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Some interesting AU Windows Phone ownership stats..

with 2 comments

A couple of weeks ago I updated a couple of my popular Aussie Windows Phone sports apps (AU Footy 2013 + AU League 2013) to support Live Tiles (via Azure/WNS Push Notifications) – and a quite a number of the existing users have enabled it since receiving the update.

As part of the subscription process (invoked when a user nominates to receive live tiles), the system has been collecting (non personal) information on the Windows device being used (in order to target the required specs/resolutions for the live rendered tile images and content).  This information includes the device Manufacturer/Model and the current Windows Phone o/s version (ie. whether they are running 7.1, 7.8 or 8.0 etc).

I’ve been monitoring these stats (via a stats page I drummed up) and was somewhat surprised at the results I was seeing. Over past few days these stats have stabilized somewhat – with the %’s starting to stay pretty fixed even though many users were still signing up (so from this I think I’ve got a pretty good/representative sample size at this point).  The second of these apps (AU League 2013) was delayed by Marketplace certification woes – so although that’s only just been made available – the stats coming in from that app are pretty much identical to the Footy app (and are included in the overall sample).

Apart from the curiosity factor of seeing what’s up in the Australian WP marketplace – these stats of course are invaluable as a planning tool for what WP Devices/Versions and resolutions I need to focus on for upcoming new Apps + App updates.

NB: These apps (AU Footy 2013, AU League 2013) support all current versions of Windows Phone (7.1 through to 8.0) including LMD (Low Memory Device) handsets – so no users/devices were excluded from being able to download or use these apps (available to 100% of devices which can install apps from WP Marketplace).  One important requirement to be included in these stats however were that they had purchased the app.

tldr stats analysis

Of my subscribed users/devices surveyed – WP8 now has 80% share and of the remaining 20% less than a quarter of those are running 7.1 (everyone else has 7.8). It appears everyone loves and buys Nokia handsets (87% of market)  – in particular the Lumia 920 (56.2% of all devices) – however budget WP handsets have failed to bring any sizable boom in app sales.

Read below for breakdowns of these stats and thoughts….

Windows Phone O/S Breakdown.

The primary interest I had in analysing these stats was to know what %’s of the market have the different WP O/S versions. As an App developer, this is important to me as there’s currently some tough choices and tradeoffs you need to make when deciding what you will target. For example – if you develop a WP8 app you get a lot of extra API functions like lock screen support (that customers are crying out for) – but at the same time you eliminate anyone with WP7 handsets from your potential customer base.

Of devices surveyed here are the breakdowns (percentages round up to 1 decimal place so may not equal 100%).

Windows Phone O/S Percentage of Surveyed Users
8.0 79.1%
7.8 16.4%
7.1 (aka Mango) 4.5%

After a year of a lot of device fragmentation since launch – it looks like WP8 is really starting to become the platform to target – with almost 80% penetration.  This is pretty good news for developers (and users with 8.0 handsets).  The other good news is if developers want to include support for new wide + small tiles in Apps – over 95.5% of devices will be able to use them (ie. those with 7.8 and 8.0 handsets).

Note that some of the 7.1 devices simply don’t have a 7.8 update available (and may never will) – but it’s good to know that ~80% of 7.1 users have updated their handsets so far.

Windows Phone Manufacturer Breakdown.

Knowing which manufacturers are moving handsets is probably more of a curiosity – however the results were quite surprising. Whilst  it was probably pretty obvious Nokia was the dominant player in the WP space – I hadn’t realized just how large this market share was.

Of devices surveyed here are the breakdowns (percentages round up to 1 decimal place so may not equal 100%).

Manufacturer Percentage of Surveyed Users
Nokia 87.1%
HTC 11.1%
Samsung 1.6%
LG 0.2%

Yes – you read that correctly – Nokia have a massive 87.1% of the WP market – a staggering lead (and well deserved). Everyone else is an ‘also ran’ with HTC making the only meaningful indent into the market.

Windows Phone Handset Breakdown.

Again quite a few surprises here.  From the figures observed – it seems that the high end devices are definitely the ones of choice for users  – and the budget handsets from Nokia + HTC seem to be hardly making any indent at all.  It turns out over half of the market actually own Nokia Lumia 920’s – that’s awesome!

