Mobile Market Share Not Equivalent to Usage Share
While some people online stop at overall market share when comparing products, I am more concerned with their usage in the real world. I decided to look at sales numbers for Android and iOS devices in correlation with both their online market share and Black Friday sales numbers to see how they stacked up. What I found was rather interesting.
Device Sales (%)
|Platform||Global 1 2||US 3 4 5|
If we were to look solely at sales numbers, it becomes apparent that Android not only beats iOS in both US and global markets, but manages to own over half of the total device sales in both categories. Although Android’s US margin is less than half (36.9%) of its global margin, it is still obvious that Android is clearly in the lead.
Online Market Share (%)
|Platform||Global 6||US 7|
Online market share paints a different picture. While Android definitely leads in sales, iOS has no problems owning online market share for both global and US users. Correlating these numbers with the device sales figures above, we see that iOS users are 11.3x more likely than an Android user to access the internet on their devices globally, and 3.4x more likely in the US.
Black Friday Sales (%)
Black Friday sales also paint an interesting picture, where purchases made via an iOS device were 3.4x those from an Android device. Correlating these one-day sales numbers with the US device sales figures above, we see that iOS users were 5x more likely than Android users to make a purchase on Black Friday via their devices.
Although Android devices are clearly beating out iOS devices from an overall sales-figure perspective, it is apparent that iOS users are considerably more likely to use their devices to access the internet and purchase items.
|Online Market Share - Global||11.3x|
|Online Market Share - US||3.4x|
|Black Friday Sales||5x|
What I can deduce from these numbers:
- Focusing solely on overall sales figures is narrow-sighted and ignores real-world usage
- iOS users—as a whole—are more likely to utilize the internet-capabilities of their devices when compared to Android users
- If you are targeting mobile users, make sure it works on an iOS device
Update: The original Device Sales figures only included phones. I have updated my figures to now include tablets.
IDC: Android Marks Fourth Anniversary Since Launch with 75.0% Market Share in Third Quarter, According to IDC ↩
IDC: Android Tablets Gain Momentum in the Third Quarter, Expectations Remain High for the Holiday Quarter, According to IDC ↩
comScore Reports September 2012 U.S. Mobile Subscriber Market Share ↩
Device Ownership | Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ) ↩
Apple vs. Samsung Trial Forces Companies to Open Up the Books ↩
NetMarketShare - Mobile/Tablet Operating System Market Share Q3 2012 - Global ↩
NetMarketShare - Mobile/Tablet Operating System Market Share Q3 2012 - US ↩
Early Promotions Drive Record Online Sales for Thanksgiving, Fuels Black Friday Retail Surge, Reports IBM ↩