An analysis of the mobile phone market by analyst firm International Data Corporation's (IDC) shows Android the "clear leader" in the smart phone mobile operating system race with 68.3% of the market in 2012. The iPhone is a distant second at 18.8% with all other operating systems below 5%. Growth of the overall mobile phone market, including non-smart "feature phones," is up a measly 1.4% in 2012, indicating that all the growth is in smart phones.
IDC also projects market share in 2016, when it expects Android to remain the dominant player, but with share dropping to 63.8%. The forecast shows Android as holding dominance because it is the easiest to sell to the great mass of customers, while iPhones have become a premium, high-priced option that "...will make it cost prohibitive for some users within many emerging markets," according to the report. If Apple wants to grow this share, IDC says it will need to consider lower-priced models. IDC projects iOS market share nearly unchanged in 2016 at 19.1%.
The report lists even BlackBerry share largely unchanged, moving from 4.7% in 2012 to 4.1% in 2016, still with a decent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.6%. IDC expects BlackBerry to retain this share largely through "...pockets of strength in higher-growth emerging markets such as Indonesia and various Latin American countries."
The real movement in the projections is in Windows Phone, which holds a mere 2.6% share in 2012. Owing to Microsoft's strong funding and brand and the entry of multiple handset makers into the market, IDC projects Windows Phone share jumping to 11.4% in 2016.