updated 09:20 am EDT, Tue April 26, 2011
Nielsen March 2011 share shows Android at 37pc
Android has reached a new high in US market share but almost entirely at the BlackBerry's expense, Nielsen said on Tuesday. Google was now up to 37 percent share from 29 percent just in the fall. All of that came from RIM supporters defecting to the platform, though, as BlackBerry use fell five points to 22 percent while the iPhone remained steady at 27 percent.
Windows Phone 7 was keeping Microsoft alive at a flat 10 percent, but webOS dropped again to three percent. Nokia's Symbian stayed at two percent.
The BlackBerry-to-Android conversion rate was the most apparent in market sahre among those who'd bought a phone in the past half year, Nielsen said. Exactly half had bought Android, but just 15 percent had bought a BlackBerry. Apple's rate was 25 percent, suggesting a relatively loyal base. Android was also scraping away users who would have otherwise gone for a minority platform, since only seven percent bought a WP7 or Windows Mobile device, two percent webOS, and one percent Symbian.
Any threat to the iPhone would be long term but could be coming up, Nielsen said. For the first time, Android just managed to pass iOS as the platform of choice for those buying a phone in the next year, at 31 percent to 30 percent. Everyone else faced bleak prospects, as interest in the BlackBerry dropped to 11 percent, Windows Phone to six percent, and webOS to just one percent.
The results could change significantly in coming months. Apple usually sees a surge in demand around a new iPhone introduction, this year expected in September. RIM, hurt at least partly by an aging phone lineup, might get a minor resurgence should it unveil the expected BlackBerry Bold Touch and other new phones in the next several weeks.