MANILA, PHILIPPINES, 28 MARCH 2011 – Google’s Android operating system is expected to dominate the Asia Pacific smartphone market by 2016.
Analyst firm Ovum says its research predicts that Android will then have a market share of 38.7 per cent in the region.
In its latest forecast, Ovum said Asia Pacific smartphone shipments will double by 2016 to 200 million, representing 30.7 per cent of global shipments, which are expected to reach 653 million units.
Smarphones are expected to account for 32 per cent of the market for mobile phones for the Asia Pacific market alone, representing a compound annual growth rate of 12.5 per cent between 2010 and 2016.
“Android will drive the growth and will emerge as the dominant platform, dramatically outperforming Apple with a massive 20 per cent lead on market share,” Ovum said in a statement.
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Ovum attributed Android’s success to the number of hardware vendors supporting the operating system.
Smartphones running Microsoft’s Windows Phone will be second most popular in the Asia Pacific market, with a share of 22.6 per cent. Apple’s iOS, will have a 19 per cent market share by 2016, followed by BlackBerry OS, with 9.2 per cent.
Ovum principal analyst Adam Leach said there will be a “dramatic shifts in dominance for smartphone software platforms” partly owing to the recently announced partnership between handset maker Nokia and Microsoft.
Leach said the Nokia-Microsoft partnership “has redrawn the smartphone market and will result in a significant reduction in shipments of Symbian-based handsets as Nokia transitions to Windows Phone as its primary smartphone platform.” Even then, some 76 million Symbian-based handsets are still expected to be shipped beyond 2012 and in some regions into 2016.
“For Microsoft the deal provides a committed handset partner that has the potential to make Windows Phone a mainstream smartphone platform. The risk to Microsoft is that other handset makers may choose not to compete with Nokia and may turn their backs on Windows Phone,” added Leach.
Leach said that aside from the platforms earlier mentioned, another player can make it to the mainstream. Among the options available are Bada, WebOS, or MeeGo, or a totally new entrant to the market.
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