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Windows Mobile continues to slip, though it remains the third biggest player on the market

The iPhone is one of the hottest smartphones on the market.  These days the smartphone market is largely delineated is driven by businesses which generally pick a Research in Motion Blackberry smartphone, or regular consumers who are looking for a media-toy (most seem to choose the iPhone).

Now, Windows Mobile has been passed by the iPhone in smartphone OS marketshare for the first time according to market research firm comScore.  The comScore data is collected from monthly surveys of thousands of customers in the U.S., asking them what phone they own.  The results are averaged over a three month period.

Analysis on the latest three month average, which ended in October, just wrapped up and the results have been aired.  They show RIM advancing its lead with about 14.96 million customers in the U.S.  Considering that RIM started the year with less than 10 million customers, this is an enormous success story and a testament, among other things, to the success of Verizon Wireless's buy-one-get-one promotion on Blackberry smartphones.  In total, the numbers indicate that from the start of the year to October RIM grew almost 55 percent in terms of units on the market.

The iPhone, likewise, has earned some bragging rights by stepping up to second place with approximately 8.97 million users.  Apple's growth is equally impressive when you consider that the first average of this year, which ended in February, showed the iPhone with only 5 million users -- that's a growth of approximately 70 percent.  This indicates that while both RIM and Apple are enjoying terrific growth, the iPhone's market share is growing slightly faster.

The news isn't so pretty for Microsoft, which fell to third place.  The Windows Mobile maker actually saw a slight contraction, with numbers slipping to around 7.13 million users. Microsoft was hurt by the fact that many customers don't want to get a Windows Mobile 6.5 phone when Windows Mobile 7 will be arriving in 2010, bringing with it significant improvements.  Microsoft also is having a tougher time finding its role amidst the emerging iPhone (fun) and Blackberry (business) duopoly.  It is significant to note that Microsoft was the only major phone OS maker of the six in the study to have lost marketshare in the period ending in October.

As for Android, Palm, and Symbian, all showed modest growth.  Android finally cracked the million mark, weighing in with 1.02 million users.  Palm, boosted by the Pre and new Pixi, showed about 2.484 million customers in the final period of the year and Symbian had 1.3 million users.

Overall, the smartphone market continues to grow.  According to the survey, an estimated 36 million Americans (11.8 percent of the total population) own a smartphone, while 196 million Americans (64.4 percent) own a traditional phone.

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Windows Mobile 7 expected late 2010
By Gungel on 12/17/2009 9:43:40 AM , Rating: 5
"when Windows Mobile 7 will be arriving in the first half of 2010"

The last I heard its going to be 3rd or 4th quarter 2010 before it'll ship.

By Brandon Hill on 12/17/2009 9:46:18 AM , Rating: 2
You are correct. The article has been updated.

RE: Windows Mobile 7 expected late 2010
By rudy on 12/17/2009 10:26:10 AM , Rating: 4
Not only that but no one I know or heard of is waiting for windows mobile 7. The fact is windows mobile has issues. It lags and hangs up. And it is not easy enough to use with only your fingers due to the really small size or icons and such because it was built for the use of a stylus and small resolution displays.

M$ needs to pull out all the the stops and fix up what they currently have out before the damage is permanent if it is not already. And BTW I have a windows mobile smart phone so I know first hand. There are some great things about windows mobile but they are over shadowed by the the fact that the common tasks most people do are hindered by laggy slow response and an out dated UI. And M$ cannot let people go find their own solutions because most users do not bother. They just move on to the next phone.

RE: Windows Mobile 7 expected late 2010
By Sazar on 12/17/2009 10:59:30 AM , Rating: 3
I wonder if they will integrate some of the UI features on the ZuneHD. They sort of started that route with the 6.5 update.

To this day, I still believe that the ZuneHD has one of the cleanest and easiest to use interfaces on the market :)

By scrapsma54 on 12/17/2009 5:09:32 PM , Rating: 3
Microsoft seems to be a bit retarded when it comes to what people like. You see it takes many failed attempts to get that killer OS right.

