Microsoft has been struggling with Windows Phone 7, now being called Windows Phone 7.5, for market share and recent reports are not looking very good for Microsoft. The most recent reports from Nielsen surveys for the last full quarter is showing Windows Mobile with a US market share of 7% which can be considered as horrible. It is bad because it includes the prior Windows Mobile OS and Windows Phone 7 and with that, Microsoft has a real problem on their hands. For the 3rd quarter being at 7% is not good and when you compare that to the previous Nielsen survey for the 2nd quarter where they had a 9% US market share, they are in trouble.
Windows Phone 7 launched over a year ago in Europe and next week it will be one year since the US launch and since that time, things have moved consistently downward for the latest Windows Mobile. Their market share even globally has declined in a similar fashion to what has happened here in the US. It makes one wonder whether it is too late for Windows Phone 7 to become a factor in the smart phones in the US and around the world. Many may disagree and say that Microsoft is going to be a factor in the future, especially with Nokia phones coming with Windows Phone on them and that may happen, but at the moment, things are not looking very bright.
Given that they are at the one year anniversary and having less than 10% of the US and worldwide market share after a year of decline, the future is not looking like they are going to be in the top 3 in the next few years. Microsoft has formed a partnership with Nokia to have them run the Windows Phone OS exclusively on their phones early this year and that has not provided any returns yet. Nokia has just now announced the first two Lumia phones with the new OS.
Unfortunately, those phones will not be coming to the US until next year some time and their is no date for that yet, so it does not show any promise yet. Microsoft and Nokia need to establish a launch date in the US now in order to generate some excitement for the coming phones. Microsoft must also resolve problems with US wireless carriers where they are not promoting and recommending Windows Mobile phones to potential customers, but instead steering them to some other phone. That is a problem for Microsoft and they must turn that around soon.
For the 4th quarter, it looks like Microsoft’s market share in the US is going to remain below 10% and it could well be that it will also remain below 10% in the global market share. They have bet their future on Nokia and hopefully that is a wise decision for them.