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Android increases its grip, nothing else changes much

And you shouldn't worry too much if you're called Apple either. Such is the regularity of Apple's Summer announcements that the market expects a lull in the quarter before a launch - its numbers will likely surge if and when a new iPhone(s) and iPad(s) are revealed in the coming months.

As expected, though, Android is out front and still drawing away (albeit slowly - not much more share to gobble), with a 79.3 per cent share of the global smartphone market in Q2 of this year.

By now of course (according to none other than IDC itself), Windows should be readying itself for the final push into second place. That was according to numbers IDC bandied about a couple of years ago (in mid 2011, see - Windows Phone 7 is shrinking its way to the No. 2 spot by 2015) when it predicted that by 2015 Microsoft's Windows OS would be ranked at number two in the market - still behind Android but ahead of Apple and RIM (as was).

Only 18 months to go to 2015 and little sign of any late Microsoft surge. At the time IDC's projections were seen as perplexingly optimistic. Today they just look absurd.

Top Smartphone Operating Systems, Shipments, and Market Share, 2013 Q3 (Units in Millions)

Operating System

2Q13 Unit Shipments

2Q13 Market Share

2Q12 Unit Shipments

2Q12 Market Share

Year-over-Year Change

Android

187.4

79.3%

108

69.1%

73.5%

iOS

31.2

13.2%

26

16.6%

20.0%

Windows Phone

8.7

3.7%

4.9

3.1%

77.6%

BlackBerry OS

6.8

2.9%

7.7

4.9%

-11.7%

Linux

1.8

0.8%

2.8

1.8%

-35.7%

Symbian

0.5

0.2%

6.5

4.2%

-92.3%

Others

N/A

0.0%

0.3

0.2%

-100.0%

Total

236.4

100.0%

156.2

100.0%

51.3%

Source: IDC

But of course it's really the same old boring Android story: another quarter another 100 - 200 million Androids as Samsung in particular continues to take the global market by storm. It has significant help from the likes of LG, Huawei, Lenovo, and ZTE, which each recorded double-digit shipment volumes and together accounted for 62.5 per cent of all Android-powered smartphone shipments during the quarter.

Still putting a brave face on the Windows fiasco, IDC points out that MS posted the largest year on year OS increase, which still seems like painting a slightly too-rosy picture - we're talking about a tiny little single digit market share, just ahead of Blackberry with Nokia now the only major vendor.

Blackberry, says IDC, saw its market share decline during the quarter, reaching levels not seen in the history of IDC's Mobile Phone Tracker. While the 'others' are fading right out. Symbian, still selling 6.5 million units in Q2 last year (more than Windows) but now at vanishing point, and Linux, once held as a likely contender in the smartphone OS race, now finally fading out.

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