Windows OS mobile 6=everything people hate about a pc in a mobile package.

Zune HD=everything people like in a mobile device

RE: Windows Mobile 7 expected late 2010
By mckinney on 12/17/2009 11:14:15 AM , Rating: 5
For what its worth, I got the Motorola Droid two weeks ago, and it also hangs/freezes more than any phone I have ever had. Sometimes I cant even answer a phone call because it becomes unresponsive (there are no send/end buttons). I haven't even installed any apps yet. There are a lot of discussions with freezing in various forums on the net. Most of the success of the top makers probably has to do with how stable they are - no surprise!

By kmmatney on 12/17/2009 9:21:17 PM , Rating: 2
Not too surprising about the Droid, since it was just recently released. It will probably take a few updates to get everything stable.

By Chudilo on 12/18/2009 9:45:11 AM , Rating: 2
I've got the Droid as well. It's obviously not not as cleaned and polished as the iPhone. However a nice fully functional browser makes it worthwhile. Flash is coming next year (not on the iphone). Thanks to the quality of the verizon network (I'm in NYC) I am able to steam high quality internet broadcasts(192kbs+ I've even done 320kbs) I have lots of apps installed. Lots of great free ones. It did freeze on me 2ce. But the thing is obviously a work in progress. The recent update (Dec 11th) made number of great improvements.

By sigmatau on 12/17/2009 5:10:54 PM , Rating: 1
Same with Blackberries. They are laggy, buggy, they drop calls, they make errors during calls, and don't accept calls sometimes. Slow hardware to boot with a small screen doesn't help either.

I want to get a Android phone. Hopefuly they are better.

By EasyC on 12/18/2009 12:30:19 PM , Rating: 2
FWIW, I have a HTC Touch Pro 2 with a windows mobile 6.5 ROM loaded on. I haven't had any buggy/slow/laggy issues whatsoever....except when using AIM. The AIM software itself for mobile phones has always sucked IMO. OZ messenger works flawlessly. I used to support Palms and Blackberrys at an old job of mine. I can tell you that I will NEVER own one of either.

If UI is your issue, SPB Mobile Shell would be the best $ spent on a WM6+ phone.

By aqwan135 on 12/20/2009 8:10:49 PM , Rating: 1

fr ee sh i pp ing

(jordan shoes) $32

(air max) $34



Where is it?
By HighWing on 12/17/2009 10:14:06 AM , Rating: 2
Microsoft was hurt by the fact that many customers don't want to get a Windows Mobile 6.5 phone when Windows Mobile 7 will be arriving in 2010,

More like they can't find them. I went looking for one just a few weeks ago and at best could only find One phone per store that had 6.5! And it wasn't the type of phone I like, so I didn't get it.

As far as I know 6.5 has only been out a few months. So it's no surprise that people don't have it yet. But to make other claims for why it's not gaining ground is pretty laughable.

To be honest I would like a 6.5 phone as 6.1 is pretty buggy. I'm also not to happy that the new app store only supports 6.5 *laughs* and MS wonders why it's not taking off. Kinda hard to do when very few phones out even support it!

RE: Where is it?
By omnicronx on 12/17/2009 10:48:35 AM , Rating: 2
To be honest I would like a 6.5 phone as 6.1 is pretty buggy. I'm also not to happy that the new app store only supports 6.5 *laughs* and MS wonders why it's not taking off. Kinda hard to do when very few phones out even support it!
Thats only phase one, it will support 6.1, and really there are already cabs out there that will let you install marketplace on 6.1

RE: Where is it?
By HighWing on 12/17/2009 11:11:26 AM , Rating: 2
true, and I've heard that too. But on the surface it really does seem silly, if not dumb, to release an app store and not support what you currently have out in the wild! It would be one thing if they had several new phones coming out at the same time with the supported OS, but they didn't, and still don't. It's almost like the want it to fail!

