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Study: Apple, Moto, Sony Ericsson lost share

updated 10:15 am EDT, Fri April 25, 2008

Lost Phone Share in Q1 08

Apple joins Motorola and Sony Ericsson as the firms losing cellphone marketshare in early 2008, according to a new study by research group Strategy Analytics. Sales of 1.7 million iPhones during the first calendar quarter of 2008 are said to have resulted in an actual drop in the iPhone's effect despite its young status, reducing the newcomer's marketshare from 0.7 to 0.6 percent from quarter to quarter. The drop is directly attributed to a combination of shortages as well as a glut of unsold units in Europe at the time. The phone is simply "overpriced" for the continent at its normal cost, Strategy Analytics director Neil Mawson says.

Many European carriers often subsidize the cost of high-end handsets to a greater degree than in the US. In many cases, smartphones such as the Nokia N95 or LG Viewty are often available for free with certain contracts.

Motorola and Sony Ericsson suffered more precipitous drops during the quarter. The former's decrease is the most severe and reveals that the sales plunge reported by the company translates directly to a decrease from 12.4 percent of the world's marketshare at the end of 2007 to just 9.7 percent at the start of 2008. Sony Ericsson's modest 2 percent growth in turn generated a subtler but noticeable decline from 9.4 percent to 7.9 percent in the same span.

Both companies have slowed due to a weak phone portfolio when compared to rivals, the study notes.

Those companies most likely to grow were Korean firms as well as market leader Nokia. While Finland's manufacturer grew slightly from 40.6 to 40.9 percent, its Asian challengers LG and Samsung expanded their share by four and two times faster than the industry average. LG jumped from 7.2 percent to 8.4 percent of the market, while Samsung climbed from 14.1 to 16.4 percent. Either company can point to stronger phone collections than available in the past.

Overall phone sales are up by approximately 14 percent to 282.3 million phones in the most recent quarter alone.

Market dynamics are expected to change this year for at least Apple and Sony Ericsson. iPhones are already known to be selling out at UK stores after the start of a promotional campaign and may see an upside from the expected launch of a 3G-supporting model in June, while Sony Ericsson plans to more aggressively target smartphones in late 2008 with the Windows Mobile-based XPERIA X1.

By Electronista Staff


  1. luckyday

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Apr 2008



    Uh oh!!!!!! Can't wait to see the comments here. Spin it, fanboys!!!!

  1. njfuzzy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Apr 2001


    My spin

    Okay, I'll bite. Before a major product refresh, replacing a 1.0 technology, market share slipped by a tenth of a percent. Boo hoo.

  1. MeandmyMac

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2008


    my fanboy spin : )

    "Market dynamics are expected to change this year for at least Apple and Sony Ericsson. iPhones are already known to be selling out at UK stores after the start of a promotional campaign and may see an upside from the expected launch of a 3G-supporting model in June,..."

    Count me in as one in this category, future Apple iPhone Owner helping to increase Apple's cell phone market share later this year. C'mon Apple 3G and the App Store for multiple native iPhone software applications! The 3G iPhone's launch, while it may not compare with the original iPhone launch in late June 2007, imho, will boost sales from people who wanted this type of iPhone all along and allow Apple to enter into new markets it currently can't due to tech specs limitations in those other countries which should help boost Apple's marketshare. Of course all specualtion on my part. We'll just have to wait for the future and see!

  1. UberFu

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2002


    what the h*** does

    Moto care ?

    They are cutting their Mobiule division loose_

    @luckyday -- seeing as how Q4 '07 was right at the holidays and Q1 '08 isn't -- think maybe that might make a litte tiny difference in quarter earnings? No?

  1. imagine engine

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2007



    With Sony Ericsson plans to release the Xperia X1 later this year it will be a tough product to beat. My hope is that Apple can release another version of the iPhone before Sony Ericsson that offers voice dialing, HSPA, video calling, 5 MP camera with LED flash, Flash Player for Safari, corporate push email, 802.11n, MMS, universal IM, increased storage and installable games that support OpenGL.

  1. mr.mouse

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2008



    Tiny difference to Market Share? Surely if Q1 means lower sales then that would apply across the board and percentage share of the market would be relatively unchanged.

    Come on guys, let's hear some more excuses. We haven't had anyone call the Analysts and Research clueless douchbags (whatever than is) or duffuses (whatever they are). Come on, don't let the reputation on MacNN down!

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    OK, that's it. I'm suing your a$$! I'm supposed to be the antagonizing voice of reason and intelligence! There's room for only one of us here! Go find yourself some other site to annoy people at. This place is mine!

  1. Flying Meat

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Jan 2007



    Thanks testudo!

    You heard him luckyday. On yer bike! ;)

  1. dliup

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2006



    I sell a ton of iPhones to Europeans. The truth is many Europeans buy their iPhones from unlockers in the states. Result = less people buy iPhones in Europe (although Europen phones would come with local support).

    Also, for at least a whole month it was extremely hard to get iPhones, thus Apple missed out on quite a number of sales.

  1. Constable Odo

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2007


    Lost market share...

    So what. Apple's iPhone wasn't supposed to have any market share from the beginning. All the handset companies said the iPhone would be a total failure and they'd be lucky if they sold a million with only one carrier and no experience in the business. So now if they lose a tenth of a percent of market share, that proves the iPhone is the consummate failure.

    Yet I can't figure out why those same companies keep trying to copy the iPhone. Really weird.

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