Microsoft’s hardware launch yesterday gave the first glimpses of its latest tablet and mobile offerings, including the much-anticipated Surface Pro 4 tablet, and Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL smartphones. While Microsoft has retained a powerful position in the PC/ laptop market, these new launches will provide another chance to make a mark in the mobile and tablet spaces. So how does Microsoft’s position currently look and what are the prospects for it becoming a genuine player here?
For mobile OS adoption, the figure for Windows (5%) is currently dwarfed by market leader Android (55%) and its closest rival iOS (19%). However, by country, we see some peaks in Windows’ popularity in Vietnam and India, where 13% say their mobile is run on Windows for Phone, and in Poland too (11%).
There is also a market for Microsoft’s new smartphones; 11% of internet users say they would definitely consider purchasing a Microsoft phone. In India, a significant 1 in 5 internet users say this, as do 15% in Italy and Mexico. So the potential for Microsoft to expand its market share is definitely there. That said, these figures are still far behind those for other mobiles brands – globally, 1 in 3 say they would think about buying an iPhone and 29% would consider a Samsung.
Microsoft has made a bigger impact in the tablet market. 4% of internet users are running Windows 7 on their tablet, while another 3% use Windows 8. Combined this puts Windows not too far behind iPad (used by 14%) but still some distance behind market leader Android (19%). Again, Windows’ popularity varies somewhat by country, posting the most promising figures in Mexico and Turkey. Such fast-growth markets could prove fertile ground for Microsoft’s tablets and, while its smartphone ambitions may have to remain limited, there is a clear potential for the Surface Pro 4.