RE: Where is it?
By Taft12 on 12/17/2009 11:30:52 AM , Rating: 2
To be honest I would like a 6.5 phone as 6.1 is pretty buggy.

Wouldn't it be even better to buy a phone that runs an OS that you haven't experienced bugginess on? This is not how you send a message to a company that you are unsatisfied...

RE: Where is it?
By HighWing on 12/17/2009 11:46:15 AM , Rating: 2
Actually I am considering an Android phone, but I am waiting to see what happens with the 2.0 release as there seems to be some issues on weather the current set of phones will be upgradable or not.

And so far I don't like the look/feel of the few Palm phones.

But one reason why I want to stick with WinMo is that I have already bought a lot of apps/games for it that I don't want to rebuy on another phone OS.

RE: Where is it?
By noirsoft on 12/17/2009 8:20:00 PM , Rating: 2
Windows marketplace for Mobile has been officially out for 6.0 and 6.1 phones for several weeks. It's still a bit small in terms of number of apps (only 4 fart apps so far) but it has most of the big ones there. I still prefer Handango, though, since there is no free trial system at Marketplace.

Here's the link to the page where you can download it on your phone

RE: Where is it?
By HighWing on 12/18/2009 1:19:52 PM , Rating: 2
sweet thanks for the link. I didn't think they would get around to opening it up this year.

Though just an FYI to everyone else. The link only works if you go to it on your phone. Otherwise you will get a 404 error if you try to download it on your desktop first.

You really can't sell s**t on a stick
By UNCjigga on 12/17/2009 11:28:43 AM , Rating: 2
No news here. You can only sell crap for so long before the peons get wise to your game. Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking the history of Windows Phone/Windows Mobile/Windows CE etc. It was a great OS for PDAs. I have fond memories of my iPaq and my old Dell Axim. But the fact that Microsoft is still selling a 4 year-old PDA OS with phone features grafted is inexcusable. Microsoft should just give up on the consumer smartphone market for now and focus on business users. Maybe they can go back to the drawing board and start from scratch?

RE: You really can't sell s**t on a stick
By MrX8503 on 12/17/2009 11:56:19 AM , Rating: 3
I agree for the most part, except the part about MS giving up on smartphones. I hate Apple as much as the next guy because of their closed system, but why in the world does it take so long for competitors to catch up is beyond me.

MS was probably slackin off twiddlin their thumbs while Steve Ballmer stating that "There's no way the iPhone will gain significant marketshare". Now that the iPhone is destroying the competition, MS went back to the think tank and are probably saying "Crap, we should of been workin on win mobile 7"

With the delay of winmobile 7, MS is a good 3 years behind. I've used the Droid, most HTC phones, the Palm Pre, and the Blackberry curve. I hate to say it, but all of them failed compared to the iPhone in terms of OS responsiveness. Ontop of that most smartphone OS's are ugly as sin, I think HTC needs to be contracted out by MS.

By mckinney on 12/17/2009 12:27:13 PM , Rating: 3
I've used the Droid, most HTC phones, the Palm Pre, and the Blackberry curve. I hate to say it, but all of them failed compared to the iPhone in terms of OS responsiveness.

I agree. I have used my Moto Droid side by side with my wifes Iphone 3Gs and would say the same. It isn't as responsive. The droids browser is nice, but jerky, whereas the the iphones is very smooth. I also get a lot of OS messages on failed processes on my droid. I dont know why. It would be nice if MS got back in the game.

RE: You really can't sell s**t on a stick
By michael2k on 12/17/2009 8:06:12 PM , Rating: 2
You answer your own question. Why does it take MS so long to catch up? Because they aren't closed. They need to support every manufacturer, device, chipset, and vendor.

Apple only has to support two radios (GSM+EDGE), two CPUs (both ARM), two GPUs (both PowerVR), and two chipsets (both Samsung).

