Handset cost: a common reason why people go Android

By , Apr 1, 2013

iPhone 5 in Apple Store

Evidence supporting a call for Apple to produce a budget-minded smartphone keeps mounting. The latest evidence: Android’s market share lead over iOS in the US is widening, according to research concluded in February. What once was a 2-point domestic lead for Google’s mobile software in 2012 has stretched to 8 points.

Android now has just over half of the US smartphone market with 51.2 percent of sales, according to a survey by Kantar Worldpanel. That is a gain from 47 percent during the same period a year ago. Apple’s iOS is in second place in the U.S. with 43.5 percent of smartphone sales, a 3.5 percent slip from 2012, according to Kantar…

Although proponents of a resurgent Apple note that the company remains the most profitable smartphone maker, others question whether the firm can delay much longer offering a cheaper alternative.

“This is a fairly strong argument for why Apple must get a smartphone out as soon as it can,” BGR.com writes, commenting on the Kantar numbers.

Whether Apple is in a revenue trough for the next six months or can hurry its exit via a cheap handset for India, the research firm gives Samsung much of the credit for Android’s gains.

Android’s increases were thanks to a large increase in Samsung sales within Sprint,” said Kantar analyst Mary-Ann Parlato. Earlier this year, Sprint discounted Samsung phones, spurring demand for both the handset and the carrier. Others also credited Samsung’s gains for Apple’s slipping market share at home.

The tech blog claims Apple’s US market share “is now slipping fast” as new smartphone buyers opt for cheaper alternatives or are “captured by Samsung’s Galaxy glamor.”

According to Kantar, handset cost was a common reason US consumers gave for purchasing the Android device. The question for Apple is whether it values profit margins over handset sales. Offering a low-cost phone and focusing more on emerging markets (like India) means Apple’s profits will be lower, due to the inexpensive handset and less reliance on subsidized carrier relations. However, increasing volume could also do much to dispel fears of Apple being overrun by Android.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/James-Hart/1553850615 James Hart

    Apple chose profit margin over market penetration in the 1980s, and we saw what happened. If it hadn’t been for the iPod and iPhone, Apple would still be a niche player

    • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

      Sorry but you’re contradicting yourself. iPod, iPhone…and almost every Apple device chose profit margin over market too. Or you’re forgetting that the iPhone, for example, is the most expensive phone out there?

      Apple lost in the late 80’s because Microsoft have made great deals to make windows popular, and some monopoly movements too… but nothing have changed with Apple. They still prefer quality, over quantity. And I hope they never lose that phylosophy. Because when they forgot that, pulling out cheap, low quality products (like cameras, printers, etc..), in the 90’s, they almost went bankrupt!

      • Anon

        Apple is nowhere near the most expensive phone out there. Vertu is by far the most expensive. :X You want a vertu? Pay $20,000 for it. Haha.

      • http://twitter.com/sexyhamthing @sexyhamthing

        And that’s a consumer product?

      • Anon

        Yes. Google also has more information on that crap, but expensive phone.

      • http://www.facebook.com/AKChris82 Chris Williams

        I agree, cheaper isn’t better, it just means that you’ll always have a Template for making Cheap Phones that have many Models. to me it’s about Quality not Quantity.

  • JamesR624

    Really? So every time I check iDownlogBlog now, I’m going to see an article made ONLY to bash android at least once a day now? What happened to this being Apple/Jailbreak? What happened to this site being iDownloadBlog and not turning into iFanboyBlog? I come here for news related to APPLE and the JAILBREAK community, NOT for passive aggressive fanboyism.

    I know this is TECHNICALLY “complimenting” android in this article but it’s more just passive agressive bashing and a desperate attempt to show Android as an inferior OS by insinuating that the “cheap prices” of the phones are the major thing that has contributed to Android’s success. No, it couldn’t possibly be the flexibility, innovation, or increased smoothness and stability of android, it’s all because it’s for cheapies while the “real people” have iPhones.

    Seriously, iDownloadBlog, fire the guy(s) doing these shit fanboy articles and go back to just reporting about things relating to apple and the jailbreak community without the underhanded bashing.

    • RarestName

      “Android’s market share lead over iOS in the US is widening”

      “Android now has just over half of the US smartphone market with 51.2 percent of sales”

      “Apple’s iOS is in second place in the U.S. with 43.5 percent of smartphone sales, a 3.5 percent slip from 2012″

      Yeah, totally bashing Android.

      /s

    • http://www.facebook.com/dietermarkus Markus Hudobnik

      You don’t have to read it then. There is not a lot of news on the Apple/Jailbreak scene right now, so this is better than no article. I like a site that has continuous posts not just one every few days.

