Android To Surpass Windows By 2016: IDC - InformationWeek
Software // Operating Systems
09:47 AM
Ransomware: Latest Developments & How to Defend Against Them
Nov 01, 2017
Ransomware is one of the fastest growing types of malware, and new breeds that escalate quickly ar ...Read More>>

Android To Surpass Windows By 2016: IDC

Shift from the desktop to mobile computing will cost Microsoft its top spot in the OS market by 2016, IDC predicts.

Microsoft's Windows operating system has been the dominant personal computing platform for more than two decades, but its reign is coming to an end, according to a study released Wednesday.

In terms of market share for operating systems on what researchers at IDC call smart connected devices--a definition that includes PCs, media tablets, and smartphones--Microsoft led the pack with a market share of 35.9%, at the end of 2011. Google Android held the second spot with a share of 29.4%, while Apple's iOS, which powers the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch, was third at 14.6%.

But Microsoft will lose its top spot during the next few years as more computing is done through mobile devices, an area of weakness for Redmond but a stronghold for Google and Apple. By 2016, Android will be the number one player in the market, with a share of 31.1%, Windows will have fallen to second spot, with 25.1% of the market, and iOS will remain third, at 17.3%, IDC predicts.

"Android's growth is tied directly to the propagation of lower-priced devices," said Tom Mainelli, IDC's research director for Mobile Connected Devices.

[ Want to make your Android phone or tablet into a smarter team player? See 10 Great Android Apps For Collaboration. ]

"While we expect dozens of hardware vendors to own some share in the Android market, many will find profitability difficult to sustain," said Mainelli. "Similarly, we expect a large percentage of application developers to continue to focus their efforts on iOS, despite the platform's smaller overall market share, because iOS end users have proven more willing to pay for high-quality apps."

IDC expects the overall market for smart connected devices to grow from 916 million units shipped in 2011 to 1.84 billion units in 2016. "In many if not all instances, the smartphone will be the primary connection to the Internet," said Will Stofega, IDC's program director for Mobile Phone Technologies and Trends.

As more computing goes mobile, Microsoft is getting left behind. The company has had only limited success with its Windows Phone 7 platform, despite an alliance with handset maker Nokia, which is costing Microsoft billions of dollars in transfer fees.

Microsoft's share of the U.S. mobile market was just 4.4% as of January, compared to 29.5% for Apple and 48.6% for Google, according to the latest data from Comscore.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll