Kantar: later iPhone X release hurts Apple’s smartphone share

The latest smartphone operating system data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech says that in the three months ending in October, iOS share fell in key markets, “making clear the impact of the flagship iPhone X not being available to buy in the month of October.”

As Windows continued to drop in share, Android was able to gain 4.3 percentage points in the big five European markets, 8.2% in the U.S. and 7.5% in Japan, adds the research group. Urban China remained a bright spot for Apple, with its share edging up 0.5% in the latest three months to reach 17.4%.

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“It was somewhat inevitable that Apple would see volume share fall once we had a full comparative month of sales taking into account the non-flagship iPhone 8 vs. the flagship iPhone 7 from 2016,” says Dominic Sunnebo, Global Business Unit Director for Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. “This decrease is significant and puts pressure on the iPhone X to perform. Considering the complete overhaul that the iPhone X offers, consumers may be postponing their purchase decisions until they can test the iPhone X and decide whether the higher price, compared to the iPhone 8, is worth the premium to them.”

As of October 2017, 35.3% of Apple’s installed base customers across Europe and the U.S. had owned their iPhones for more than two years – up from 30.1% a year earlier and signifying considerable pent-up demand within Apple’s base, he adds. In pure value terms, it is likely the iPhone X average selling price will more than make up for a dip in sales of older iPhone models,” Sunnebo said.