    • AndroidFTW

      their just jealus cus they now that android is better

    • Anon

      Did you know you don’t have to read the articles at iDownloadblog? There are many MANY other sites just like it. You’re not obligated to get your news from iDownloadblog. So if you don’t like it, go else where.

    • http://www.idownloadblog.com Sebastien

      I fail to see where we were bashing Android in this post. Maybe you can point it out to me?

      • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

        I’m definite you know the first thing most readers look at before reading an entire article; the title. In case you didn’t know, claiming “handset cost is a common reason why people go android” is an implication that this is another Android bashing article

    • Osorio11

      I find this a very refreshing post,which reflects my own thoughts exactly.

      I have had the pleasure to use alongside an Android Phone and an iPhone 4 for a couple of years and must conclude that, may it be so Apple makes much more beautifully designed handsets of extremely good materials, my Android set was a very reliable and a better”value for money”alternative.

      And as said: Android is getting better and better as IOS seems to be at some sort of stand still in further development , which also if not jailbroken is a very unatractive OS for people who liike to customize their phones to their own likiking and needs.

      Furthermore:have any of you had the privilige yet to play around with the new Samsung Galaxy 4 yet? it is an awesome device, and if I was not happy with my 4s I would surely buy that phone. Concluding: I also get sick and tired of the ongoing Android bashing here: you are on a iDevice dedicated site,and there is no need to say bad things about the the competition, they must do something right, or else they wouldn’t sell so many phones, don’t you agree?

  • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

    You get what u pay for.. . Paying peanuts is all good if you don’t require much, but don’t expect your whole world to move on Android. :P

    • Stanley Traub

      You realize that people mostly buy the mid range phones right? My high end note 2 is more expensive than your crapphone 5 and it is extremely worth it. IM NEVER going back. Android is a freedom for me that is here to stay. Have fun in jail, ermmm …. i mean apples walled garden :-) Oh and dont drop the soap, errm… i mean the iphone. :-P

      • AndroidFTW

        yeah my phone is also mor exspansive than the iphone 5 so its better

      • Stanley Traub

        Hey bro what phone do u have?

      • AndroidFTW

        note 2

      • Stanley Traub

        Hi five! EPIC phone right? Blazing fast too!

      • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

        Android = Freedom? LOL

        You have to be lucky to get updates! You can’t use a fking notification and sms sound, with different sounds and different volumes. You can’t change the font type without rooting your device. To root a device, you need a lot of things to make it, and if they’re available. You’re still

        struggling to get a fast (without ramdom out of sync effects) user interface. You still don’t have a GOOD font type with cleartype to make text look smooth. You still don’t have security at all. You can’t controle what apps can use (like the keyboard apps that can log everything you type)… oh man, stop saying that Android is “freedom” because it’s not, at all….
        iPhone: Jailbreak is easy. Don’t need MOD ROM’s. Costumization on JB devices are very easy. It have quality. Most of features are mature and not unfinished like almost every Android feature (Hey look, we can now have FAST FOLDERS… and “drag&drop” a icon over other…so amazing…) Seriously? Only now? lol… come on, stop spreading FUD that Android is open and it’s better because it’s not at all…. you need to root your device to get a lot of things too.. and guess what? Rooted or not, you still don’t have quality on most of the features and apps too. JAVA -> A big piece of $hit, heavy, needs a lot of ram and cpu, compared to iOS (and Windows Phone too) that can make all the tasks without using such amount of CPU/RAM.

      • AndroidFTW

        android got folder first

      • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

        FUD again? lol.. so typical from fandroids.

        forum xda-developers com/showthread.php?t=878555

        Have a nice day :)

      • AndroidFTW

        its caled app drawer

      • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

        I know app drawer, it’s a app that mimic the app list from iOS or Windows mobile. Like many other apps inside GooglePlay.

        “we are Android, but to get nice user interfaces, we should mimic iOS and Windows Mobile…” and there’s a 3rd party app for that, that not only runs slower than any built-in app out there, that also likes to eat our memory ram to make a simple task, because, once again, to force stop (forever) a background app or OEM launcher, you need to root your device, and if you root it, bye bye warranty. A thing that doesn’t happen to iOS because a simple restore clean the JB.. and sometimes you don’t have to, because Apple already fixed my JB iPhone, like they did from many people out there. The only thing they do is giving you back your iPhone, restored.