You will have to accept either waiting for people to catch up, or a closed system.

RE: You really can't sell s**t on a stick
By MrX8503 on 12/18/2009 12:26:02 AM , Rating: 2
An open system does slow things down, but for some reason I still think MS didn't start development on WinMobile 7 until the iPhone started kickin butt and taking names. Almost the same reason as AMD being too comfortable with the X2, then they were caught with their pants down with Conroe.

Because if that wasn't the case, we wouldn't be stuck on the same old WinMo OS for how many years now? We would have WinMo7 now.

Ontop of that, whats holding back WinMo phones from having a powerful CPU/GPU? The iPhone is 3 years old and the only phone out there that is more powerful is the unreleased HTC HD2. Outpaced in OS, Hardware, and Applications by 3 years. I don't see an iPhone killer for quite some time.

By michael2k on 12/18/2009 1:21:10 PM , Rating: 2
Well, then you're asking why MS is incompetent. They saw the iPhone six months before release, January of 2007. Their response, WinMo7, won't be out until late 2010, or over 3 years later.

I don't have an answer for that conundrum.

I do have an answer for your other question; what's holding back WinMo phones from having a powerful CPU/GPU? No OS, SDK, or API that can take advantage of the powerful CPU or GPU.

Windows Mobile 6.5 rests upon Windows CE5, which to my understanding is stuck at DX8, technology from the year 2002. The iPhone, in comparison, has OpenGL ES 1.1 and 2.0 (2004 and 2007 respectively).

OpenGL ES == PlayStation 3, PSP, DirectX 8 == original XBox, if that helps define the capabilities.

Do those numbers make sense?
By polaris2k4 on 12/17/2009 10:17:36 AM , Rating: 2
Symbian is known to have the highest (or 2nd highest, depending on who you ask) worldwide smartphone market share at around 30-50%, how is even possible that they can be 2nd to last in the US with a little over 1mio units? Maybe I wont expect them to be at the top, but being this far off seems to be a little hard to believe.

Plus, with Comscore's known practice of assigning weights (read: fudge factor) into their data, I think it would be wise to take these numbers with a bit more than a grain of salt.

RE: Do those numbers make sense?
By michael2k on 12/17/2009 8:13:21 PM , Rating: 2
Why is that so hard to believe?

Apple has 9% PC market share in the US but 3% worldwide.
Essentially that means Nokia sells no smartphones in the US and all their smartphones worldwide.

Worldwide numbers
By omnicronx on 12/17/09, Rating: 0
RE: Worldwide numbers
By UNCjigga on 12/17/2009 11:33:19 AM , Rating: 2
Symbian has absolutely nothing to do with Palm--please clarify what you meant by that?

Even Symbian can't sit pretty on all that marketshare. Development is continuing, but Nokia seems to betting the farm on Maemo as their flagship OS.

RE: Worldwide numbers
By omnicronx on 12/18/2009 4:48:29 PM , Rating: 2
I meant to say Nokia.. not Palm (brainfart).. but the point still remains the same . Nokia Symbian phones still represent the bulk of their smartphone sales by a longshot.

As of Q2 this year, Symbian share alone accounted for almost 50% of the entire worldwide smartphone market.

So once again, this article title (was) making a claim that was incorrect. I say was because the article name was changed.

By judasmachine on 12/17/2009 11:19:59 AM , Rating: 2
Android's numbers will be higher in the next period. This data ended in October and VZW released thief 'Droid phones in November to some fanfare. Does this make them top dog, no, but they had to grow quite a bit since November 6th.

RE: Android
By hadifa on 12/17/2009 5:20:01 PM , Rating: 2
I think the numbers will be higher for another important reason as well.

Android has just started and there is a slew of phones to be released for it next year in different price points and for different tastes.

The question is if they can keep the experience consistent enough and be able to carve a reputation in the mass market.

