iPhone still leads in Singapore: AdMob

iPhone OS is also the leading OS in Australia and HK

THE iPhone still leads the pack of smartphones in Singapore, according to a recent report on the growth and usage of mobile Internet by AdMob, one of the world’s largest and fastest growing mobile advertising companies.

According to the report, handsets running the iPhone OS (operating system) have been some of the most sought after mobile devices in Singapore since October 2009, with an increase of almost 200 per cent in unique devices.

As at March 2010, the iPhone OS accounted for 89 per cent of smartphone traffic in Singapore, forming a significant proportion of marketshare.

The iPhone OS is also the leading OS in Australia (88 per cent) and Hong Kong (78 per cent), based on March 2010 traffic share.

Singapore also had the highest traffic from smartphone devices at 84 per cent of the first quarter of this year, rising 7 per cent from Q4 2009, despite traffic from smartphone devices in South-east Asia decreasing by 2 per cent to 38 per cent. Vietnam showed the weakest traffic from smartphone devices at 20 per cent, declining 2 per cent.

This quarterly South-east Asian mobile metrics report released by the company tracks the growth of mobile devices and usage, as well as manufacturer share trends, smartphone operating systems share and other devices in South-east Asia, Australia, and India in the first quarter of 2010. It then aggregates the data collected to provide insight on major trends in the mobile ecosystem.

For the first quarter this year, ‘there has been tremendous growth in the mobile Internet market regionally, with different reasons driving each market’, Jeff Merkel, AdMob’s vice-president and managing director of Asia-Pacific and Latin America, told BizIT. While smartphone devices, in particular iPhones, are strong drivers for the Singapore, Hong Kong and Australian markets, the Nokia platform remains dominant in India and Indonesia.

Commenting on Singapore’s outlook for the rest of the year, Mr Merkel said that ‘growth prospects are positive despite its limited population’, citing ‘improved data plans and rich and interesting mobile content’ as key drivers.

Mr Merkel also said that HP’s (Hewlett Packard) recent move to acquire Palm, a provider of smartphones powered by the Palm webOS mobile operating system, will prove ‘challenging in this competitive market.’

Nonetheless, he noted that Palm has an ‘interesting user interface, and it would be interesting to see how it can be made use of.’

According to the report, the Nokia N70 is the most popular smartphone device in countries such as the Philippines and India. It uses the Symbian OS, which is the most popular operating system in the region and accounted for 62 per cent of smartphone traffic in the first quarter this year, despite a traffic share drop of 4 per cent.

The iPhone OS came in second at 33 per cent of Q1 2010 smartphone traffic, up from 30 per cent in Q4. Jointly, Symbian and iPhone OS account for a 95 per cent share, down one per cent from the last quarter of 2009.

According to the report, manufacturers in South-east Asia, not including Nokia, Apple and SonyEricsson, accounted for 26 per cent of traffic, an increase from 21 per cent last quarter. LG and Motorola, both at one per cent each, gained significant traffic share.

Despite leading the manufacturer share, Nokia showed a loss of market share from 52 per cent to 47 per cent, while Apple had 15 per cent and SonyEricsson had 11 per cent of the traffic share based on Q1 2010 traffic. This data is extrapolated from AdMob’s mobile ad network and only looks at smartphone share.

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