Of devices surveyed here are the breakdowns (percentages round up to 1 decimal place so may not equal 100%) – here are the Top ones..

Handset Model Percentage of Surveyed Users
Nokia Lumia 920 56.2%
Nokia Lumia 800 10.7%
Nokia Lumia 820 8.8%
HTC 8X 4.7%
Nokia Lumia 925 3.2%
HTC Mozart 2.4%
Nokia Lumia 620 1.9%
Nokia Lumia 520 1.6%
Nokia Lumia 900 1.5%
Nokia Lumia 710 1.5%
Nokia Lumia 720 1.1%
HTC HD7 1%

Other handsets with Marketshare of 0.5-1% included : HTC Radiant, HTC 8s, Omnia 7, Samsung ATIV S, HTC Titan, Nokia Lumia 610…   Many other handsets showed up in the sample too – but had such small numbers I won’t mention them here.

At least one user had a Nokia Lumia 1020 (I’m very jealous).

However, I was somewhat disappointed by the really low numbers for the budget WP devices (such as Lumia 6xx/5xx devices and the HTC 8s) – which only accounted for around ~5% of the sample.

As a WP developer – I like others was looking forward to the anticipated growth in WP market share that these devices were going to bring (which would of course – we hoped – mean lots of new users and potential customers). These figures tell me something completely different though – it’s not made a whole lot of difference to my revenue as a developer – and that’s not great news.

Keeping in mind that this sample is of users who have paid for my app – live tiles aren’t available to trial users and there’s no free version – there’s a couple of potential conclusions I can make. Either not many of these devices are being sold – or potentially more worrying (and maybe more likely) –  the people that buy budget handsets don’t buy Apps (as they are on a budget / can’t afford it or can’t meet necessary payment requirements).

Again – neither of these conclusions are a win for developers – and also makes me question the value in spending a lot of time optimizing apps for LMD and other low end devices.

I’d love to see some figures like this from developing markets (and free apps) – as these would be far more influenced by the affordability of apps vs the average disposable income (and would further help determine if a large influx of budget WP handset owners does actually result in large increase in sales of Apps).

Windows Phone Screen Resolution Breakdown.

Something again quite important for developers to consider is to ensure they target the available resolutions on devices (so High Resolution 720p/WXGA devices aren’t using low resolution image + media assets).

There wasn’t too many surprises here (given the dominance of the Lumia 920 which does WXGA resolution). The bad news is the low resolution WVGA devices still make up a pretty large slice of the market (so developers won’t be able to dump your low resolution graphics assets from apps just yet).

Of devices surveyed here are the breakdowns (percentages round up to 1 decimal place so may not equal 100%) ..

Screen Resolution Percentage of Surveyed Users
WXGA (720×1280) 59.4%
WVGA (480×800) 35.1%
720p (1280×720) 5.4%

Other Stats…

As part of storing Live Tile Push configurations for users on the server – I have also been inadvertently tracking what teams people barrack for (as the server needs to know what team tiles to issue as part of the payload).

I probably haven’t got enough users on board for the NRL app (update only appeared yesterday) but those of you who are into AFL footy will be interested (or disappointed) to learn that the most popular teams are –   Essendon (~15%), Collingwood (~12%), Carlton (~12%), Hawthorn (~10%), West Coast Eagles (7%).  I guess the Essendon supports have quite a lot of live news requirements right now so this app may be more important to them 8P.

I hope you found this enlightening – probably only of interest if you’re an app developer or an Aussie WP enthusiast – and I’ll continue to monitor these stats in future and see how my customer base evolves in the Australian market.

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Written by mobilewares

August 24, 2013 at 10:20 am

2 Responses

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  1. I have just come back from a Harvey Norman conference and I can tell you that the 520 has almost overtaken the 920 in sales. The demographic for the 920 is a lot different to the 520.

    ivabiggun71

    August 24, 2013 at 2:15 pm

  2. […] last year I blogged about what types of devices were using my 2013 sports Apps – and noticed a few interesting trends which helped me plan better for this year’s […]


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