While Apple rakes in profits, Google surges on Irish phones
While Apple continues to celebrate historic sales results that is seeing it making an unprecedented €1.2bn per week in profit, Google has overtaken the iPhone-maker for smartphone preferences in Ireland.
Figures from the Dublin-based research organisation Statcounter show that while Apple remains the most popular individual smartphone brand, the combined tally of Android phones have now overtaken it. The figures, which are based on over 7m regular website interactions, show that 48pc of Irish people now use Android phones as online devices, compared to 47pc for iPhones.
The figures are not a guide to sales, but are likely to underestimate the market share of Android phones such as Samsung, Sony and HTC because entry-level Android devices do not connect online in similar numbers to high-end Android phones or iPhones.
The research shows that Nokia continues to struggle, with just 4.4pc of the market here. And BlackBerry is now all but extinct in the Irish market, with just 0.2pc of a presence here.
But although Android may be Ireland's most popular operating system, the iPhone, at 47pc, appears to remain the country's most used smartphone. Statcounter puts Apple's nearest branded smartphone competitor, Samsung, at just 28pc of the market with the next most used phone, Sony, a distant third at 5.5pc. HTC remains just ahead of Nokia, with 5.1pc usage here.
This is a reversal of the trend across the rest of Europe, where Samsung retains a 35pc market share in phone usage compared to Apple's 32pc.
The figures indicate that Apple's handset has a higher market share in Ireland than in much of the rest of Europe, where less a third use the phone. Android, by comparison, is used by at least 59pc of phone users across the continent. And BlackBerry, although tiny, is still alive in the rest of Europe, with a 2pc market share. The once-dominant Canadian smartphone firm's figure is propped up by a 10pc share of the UK market, which saw the handset sell strongly as an entry-level data machine to teenagers three years ago.
Meanwhile, Apple continues to dominate in terms of tablet usage both at home and abroad, with 77pc market share here and 70pc across Europe as a whole. Samsung is the only competitor which retains a double-digit market share, with Android devices overall taking 21pc market share here and 28pc across the continent.
However, the tablet figures do not reflect so-called 'hybrid' Windows devices that incorporate a tablet and a laptop. Such devices, including Microsoft's Surface Pro machines, are counted as PCs instead of tablets.
Statcounter also reveals that Google's Chrome remains Ireland's dominant internet web browser, representing over half of Ireland's web traffic from PCs and 44pc from all devices, including smartphones and tablets. Microsoft's Internet Explorer has shrunk to just 20pc.