Apple, the golden child of mass media and the business world, had record breaking sales of the iPhone 5s and 5c with 9 million sold in it’s debut weekend, and went on to sell 35.2 million phones this last quarter. It was by far the most successful phone launch of the year, as we all new it would be. But it wasn’t enough. The oh-so-successful iPhone is failing miserably.
Think I’ve gone looney now? I haven’t. Follow along.
No one can argue that the iPhone 5s, and to a much lesser extent the 5c has made Apple money. They have. They’ve made Apple lots of money. But during this time that Apple is making massive amounts of cash, they are also losing massive amounts of market share.
Even while selling 4 million more phones this last quarter than the prior quarter, Apple’s global market share dropped to 11.7%. Android meanwhile sold 64 million phones, and increased their market share to 84.7%. (source)
Apple’s market share for the iPhone slipped year on year to just 11.7% of the entire market, while Android’s market share increased to 84.7%. You may be thinking, why does this even matter? Apple is still making loads of money, why even concern themselves with market share?
It’s quite simple really. Apple’s biggest win, what iPhonians argue every time we discuss what our phones can do, is apps-apps-apps. As I’ve said before, and will continue saying, is that the iPhone is merely an app launcher. And the reason people will spend so much money on an app launcher, is because the apps are there. As the mobile landscape changes, and as BlackBerry and Windows Phone, and Ubuntu, and Sailfish and whatever other platforms arrive will be running android apps, iPhone will be off on it’s own running only iOS apps. And this platform, which runs only proprietary apps, is only selling 1 in 10 devices. How long do you think this platform will continue to be the first to get apps? How long do you think developers will continue to develop for it at all, before they decide the market share and customer base are insignificant?
And is it already happening? Just yesterday, admitted iPhone fans, Gigaom posted an article titled “It’s 2014, and Android fragmentation is no longer a problem“, in which they explain that many of them have started carrying Android, that much of what they do now is becoming focused on Android and explain that prior arguments as to why people would not develop for Android instead of iOS has now been rendered false.
Yes, Apple desperately needs the iPhone 6 to break all records, they need to increase market share and increase it fast. We know what happens to smart phones when app developers stop supporting them.
Luckily for us, BlackBerry has our man John Chen, righting the ship and increasing the standing of BlackBerry. And Tim Cook is no John Chen.