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The smartphone wars keep turning up new twists and turns. Last week saw the U.S. release of the Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL ) iPhone 4. We heard from Piper Jaffray that 77% of them went to repeat customers, vs. 56% last year this time. Is the iBubble bursting?
Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM ) reported sales of 11.2 million BlackBerrys. The growth is strong, another 6% from the first quarter. Likely about on par with industry growth, typical RIM, but also in line with statements we've been hearing from other smartphone makers like Nokia (NYSE: NOK ) , Samsung, Lenovo, Motorola, LG, and Sony Ericsson -- the profits are very tight. RIM reported lowered average sales prices and their profits came in less than the Wall Street analysts expected. Is this a sign of the bloodbath? For sure.
The big bomb came from Google (Nasdaq: GOOG ) , which reported that it's now selling 160,000 Android devices per day. That means an annual run rate of 58 million! Just some weeks ago it was 36 million. Now it's 58 million. That pushes Android not just safely ahead of the iPhone (which was running 35 million in the first quarter) but now Android devices have passed BlackBerry (run rate of 46 million currently) to be the second best-selling smartphone OS, behind only Symbian which runs about 70 million. Earlier I had been saying Android can't catch Symbian during 2011; now if this rate keeps up, they will. Massive news.
2010 Smartphone Market by Platform (Estimate on June 28, 2010)
- Symbian (73 Million)
- Android (58 Million)
- BlackBerry (46 Million)
- iPhone OS (35 Million)
- Windows Mobile 6.5 (8.5 Million)
As you can see in this quickly compiled estimate list, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT ) is deeply in trouble. In the past 12 months, they've managed to launch or announce no less than four separate incompatible OSs: Windows Mobile 6.5, Windows Phone 7, the Kin OS (which is somewhere in between), and now a business/enterprise-oriented OS to continue support of old enterprise apps and developers? Meanwhile, rumors say Kin is not selling at all well. While Android rockets past all rivals, what is happening to Microsoft? They are facing emergency action by the WWF as an endangered species ... with nobody to blame but themselves.
Over at Nokia, they say the N-Series is shifting to MeeGo while the remaining about 80%-plus Nokia smartphones will continue on Symbian, including E-Series. Judging from the N-Series sales volume, following the shift of N-Series to MeeGo, this joint venture between Intel (Nasdaq: INTC ) and Nokia could overtake Microsoft in its first 12 months of sales.
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