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Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

February 7, 2013 at 12:33 PM

Canalys: Worldwide Windows Phone market share flat in Q4 2012

More not-so-great news for Windows Phone: Research firm Canalys has released its findings for fourth quarter 2012 worldwide smartphone shipment market share and it says Windows Phone’s share remained unchanged from the third quarter at about 2 percent.

That’s even with the launch of Windows Phone 8 in early November and the holiday shopping season.

Earlier this week, research firm comScore had released findings showing that Microsoft’s share of U.S. smartphone subscribers had declined in the fourth quarter.

According to Canalys, Android handsets continued to dominate in the fourth quarter, reaching 69 percent of the 216.5 million units shipped (though that was down from 74 percent in the third quarter). Apple followed with 22 percent, up from 15 percent in Q3, driven largely by the iPhone 5.

Broken down by vendor, Samsung led, shipping nearly 63 million units for a 29 percent market share for the quarter. Apple was second with 22 percent share and Huawei third with a 5 percent share.

For all of 2012, Samsung shipped 210 million units, while Apple in second place shipped 136 million ,and third-place finisher Nokia shipped 35 million, according to Canalys.

“BlackBerry, Microsoft and Nokia, as well as other Android vendors, have strategies and devices in place to attack, but the task is daunting, to say the least,” Canalys analyst Pete Cunningham said in a news release.

Here’s Canalys’ chart (the “OHA” listed under “OS Vendor” in the chart on the right stands for “Open Handset Alliance” and currently comprises only the Android platform):

CanalysSmartphoneQ42012.JPG

That’s the second piece of worrisome news about Microsoft that Canalys has delivered this week.

On Wednesday, Canalys had released its findings showing the continued growth of the tablet market — another market MIcrosoft is desperately trying to gain a foothold in.

But Microsoft’s launch of Windows 8, Windows RT and the Surface tablet, which was intended to provide that foothold, didn’t do so well, according to Canalys.

According to the research firm’s news release:

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Microsoft struggles with pads — only 3% of pads shipped in Q4 2012 used a Microsoft operating system. The software giant’s entry into the PC hardware market was something of a non-event. High pricing, poor channel strategy and a lack of clarity regarding its RT operating system led to shipments of just over 720,000 units.

 

“The outlook for Windows RT appears bleak. Hardware OEMs are ignoring it due, in part, to a pricing strategy that does not align with the economics of the pad market,” said Tim Coulling, Canalys Senior Analyst. “We expect Microsoft to rethink its pricing strategy for RT in the coming weeks. Dropping the price by 60% should get OEMs back onside.”

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