone users are simply seen as not the sharpest tools in the box in Europe. This obviously isn't a problem in America.
    27 Nov 2012, 03:30 PM Reply Like
    , contributor
    Comments (114) | Send Message
    I got the iphone 5 the first day it came out, best phone I ever had, even sold my GSIII which was my fav at the time. I'm gonna wait for the GSIV to come out in March, that phone is supposed to be a beast. I had the Galaxy Note II for a week and took it back, I felt like a geek holding that big monster.


    As of right now, without all the fanboism, the iP5 is best period and this is coming from a guy who gets a new phone every 3 months just to see whats best out there.
    27 Nov 2012, 04:23 PM Reply Like
  • AnLe41
    , contributor
    Comments (127) | Send Message
    I believe there are three main reasons why the iPhone 5 is not on par with the US in terms of unit share success:


    1) The most populous nations in Europe are really in a recession, with negative outlooks for the next couple of years, which really affects household spending negatively and inevitably a premium product like the iPhone 5.


    2) Europe is less homogenous on frequency band allocation for LTE/4G licenses (than the US), causing the iPhone 5's LTE support to lack several major European markets. Since operators want to steer as much traffic from their overloaded 3G networks to their still "empty" 4G networks as possible, they have shifted some of their marketing spend to other LTE-working (Android) devices in countries where iPhone 5's LTE doesn't currently work. Apple did increase the number of LTE bands supported in iPhone 5 compared with the LTE support in "iPad 3" (the first iOS device with 4G support), but iPhone 5 still leaves blank spots in several markets for the time being.


    3) Apple's market communications activities & and adds spending is enormous in the US, where adds are aired across most premium channels and mainstream media. Europe is a completely different ball game, and Apple is much more reliant on operators' marketing, word of mouth, and free publicity from articles in the press and other journalistic material in the media. The quantity of positive publicity Apple got for free used to exceed any imaginable adds spending budget of its own in the past. However, as Apple has become the biggest company by market capitalization, it is becoming more attractive to relay "bad news" around new product launches from Apple, regardless of how well-founded these are, as the media's game is all about drawing attention from the public. I believe this trend shift is more pronounced in Europe than in the US.


    Even if the iPhone 5 is highest quality and best smart phone in the market, all considered, for now, the above three factors will inevitably impact total iPhone sales in Europe for now. The first one by far outweighing the other two.
    27 Nov 2012, 07:12 PM Reply Like
  • LarsJordebo
    , contributor
    Comments (3) | Send Message
    Excellent analysis.


    I live in Sweden and I agree. I do have a iPhone 5 though.
    28 Nov 2012, 02:50 AM Reply Like
  • New Century
    , contributor
    Comments (132) | Send Message
    22% last year seems way too low.
    16 Dec 2012, 10:49 PM Reply Like
DJIA (DIA) S&P 500 (SPY)
ETF Screener: Search and filter by asset class, strategy, theme, performance, yield, and much more
ETF Performance: View ETF performance across key asset classes and investing themes
ETF Investing Guide: Learn how to build and manage a well-diversified, low cost ETF portfolio
ETF Selector: An explanation of how to select and use ETFs