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Android Getting Close to 50% of UK Smartphone Market

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The latest data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows that Android holds a 48.3% share of the UK smartphone market, followed by BlackBerry (21.2%) and Apple (20.8%). Smartphones made up 68.8% of sales over the 12 weeks, meaning that 42% of people in Great Britain now own a smartphone.

However, with the new iPhone 5 announcement imminent, the current OS picture is likely to change considerably over the next few months.

Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, explains: "When the new iPhone is released there will be a significant bump in sales due to pent up demand, but significantly this boost is not likely to be spread equally across the networks."

While O2's iPhone exclusivity ended some time ago, O2 still holds 45% of all Apple customers in Britain. As O2 was the first network to carry the iPhone, it also has the largest number of people who will be nearing the end of their contract and therefore ready to upgrade. In fact, 38% of iPhone customers on O2 have owned their Apple device for at least 18 months.

Sunnebo continues, "Kantar Worldpanel ComTech's panel shows that iPhone consumers are very loyal when upgrading their device. In Britain, over 70% of iPhone owners who changed their device chose another iPhone. O2 is extremely well placed to capitalise when the new iPhone is released."

Elsewhere, BlackBerry's success in Spain continues unabated, with its share reaching 20.1% in the latest 12 week sales. Symbian's share continues to fall sharply across the board, down to just 6.7% share in GB, from 23.1% one year ago. With a slew of new Windows Phone 7 devices coming in the next few months, Microsoft will be hoping to emulate the relative success being seen in Germany, where Windows Phone 7 devices hold 5.6% of the market.

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Tags: apple iphone  android  blackberry  windows phone  UK