A new report from IDC reveals that Android and iOS combined for 91.1 per cent of all smartphone shipments in Q4 2012.
Last year over 497 million Android phones were shipped, an increase of over 100 per cent on 2011. Apple managed to shift 135.9 million handsets.
"The dominance of Android and Apple reached a new watermark in the fourth quarter," said Ramon Llamas, research manager with IDC’s Mobile Phone team. "Android boasted a broad selection of smartphones, and an equally deep list of smartphone vendor partners. Finding an Android smartphone for nearly any budget, taste, size, and price was all but guaranteed during 2012. As a result, Android was rewarded with market-beating growth."
"Likewise, demand for Apple’s iPhone 5 kept iOS out in front and in the hands of many smartphone users," added Llamas. "At the same time, lower prices on the iPhone 4 and the iPhone 4S brought iOS within reach of more users and sustained volume success of older models. Even with the Apple Maps debacle, iPhone owners were not deterred from purchasing new iPhones."
So can Microsoft and BlackBerry realistically make any sort of impact on these two OS giants? IDC’s Ryan Reith believes people do actually want diversity, but it’s not going to be easy to make a dent: "There is no question the road ahead is uphill for both Microsoft and BlackBerry, but history shows us consumers are open to change. Platform diversity is something not only the consumers have asked for, but also the operators."