StatCounter has released their analysis of global market share for smartphone operating systems, and the results are a little surprising. Android had an excellent year, growing steadily and finishing just below iOS. Apple, on the other hand, finished the year down, dropping below Android briefly in late summer, before enjoying a resurgence with the release of the iPhone 4S. BlackBerry had a positively dismal year, as its market share was cut nearly in half – dropping from 15% to 8%. The big surprise is Nokia’s Symbian operating system. Symbian started the year a full 5% above iOS, with a 30% market share. It surged to 33.58% in June before diving again, bottoming out at 29% in October. The last two months of the year, however, saw an amazing recovery as Symbian’s market share shot back up to finish December at 33.63%, just a hair above the June peak. Have a look at the chart for yourself:
Remarkably, most of this growth has come after Nokia’s decision to re-release Symbian under an open source-like license, a decision which followed shortly after the company’s choice of Windows Phone as its “primary smartphone strategy.” Thus while Symbian’s global market share remains strong, Nokia’s committment to the platform appears less so, leaving the future of the world’s single most popular operating system in doubt.