Windows Phone is growing globally faster than the rest of the pack, according to a new Kantar Worldpanel.
The report points out that Windows Phone has passed up iOS in Italy, moved into a close second in Germany and slid back into third place in the UK.
Kantar says the pivot point for Windows came in 2013 with the release of the Nokia 520 and 620. The focus on entry level and mid-market device helped the OS helped attract many emerging market consumers. Kantar said the move helped Windows Phone to gobble up share from Symbian and BlackBerry and moved it into position to begin eating Android’s entry-level smartphone market share.
Still, Android and Apple hold the overwhelming majority of the global market. According to Kantar, across 12 major global markets, Android ended 2013 with a 70 percent share and Apple held 22 percent.
The boost Windows Phone is getting from entry-level Nokia smartphones could be in some jeopardy, too. Nokia, as rumored, announced its first Android devices at Mobile World Congress. The Nokia X devices retain a look similar to Windows and Asha, Nokia’s entry-level OS, but introduce a curated Android app store.
Despite its rapid global growth, Windows Phone adoption has still been slow in the U.S. In Comscore’s latest U.S. OS market share study, Microsoft’s OS dipped to 3.1 percent from 3.3 percent, just behind BlackBerry and substantially trailing Apple and Android.