There’s been a lot of coverage recently on the growth surge of Google Android phones vs Blackberries vs iPhones in the US. In sales last quarter, Blackberries ruled the roost followed by Google phones and then Apple (though Apple still rules total market share).
Many pundits are putting this down to two things: the AT&T carrier lock-in that Apple has, and the fact that competitor Verizon is agressively pushing Android with things like two for one handset deals. Those same pundits also speculate that if Apple were to open up to Verizon, the market share stats would change dramatically.
One way of testing that theory is to look at markets where there is no lock-in, such as here in Australia.
It’s very hard to get “Australia only” stats (unless you want to fork out $500), but from what I could find it looks like Nokia holds the local crown, followed by Apple, then Blackberry. And according to this more recent SMH report, Apple is poised to take Nokia’s position at the top of the pile. In other words it’s quite a different picture to the US market.
Google doesn’t really register yet, no doubt simply because they don’t have the mindshare nor marketing push that the iPhone gets. Walk into any of the four main Australian mobile vendors and you’ll see iPhone promos plastered all over the shop, plus Blackberry and Nokia adverts. Google is far less visible, or has been so far.
Whilst this doesn’t prove anything, it probably does demonstrate that there is some truth in the argument that with more carrier choice the iPhone market would grow in the US. And it will be interesting to watch what happens as Android gets more of a push in the unlocked Australian market.