Apple share held steady ahead of iPhone 6 launch


Manufacturer’s sals share in the UK dipped by just 1.6 per cent in the three months to August – almost half the equivalent drop seen last year ahead of the iPhone 5 launch 

Apple’s share of smartphone sales in the UK held relatively steady ahead of the iPhone 6 launch for the three months ending August, dropping by just 1.6 per cent versus July this year.

This is according to the latest smartphone OS sales figures from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, which revealed Apple’s share now stands at 27.1 per cent, down from 28.7 per cent in the three month to July and from 28.2 per cent from the same period last year.

Kantar said the drop in Apple’s share month-on-month was almost half the equivalent seen last year ahead of the launch of the iPhone 5.

Apple was also boosted by the iPhone 5c, which was the best-selling phone in the UK in August with 8.9 per cent share, outselling the flagship iPhone 5s with 7.6 per cent and Samsung Galaxy S5 with six per cent.

However, Kantar said that despite the manufacturer managing to maintain its sales momentum in the run-up to the iPhone 6 release, there are a large number of UK iPhone owners due for upgrade. Of the 13.3 million iPhone owners in the UK, around four million are due for upgrade.

Kantar strategic insight director Dominic Sunnebo said: “Historically in the month before a new iPhone is released, we see a drop in sales share for Apple as users hold out for the new model. However, Apple has managed to limit the drop this year, with its share of sales dipping just 1.6 percentage points versus July this year – almost half the equivalent drop seen in 2013 ahead of the iPhone 5 launch.

“This has in part been achieved through focusing on the iPhone 5c, which tends to attract a slightly less tech savvy buyer, who will be less likely to be holding off for the iPhone 6.

“Even before the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were revealed, 85 per cent of British iPhone owners planned to choose another iPhone at upgrade time. Loyalty has never been Apple’s problem, but attracting customers away from Android has been a problem.

“Before the iPhone 6 was announced, just 13 per cent of Samsung owners planned to switch to Apple, with many choosing Samsung devices because if their larger screens. With this screen size now addressed by Apple with the iPhone 6 Plus, it now remains to be seen how much of a barrier iPhone’s significant price premium will have on people switching to it.”


Elsewhere, Android strengthened its position as the UK’s biggest selling operating system, with share of 61.1 per cent, which was up by 0.6 per cent from the three months to July and by five per cent from a year ago.

Sales share of the Windows Phone OS continued to rise, increasing by 0.4 per cent versus July and 0.9 per cent from last year to now stand at 10.3 per cent.