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October 15, 2009


Markus Lehtiniitty

"for the first time as far as I can remember, Nokia's smartphone market share has fallen below its total handset market share."

Actually quite recently, if I remember correcly in Q4/2008, Nokia's smartphone marketshare was only 31 % - clearly below its share of the overall market. Then in Q1/2009 smartphone share rose to 38 %, Q2/2009 to 41 % and now we are at 35 %. Interesting to see what happens in Q4.


Today was no surprise. This has been happening for awhile, and I think I posted this awhile back. From 2004 to 3Q2007, using Nokia numbers, Nokia had over 50% smartphone share in every qtr except one (2Q06, 48%). So Nokia was keeping pace as the smartphone market grew. But since then, its share numbers are 47%, 44%, 41%, 35%, 31%, 38%, 41%, 35%. Though smartphones were growing in market share, Nokia's flagship N-series were posting these terrible numbers (approximate, units in millions): 11.4(4Q07), 9.7. 10.1, 8.8, 7.9, 5.0, 4.6, 4.5(3Q09). Disappointing.

Meanwhile, Blackberry grew just about every quarter, going from 2.4m units in 3Q07 to 8.3m in 3Q09. And Apple, though not as evenly as RIM, grew from 0.3m units in 3Q07 to 5.2m in 2Q07 and possibly 8m in 3Q09 (will know Monday).

Yes, Nokia can bounce back but I really haven't seen anything yto convince me yet, as this general decay has been happening for two years now (or since iPhone hit the market).


To be fair and consistent, I should add that Nokia's E-series numbers have grown with the market - going from 1.8m in 3Q07 to 4.4m in 3Q09. But one could've inferred from the overall smartphone numbers that the rest of Nokia's converged devices aren't doing as poorly as the N-series.


I think Microsoft and Nokia are in a similar position in that they were both late to realize that all the key innovations in smartphones going forward were going to be in the software space. Microsoft's lack of action is particularly disgraceful because they are a software company!!

Both companies are in the middle of a major overhaul of their software platform - overhauls that will not be completed until the end of 2010. Until then, IMHO, both are going to get hit. The difference between the two is that Nokia is in a position of much greater strength - given their much larger market share they have enough of a buffer to successfully turn things around. Microsoft, on the other hand, is living on borrowed time. Any further delays in WinMo 7 could finish them as a major player.


CSR Racing Hack

I couldn't refrain from commenting. Exceptionally well written!

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