Windows Phone as No. 2 by 2015? Really?
IDC's ambitious forecast for coming Nokia/Microsoft smartphones spurs debate
Computerworld - IDC's surprising forecast that Windows Phone will surge to second place in global smartphone OSes by 2015 -- up from its current fifth place standing -- has some support from other analysts.
While several called IDC's Tuesday forecast "optimistic" for Microsoft's Windows Phone OS, they didn't entirely dismiss the prediction.
The main reason the forecast has some weight is because Nokia, now partnered with Microsoft on Windows Phone, distributed 36% of the 303 million smartphones shipped globally in 2010, according to IDC figures. That share makes Nokia by far the biggest smartphone maker, even though it is relatively unknown in the U.S.
(IDC is owned by IDG, the parent company of Computerworld.)
The 2015 forecast "is not a bad estimate..., but still a stretch," said Rob Enderle, an analyst at Enderle Group in an interview. "Nokia's reach exceeds anybody on the planet, and while they are clearly in distress, they are the most powerful. And Microsoft is throwing more money at [smartphones] and has resources equivalent or greater than Apple."
Windows Phone and Microsoft's earlier Windows Mobile OS finished in fifth place in 2010, according to IDC, making its latest forecast of Windows Phone ascendancy a subject of scorn and criticism by many -- especially Apple iPhone fans, said IDC analyst Ramon Llamas, who explained the forecast in an interview Wednesday.
In the IDC forecast for 2015, Android will be in first place with 45% of the global smartphone market, Windows Phone follows in second with 21% ,with the iPhone in third place with 15.3%. (Android will finish first in smartphones in 2011, IDC said.)
After Apple, BlackBerry from Research in Motion will be fourth with a 13.7% share in 2015, IDC said.
Even with Nokia's prowess for smartphone hardware design, manufacturing and global distribution, some analysts said Microsoft is not a proven player in smartphones. They noted that Microsoft performed poorly with Windows Mobile as a smartphone OS and hasn't performed well with early Windows Phone 7 devices by failing to include copy-and-paste functions at launch time.
"I am not sure I can see that [Windows Phone moves to second place]," said Ken Dulaney, an analyst at Gartner, who gave the most critical appraisal of the IDC forecast from several analysts. "This is predicting that Nokia will resurge past Apple and Android. I just don't think Microsoft has shown that they can get there."
Jack Gold, an analyst at J. Gold Associates, also took note of Microsoft's past performance and Nokia's general weakness in smartphones compared to its more popular -- and lower-priced -- cell phones.
"This [IDC prediction] might come about, but I think the forecast is on the optimistic side given all the turmoil and transitions that need to take place in the next four years to make this happen, and the fact both Nokia and Microsoft need to execute flawlessly -- something they have not been known for in the past," Gold said.
- Sprint to resell Google Apps for Business cloud service
- Samsung's S5 mini: Slimmer and slower than S5, but still scans fingerprints
- Privacy-focused Blackphone starts shipping to early adopters
- Why you shouldn't buy the Amazon Fire phone
- A closer look at the new technologies in Amazon's Fire smartphone
- Amazon's Fire phone is 'Prime' example of customer first
- Amazon's expected smartphone already faces skeptics
- Update: Tizen OS declared 'dead in the water'
- LG's new G3 smartphone: Simpler is better
- LG G3 sports quad-HD screen and laser autofocus
- Enable secure remote access to 3D data without sacrificing visual perfomance Design and manufacturing companies must adapt quickly to the demands of an increasingly global and competitive economy. To speed time to market for...
- The Truth About Virtual Computing for CAD If you're a user of graphics-intensive software such as 3D modeling, simulation and analysis, and visualization, you might be skeptical about moving to...
- Virtually Delivered High Performance 3D Graphics "A picture is worth a thousand words." That old phrase is as true today as it ever was. Pictures (i.e., those with heavy...
- Simplifying Product Design In A Complex World Product design engineering has moved far beyond the confines of ever-more powerful workstations. Companies can't afford to restrict projects to using only local...
- What should I look for in a Next Generation Firewall? SANS Provides Guidance With so many vendors claiming to have a Next Generation Firewall (NGFW), it can be difficult to tell what makes each one different....
- Why Are Customers Really Deploying an NGFW? It seems every IT Security expert is talking about the NGFW, but what are people really doing? This webcast covers 5 real-world customer... All iOS White Papers | Webcasts
Our new weekly Consumerization of IT newsletter covers a wide range of trends including BYOD, smartphones, tablets, MDM, cloud, social and what it all means for IT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!