      • erod434

        Lol I haven’t laughed so hard in ages, and half of what you say isn’t true. You first say that android does not equal freedom, but yet you criticize it for giving you options to change the way you want it to look. Irony much? Also, you cannot compare jailbreaking to rooting because a jailbreak lasts for one update while a root is permanent. For most android phones there is one click root/unroot applications so wtf are you talking about with the warranty comparison. Also, if you want updates then you should get a nexus device which I think is comparable if not better than the iphone in most ways. I love how the device your using to compare to an iphone is most likely a <100 cheap device, which isn't meant to be comparable to the iphone in anything. That is the power of android, you can choose what you want your experience to be unlike iphone which is one size fits all. You say that there are privacy concerns when you can see every permission you give an app on android while on iphone apps can use your contacts without you even knowing. I bet you cannot name 5 unfinished android features because while I can name several ios one's such as maps and siri. FYI I love ios for my ipad and android for my galaxy nexus with a custom rom which runs 2x faster than my old 4s.

      • Stanley Traub

        Im sorry… i only read a quarter of what u said because everything u said is a flat out lie. You have never touched an android device… let alone seen one. You see… this is what happens when u drop your iphone…errm i mean soap in jail… errm i mean Apple’s walled garden.

      • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

        Yes man, i know.. I never touched an Android device, and actually im jealous because I can’t afford one.

        imgur com/KfvdXeU

      • EpicFacepalm

        iLoledHard

      • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

        HAHA I agree 1000+

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dave-Jen-Burgess/605772300 Dave Jen Burgess

        My high end note 2 was way cheaper then my iphone. And jailbreaking opens the os WAY more than rooting

      • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

        Personally I think the Note 2 is way too big for a phone, I would feel silly holding that monstrosity to my ear. Wouldn’t want to look a twat either. If I need a bigger screen for continuous browsing on the move… the iPad mini suits just fine.

        The average user wouldn’t buy a note 2 of course, don’t think that as an example is what the author was getting at. People just buy Android the majority of time because they just need a phone and don’t care much for features.. .

  • RarestName

    The thing is that flagship Android phones are getting more and more expensive while iPhones have about the same pricing every year. Sooner or later, the iPhone’s pricing would finally be acceptable and might even be cheaper than the flagship Android phones, which by then would cost a lot more. Apple’s profits would drop to the point while its past profits already make up for it, while Android manufacturers’s profits remain consistent. One thing we know for sure is that Apple won’t just lower the pricing for their phones any time soon.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dietermarkus Markus Hudobnik

    The only reason android has the lead is because android has a million devices running its OS. All different price ranges.

    • https://twitter.com/MrElectrifyer MrElectrifyer

      And who to blame for Apple thinking 1 style fits all?

    • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

      Android, with a huge market share and only a few have Android 4.x
      So cute :)

      It’s funny because when we talk about market share, for fandroids all androids count. But if we bash some of them… fandroids will always say that you should get “that device” and not that… and to not blame “Android” because of some devices…

      Double standards at his finest.

  • blu

    Well, I got my iPhone 5 16 gig for $99 over Thanksgiving (a refurb) and am quite happy. Same price (or cheaper) than almost any android phone.

    I have not looked recently, what is the price of a S III vs iPhone 5 (subsidized or not).

  • Mcsquared

    I’m sorry but what is the iPhone 4 and soon to be 4S (When the next iPhone comes out) if not a budget smartphone?

    • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

      Lame argument! Apple do not design or manufacture phones to suit a low end or mid level budget. The fact that the cost of a device is reduced over time (as technology ages this is the norm right?), doesn’t change the fact that Apple only design phones for the high end premium market. Spin it any way you like… it still remains a fact until we see a budget iPhone revealing.

      • Mcsquared

        Lol what??

        The iPhone 4 is fine, there is nothing wrong with it and its free, just because a newer technology is released, it doesnt mean’t the quality of the last iPhone has decreased..

        In 2 years nobody will want the iPhone 5 because its “outdated” LOL..

        What is the iPhone 4 lacking that you want that is in the iPhone 5?

        We all want Apple to release a phone that will blow its competitor’s out of the water, we all want Apple to make a phone thats 5 years ahead of its time like the first iPhone, and thats what Apple is working on (atleast we hope?)

        Lets say that they choose to release a “budget” iPhone this summer, what new features would you want from it that is not currently in the iPhone 5? or would you expect it to be better than the iPhone 5 at all?

        You want a cheaper iPhone but you want it to be better than the previous version, thats not wanting a “budget iPhone” thats wanting them to “take one for the team” and lose profits so consumers can save a quick buck. You want a samsung phone..

