The market researchers at Gartner say that Windows Phone sales have hit a new low relative to the rest of the smart phone market: The system now accounts for less than 2 percent of sales in the most recent quarter.
More specifically, Windows phones now account for 1.7 percent off the worldwide market for smart phones. A year ago, Gartner credited the platform for 3 percent of the market.
“Despite the announcement of Windows 10, we expect Windows smartphone market share will continue to be a small portion of the overall smartphone OS market as consumers remain attracted by competing ecosystems,” Gartner research director Roberta Cozza says. “Microsoft smartphones will mainly focus on driving value for enterprise users.”
So this is obviously bad news. But put in perspective, it’s even worse than you may realize: Sales of smart phones to emerging markets surged 18.4 percent, and that’s one of the three markets Microsoft is ostensibly targeting with Windows phones since its July strategy shift (“capitulation”). (The other two are businesses and enthusiasts.)
And speaking of context, Chinese smart phone maker Huawei saw bigger share gain in the quarter—growing from 5.2 percent of the market, year over year, to 7.7 percent—than Windows phone lost.
Generally speaking, I like to average the numbers provided by both IDC and Gartner. But I don’t expect the IDC numbers—which should be out any day now—to improve matters m