NZ smartphone shipment stats reveal Android rising faster than Apple

Part of the Android incursion - Samsung's Galaxy SII


First quarter, 2011
Total mobile phone shipments: 320,000 (just under 50% smartphones)

Second quarter, 2011
Total mobile phone shipments: 310,000 (around 58% smartphones)

Source: IDC

In the second quarter (April/May/June), New Zealanders bought slightly fewer mobile phones, according to market tracker IDC. But for the first time, more than half of them were defined as "smart" or "feature phones" such as the Apple iPhone, RIM BlackBerry, Nokia Symbian 3 handsets or those running Google's Android software.

iPhone up 20%
IDC Asia Pacific analyst Lee-Kuan Lau told NBR that iPhone sales grew around 20% over the first quarter and accounted for 15-16% of total NZ mobile phone sales.

Android up 40%
But phones running Google's Android software - made by HTC, Huawei, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Sony-Ericsson and others - grew 40% quarter-on-quarter to claim around a third of the total mobile phone market, Ms Lau said.

Smartphones account for majority of cellphone sales
The stats show New Zealand is catching up with the US and other markets where smartphones - and Androids in particular - have come to dominate sales.

The Android camp includes high-end models like the HTC Sensation, LG Optimus Black, Motorola Milestone, Samsung Galaxy SII (which has sold 10 million units since its April release) and Sony-Ericsson Xperia Arc that match or exceed the iPhone's features - and price.

But the platform's market share success is down to mass market Androids, such as the Huawei Ideos series, that typically sell for $150 and $300 off-contract.

Mobile data use doubles
The surge in smartphone sales has been matched by a sharp increase in mobile internet use.

Vodafone general manager of networks Tony Baird said the carrier's customers downloaded a collective 135 terabytes (135,000 gigabytes) in the 12 months to June this year, compared to 60GB in the year to June 2010.

Read more on the local smartphone market in today's print edition of NBR.

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"But the platform's market share success is down to mass market Androids..."

You can't really compare mass market Androids to an iPhone. Those low-end Androids can't even run Angry Birds smoothly, which I thought would be a reasonable benchmark.

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