Report: Android slowly losing market share

Posted by Trent Nouveau

Android's rather sizable share of the U.S. smartphone market declined slightly from 52.4% to 49.5% last quarter.

Although it is probably far too early to draw any real conclusions from the above-mentioned data, at least one analyst believes Android's downward spiral will continue to accelerate. 

"In our opinion, this is just the beginning of Android's share loss in the U.S.," Needham & Co. analyst Charlie Wolf wrote in an investors note obtained by AppleInsider.

While Wolf predicted Android would regain market share duringJune-September, the analyst emphasized a "material decline" is likely to begin in the December quarter following the launch of Apple's long-awaited iPhone 5.

Wolf also blamed Android's slight market dip on sales of the iPhone 4 via Verizon's Wireless network, and speculated "the iPhone could launch on the Sprint and T-Mobile networks this fall" - granting Apple yet another significant boost in share.

However, Wolf did concede that Android is "well positioned" in two huge markets: Asia Pacific and the Rest of World regions.

In sharp contrast, Apple is "faced with the challenge" of building an iPhone Lite for prepaid markets like China - where the wildly popular smartphone has yet "to scratch the surface" of the Chinese market which boasts an estimated 896 million mobile phones.