Analyst: Android Competing Against ‘Dumb Phones’

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Sometimes analysts release numbers and information speculators take them and turn them into headlines, such as those we saw when Canalys released figures suggesting Android was outselling the iPhone. Often, the real story is buried in the details – or comments, as the case was today.

Aside from headlines declaring Google’s Android sales were beating Apple about the head and shoulders, Canalys analyst Horace Dediu put the figures in perspective. “Android is mostly competing with non-consumption and not iPhone. Android buyers are not choosing between it and an iPhone but between it and a dumb phone,” he writes on the asymco.com blog.


He also points out that Apple’s iPhone sales grew by only 61 percent during the previous quarter because of what the Cupertino, Calif. company cryptically called “channel drain.” In other words, as soon as Apple announced the iPhone 4, the company stopped shipping the iPhone 3GS – which had 90 percent sales growth.

More details to salve the jangling nerves of iPhone owners: Android’s eclipsing of the iOS platform is a matter of geography. While 65 percent of Android sales are made within the US, 70 percent of iPhone sales are outside the U.S. border. Add the fact that U.S. carriers are jumping at Android to compete with the iPhone and RIM and you have even fewer reasons to worry, the analyst said.

We return you now to your rampant speculation.

[asymco]