We’ve known Samsung is the leading Android brand, but now comes word handsets from the South Korean firm account for almost half of the smartphones sold in Europe, where handsets are typically sold separate of wireless contracts. Even more striking, Samsung boosted Google’s mobile operating system to the point it where seven out of each ten smartphones are Android-based in Europe, according to new research.

Of course, this isn’t surprising knowing Android serves a multitude of price points and form factors whereas Apple is content (for now) milking the high-end. So, where’s Apple? Although European market share for the iPhone maker’s iOS is a distant second-place to Android, loyalty to the Apple brand outshines Samsung, the Monday report found…

During the three-month period that ended in May, almost half of all smartphones sold in Europe were made by Samsung, according to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.

As a result, Android’s market share rose to 70.4 percent in Europe markets the U.K., Germany, France, Italy and Spain. During the same period in 2012, Google’s software held 61.3 percent of the European smartphone market.

Here’s a snapshot of UK smartphone sales and OS share.

Kantar Europe smartphones 201305

In Britain, Samsung’s lead is not so clear-cut.

More than a third of Sony Xperia owners previously used Samsung’s Galaxy S2, which helped Sony push its way into the fourth spot. Add Apple’s legendary iPhone retention rates and the Korean corporation may be in for a bumpy ride.

For instance, nearly eight out of each ten iPhone owners are brand loyal. That compares to Samsung’s 59 percent loyalty rate in Britain.

Of course, all of this gives further ammunition for a rumored budget-priced iPhone able to give Samsung even more competition.

Over the weekend, a report surfaced indicating Apple manufacturing partner Foxconn had started shipping the inexpensive iPhone for a pressumed Fall release. If confirmed, this suggests hardware tests are underway for an Apple handset able to compete with lower-priced Android devices.

  • Johnathan Jennings

    If you buy an S4 off of Craigslist, no matter what meet at the AT&T store. Yesterday I talked to the AT&T guy and he told me I was good to buy the phone. I met the guy, got home, and it’s a fake Chinese rip-off. I lost $450. Make sure you are getting what you paid for.

    • Rowan09

      The Chinese ripoffs are really good looking but make sure you turn on the phone first to make sure. The resolution, etc is never the same. Sorry to hear you lost out. Use ebay or amazon, at least your protected.

      • felixtaf

        I got ripped by a fake Galaxy Note 2 in ebay. Since ebay had buyer protection, I got my money back. This clone said Samsung everywhere even in battery and stickers inside. But as soon u turn it on, u will kno for sure!

      • Kurt

        Sad so many people have no morals

      • felixtaf

        Yes… Many of my friends who do craigslist transactions were cheated atleast once in smartphones (Either fake or bad ESN/IMEI after a week or two!

    • Juan Herrera

      Yeah sorry to hear about your getting ripped off , man. It sucks that people can’t just do honest business.. I see them all the time on sale on Ebay, usually just above $500 factory unlocked and as stated by Rowan09, at least you’re protected.

    • DarekSlaby

      Aren’t all samsung phones cheap knockoffs?

  • s0me

    Why?! Because the Iphone is built for the US. You can’t take full advantage of your Iphone here(EU), it depends on wich country you live in. (Siri, Maps, Passbook, lots of apps promoted on Featured are for US)

    • Lnds500

      As are most devices. It’s not that.

    • Guest

      I think a lot has to do with it being an American device. Look at Boston. The police invade homes by gunpoint, illegally searching homes and people and detaining them. all for one 19 year old boy, who was unarmed. Then after he is arrested and shot up. These victims of the police start chanting at a park, “USA, USA, USA, USA”…I only lived about 2 years in the states in the past 12 years, and that was years ago…so I could be wrong.

  • Never seen an iPhone/Apple ad here in The Netherlands. That explains it or me.

    • Martin

      This is very strange for me… In Poland is not so hard to come across Apple ad (iPhone and iPad) and we are a poorer society than Dutch people

    • John Sklikas

      True, I always find ads about Galaxy (S4/S3 it depends) and Vodafone making offers about the S4 in Den Haag (the Hague for non Dutch people) and I’ve never seen an Apple ad. Probably because we have an Apple Store in Amsterdam and there is some brand awareness for Apple here. After all, Apple sends newsletters or ads if you give your email.

  • Martin

    It is only because most of those “smartphones” are not so “smart” – sure, those phones are running Android, but most of Samsungs here in EU are 100 USD phones with very cheap components and hardly capable to call and text.

    • Gorgonphone

      exactly thats the elephant in samsungs sales room…lool

    • critiq

      hardly capable for calling and texting? lmao for sure you are stupid 3:)

      • Martin

        Yeah, and you are so smart insulting someone…
        What I meant was that Android is not optimize for a cheap components. Have you ever used 100 USD Samsung – I did and it was terrible. I would rather use some feature phone than this. Of course I’m not talking here about S4 or other high-ends…

  • Gorgonphone

    awww thats sad i feel sorry for them (even though i am a

  • Akshay Waitforit Doiphode

    the case is different here in india , due to the growing population of hipsters among us , iPhones are selling like hot cakes , and i love iOS too , but i still stick to my blackberry for social purposes

  • Here in Europe, Samesung has much more stores than Apple, and have a lot of deals with carriers, so it’s much more easy to get a Samesung than a iPhone. Plus the low cost and mid range sells are high too. So it’s pretty easy to understand that. Samesung here is the new “Nokia” .. the most well known brand, easy to buy.

  •  José Oliveira 

    Sorry but I doubt these statistics. Whenever I travel, especially during my recent stay in Dubai, I notice that most people have iPhone.

    • Akshay Waitforit Doiphode

      dubai comes in middle east

  • Yash Gorana

    Almost half of European smartphones bear a plastic phone.*