ABI Research: Android Suffers Its First Market Share Decline

Paul Lilly

The silver lining when you hit rock bottom is there's no place to go but up (actually, you can move sideways as well). Flip those words of wisdom upside down and you have a situation where Android, which has been sitting on top of the world, suddenly has to deal with its first ever decline in market share, according to data released by market research firm ABI Research.

According to ABI research, Apple was the star of the fourth quarter of 2011 with 37 million iPhone shipments for a sequential growth rate of 117 percent, and 128 percent on-quarter, enough to make it the number one smartphone OEM in the quarter.

Android, meanwhile, declined in market share from 52.5 percent in the third quarter of 2011 to 47 percent in Q4, a 5.5 percent drop. It's the only time Android's market share moved in a negative direction, ABI Research says.

There's plenty of room for a rebound. ABI Research says the smartphone market delivered 28.6 percent sequential growth, 48.6 percent quarter-on-quarter growth, and 57.4 percent year-on-year growth, and demand doesn't appear to be on a downswing.

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