        Apple is a high-end company that makes high-end products. They aren’t in the budget-technology industry (which is completely different form high-end technology industry). Its like the difference between making cheap hershey chocolate or making the fancy expensive chocolate. Android phones are the hersheys chocolate (or they used to be anyway, I admit they are improving) and Apple is the high-end fancy chocolate.

        Every single new iPhone is just an upgrade from the latest version, its not a completely new product. Therefore, when there is a newer version, the older version reduces price and becomes the “budget” version.

        There usually never room for an “inbetween” 2 consecutive iPhones.

      • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

        Not sure about you but after having owned the iPhone 4 I want something abit different, in terms of design and operating system the iPhone 5 was the logical upgrade. Nobody is saying the iPhone 4 has gone down in quality, it’s abit like buying an old BMW 3 series after the new series comes out, the old just isn’t as appealing anymore.

      • Mcsquared

        Ok.. Sounds like you want one of 2 things..

        One- You want apple to reannounce the current iPhone 5 when they announce the next iPhone and call it the “budget iPhone” and make it cheaper.

        Two- “After having owned the iPhone 4 I want something abit different”

        You want an Android phone with the apple sticker on the back.
        The iPhone 5 and the iPhone 4 are the same OS. The only difference is a taller screen and better material used in the iPhone 5. If you are saying you want that material in your budget iPhone then you need to wake up and smell the coffee. Thats what makes the iPhone expensive. If you are saying you want the bigger screen, then from what I hear, the new Samsung Galaxy is whats “hot”. ANd I heard you could get it for a bargain compared to the iPhone price.

      • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

        I know what I want, iOS. Never Android.

        Do I appreciate the bigger screen and use of metal rather than glass, sure.

        I see the iPhone 5 as more of the same but only even better than before, it’s an upgrade. Sometimes it’s not about what one needs, but what one wants. I like to have the latest idevices, as for the Note 2, you can keep that crap to yourself.

      • Mcsquared

        Ok… so get the iPhone 5. Problem solved lol

      • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

        Indeed, I order all my Apple products direct from Apple the moment they appear on the website, none of this locked on carrier business or waiting in line on day of release. Always managed to get before stock runs out.

  • http://twitter.com/sexyhamthing @sexyhamthing

    I chose android over ios because i cant stand ios, simple as that

    • Stanley Traub

      It goes to show how SIMPLE it is to hate a SIMPLE OS :-P

      • iospixel

        I can’t agree with this. Without Springtomize, Foldericons Beta, Ayecon & my various own transparency/lock screen tweaks iOS is ugly for me. I don’t hate it, but when making the choice to make my 5 the primary phone over my 4s at its release it was deeply missed. The refreshing feel of going back to the stock look of iOS is nice but its not something I could keep up. It’s just too stale. As an owner/user of both many android and iOS handsets and devices I have to say I do like Android on tablet. Especially during that period without a JB available.

    • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

      android sucks…. POS phones fro folks who dont care what phone tay have…lol

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=604885391 Richard Borkovec

    Do these “analysts” forget about the free iPhone with contract? Or how about StraightTalk (w/ Walmart Credit card) and TMobile’s monthly payments now? These are things that help any company sell their products.

  • chris125

    Yet you can get an iPhone for free yet this is always the only thing apple uses is people only buy because its cheap

  • Nesar

    It’s a shame that Apple had to be soo greedy. Its costing Apple just £150 or Less to build an iPhone and yet they are selling for over £530 a handset their pricing is way too wrong no wonder people are moving to android and Apple are loosing its market share.

    • http://www.facebook.com/tafk1 Taf Khan

      Quality costs, it’s as simple as that. Do you see Porsche lowering prices on a 911 to compete with a Ford? Same thing.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

    exactly same reaSon they go to toyota instead of BMW cause its cheaper even though they real want the BMW and the iphone..loll they settle for toyota and android cause it cheaper..

  • MvP77

    Also if your willing to wait a couple months you can catch a high end Android on sale from amazon. Got my Note 2 for $100 on contract. $200 off the normal price. I never see iPhones on sale unless refurbished.

    • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

      LOL @ “a high end Android ” hahahahhhahahahahahahah

      • MvP77

        And of course you have the typical iSheep who are the worse fanboys of all. I’ve owned the last 3 iPhones and while its good for what it does I’m more happy with android ( would never replace my iPad though.) I can see how you would think there is no such thing as a high end android phone though. Quad core, 2gb of ram. Battery life that blows everything else out the water. Sd card expansion. Customizable.720p amold screen WTF was I thinking getting it for $200 less than the normal price??