A recent report from Analysys Mason predicts the numbers of Windows Phone units shipped will jump from 11 million in 2011 to 136 million in 2017, effectively giving the OS a nine percent market share.

The report also predicts that Android will grow to 58 percent market share by the end of 2013 and then hold steady for the following four years, with Apple holding onto 23 percent in 2017.

In a press release, Ronan de Renesse, author of the report, explained that “having a third significant OS player like Windows in the smartphone market would benefit mobile operators because it would reduce Apple’s and Google’s control over the market."

The report further predicts that "Chinese manufacturers Huawei and ZTE will have a combined market share of 22.2 percent of smartphone shipments in 2017, up from 7 percent in 2011." Also, smartphone shipments will rise from "700 million in 2012 (41.2 percent share of total handset shipments) to 1.37 billion by the end of 2017 (70 percent share of total handset shipments)." 

De Renesse also suggest that the very climate of the smartphone is undergoing a shift. 

"Value rather than volume has become a priority for top smartphone vendors," he said. "It results in an overcrowded high-end smartphone segment with huge marketing budgets. Keeping up the pace set by Apple and Samsung will be tough and other manufacturers will require a lot of ingenuity, which we are starting to see,” de Renesse explained.