The Apple iPhone is set to come under threat and Apple’s dominance in the applications and music download market is set to be challenged, claim analysts.
According to research company Ovum, Apple is set to be challenged by both Google with their Android software as well as new devices built on Symbian and BlackBerry platforms.
A new Ovum report claims that mobile application downloads generated by non-operator application stores will grow by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 41 per cent globally over the next five years, with total downloads almost reaching 21.3 billion by 2015. That’s up from 2.69 billion in 2009.
<p class="MsoBodyText">Ovum expects Asia Pacific to experience the highest growth, with its share of the global market set to quadruple from 5 per cent in the early phase to 20 per cent by 2015. This growth will be driven by growing penetration of smartphones in the region coupled with the increased availability of applications with local relevance.</p> <p class="MsoBodyText">According to Ovum estimates, Apple generated a massive 67 per cent of all smartphone app downloads in 2009, despite claiming just 14 per cent of the overall smartphone installed base. Symbian, conversely, commanded a 49 per cent share of the smartphone installed base but only generated an estimated 9 per cent of the total applications downloads market. </p> <p class="MsoBodyText">The report said that in 2015 Apple will generate a relatively modest 22 per cent of app downloads, compared to 19 per cent for Symbian. </p> <p class="MsoBodyText"><st1_personname u2_st="on">Michele Mackenzie, principal analyst at Ovum and report co-author, said: "The iPhone generates the lion's share of smartphone app downloads but over the period we will see the share of application downloads becoming more equally distributed. Over the forecast period other smartphone platforms gain ground and by 2015 the landscape looks very different in terms of market share." </p> <p class="MsoBodyText">Between 2009-15, Ovum expects Google's Android to increase its smartphone base from 5 per cent to 18 per cent penetration and its mobile application download share from 14 per cent to 26 per cent. </p> <p class="MsoBodyText">While BlackBerry looks set to lose smartphone share over the forecast period as newer players like Android move in aggressively, it will more than triple its share of the app download market from 5 per cent to 17 per cent. Similarly, Microsoft loses smartphone share but doubles its mobile application download share. </p> <p class="MsoBodyText">Adam Leach, Ovum principal analyst and report co-author, said that while North America will continue to dominate, its share of the smartphone mobile app downloads market will decrease from 57 per cent in 2009 to 31 per cent in 2015. </p> <p class="MsoBodyText">"Application stores benefit from a vast appetite for applications in this region as well as a growing smartphone base, as well as the fact that the dominant smartphone players have their roots in the North American market", he added. </p>