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.

For more information on mobile and tablet markets, read our new GWI Device report, in summary or full client version.


Written by

Katie is a Strategic Insights Manager at GWI. Moving to the company 4 years ago, Katie heads up the Strategic Insights team, overseeing the production of bespoke assets for clients. Katie also writes on GWI's blog, with a particular interest in social media and marketing.

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