By illonexxx on 12/17/2009 11:08:57 AM , Rating: 3
Once the HD2 hits US market Q1 2010 I fully expect Microsoft numbers to increase drastically. I only hope it comes to Sprint or I will be forced to switch telcos.

By damianrobertjones on 12/17/2009 12:24:19 PM , Rating: 3
I've used a LOT of Winmobiles over the years and thus I've used a whole lot of really bad phones.

On the other hand, I've had quite a few good models, like the Touch HD etc. I currently use the Toshiba TG01 which uses a 1Ghz cpu along with a 4.1" screen

It has it's problems, like the person on the other end hearing crashing noises at random monets and the fact that the battery lasts around 0.4seconds :p (Ordered a Mugen 2600mAph battery) , but it's a very, very fast phone. It does what I want, is fluid and does not require a stylus for anything. The screen hardly ever misses my finger presses and is probably the most fun I've had with a phone

All in all, if you've got the cash, there's plenty of models on ebay right now. Ignore the bad press which is probably the ONLY reason why WinMob is suffering.

No windows phone will ever be perfect, but saying that, neither will any other phone

By sapiens74 on 12/17/2009 12:57:58 PM , Rating: 3
We have used several model phones at work from Windows Mobile 6.0, 6.1 and now 6.5 and each phone can be very different experience

Blackberry and Iphones are consistent throughout models and 90 percent of our users want one or the other.

I wish MS would make their own phone instead of leaving it to the OEM's. Until then, the WinMobile phones aren't for us

By sapiens74 on 12/17/2009 1:01:26 PM , Rating: 2
Droid seems to be a hit for those who don't like the iPhone or ATT, and with their Google branded phone coming out, look out!

You may see them battling everyone else for last place with Apple and Google going at it over the next few years

By amandahugnkiss on 12/17/2009 2:50:48 PM , Rating: 2
Looking at the chart linked in the article the first entry on the chart is for 'No proprietary OS', and the number dwarfs every other data point at over 13X the market share of RIM. Can you guys find out what that number really represents? It seems unlikely there are that many smart phones with custom kernels/OSes.

Response from Dell
By JJDavisatDell on 12/17/2009 5:43:36 PM , Rating: 2
As you’ve reported, there were some pricing errors that occurred overnight on Dell’s U.S. Software & Peripherals website, which impacted some of our Small and Medium Business and Consumer customers. Coupled with human error, a corrupted file containing incorrect pricing was posted.

We apologize to our customers for any inconvenience our mistake may have caused and are working quickly to rectify the situation. Most incorrect orders will be canceled (even the mouse for $4,000), and customers have the option to reorder at the correct price. Affected customers will receive an email from Dell within 24 hours explaining the situation and how they can reorder on if they choose. An error like this is regrettable any time of year, but especially now with the holidays upon us.

JJ Davis, Dell

By eickst on 12/17/2009 5:44:59 PM , Rating: 2
Not to be a spelling nazi but it should be "Vendor".

Business phone
By kmmatney on 12/17/2009 9:33:35 PM , Rating: 2
I completely disagree with the iPhone being just for the "fun" crowd. It's easily the best business phone my small company has ever used. Much easier to configure and use compared to all other phones we've used, which is great as we don't have an IT dept.

Call me crazy but...
By Motoman on 12/18/2009 10:21:34 AM , Rating: 2
...I don't think the average consumer gives a rat's ass what OS is on their phone. And I'd be willing to bet that the vast majority of phone owners probably wouldn't understand the question if you asked them what OS their phone ran.

People buy phones based on what it does for them. Not the OS that's on it. If WinMo is losing marketshare, it's because people don't want the device...flip that over - people aren't buying iPhones because they want a phone that runs that OS, they're buying iPhones because they want iPhones.

iPhone = NY Yankees
By hiscross on 12/17/2009 7:48:59 PM , Rating: 1
They both demand to be the very best and their track record proves it.

"We’re Apple. We don’t wear suits. We don’t even own suits." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs

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