Nokia Accounts For 92% Of All Windows Phone 8 Handsets, And That May Not Be A Good Thing

Microsoft chose Nokia to be the standard bearer for its Windows Phone operating system, and of course now the two companies are married, so it’s no surprise that the majority of handsets running Windows Phone 8 are Nokia devices. However, the actual percentage of Nokia devices running the OS, according to AdDuplex, is a whopping 92%.

According to data that AdDuplex culled from some 2,499 Windows Phone apps worldwide (that are running AdDuplex SDK v.2), only HTC (5.2%), Samsung (1.6%), and Huawei (1/1%) manufacture Windows Phone 8 handsets.

Usually if one company completely dominates a market like this, it’s a good thing, but in this case I believe it may be just the opposite.

Windows Phone 8 manufacturers
Credit: AdDuplex

Apple and Google have shown that you can be hugely successful in the smartphone platform market by employing two different strategies. One is completely vertically integrated, taking ownership of the app store, iOS operating system, and limited lineup of devices while the other relies on a horde of manufacturers to make devices for its Android operating system.

The Windows Phone platform ostensibly should work more like Android, but it’s just more or less the Nokia show. That creates limited options for consumers in terms of handset variety, and that’s not a particularly healthy way for Microsoft to get more users interested in its smartphone platform.

Nokia Lumia 925
Nokia Lumia 925

That’s a shame, because Windows Phone is a good operating system and Nokia makes a lot of great phones, from lower-end devices like the Nokia Lumia 520 to high-end handsets like the 925, 1020, and so on. But essentially, unless someone wants both a Nokia phone and Windows Phone 8, they’re not buying either.

Another stat from AdDuplex that is also perhaps a bit discouraging is that the majority of Windows Phone/Nokia (“WinNo”?) devices in the wild are of the lower-end variety. The Lumia 520 accounts for 30.8% of all Windows Phone devices worldwide, and the only really high-end smartphone in that list is the Lumia 920 at just 8.4%.

Windows Phone 8 devices
Credit: AdDuplex

In the U.S. the percentage of higher-end phones is larger--together, the Lumia 900 (3.1%), 920 (9.7%), 928 (4.9%), and 1020 (2.3%) comprise a solid 20% of all Windows devices--but again, it’s the lower-end smartphones that take the lion’s share. Thus, it seems that when consumers are looking for a high-end phone, they’re not looking very much at Nokia and Windows Phone 8.

Nokia is also responsible for 80% of all Windows Phone devices worldwide. 78.3% of Windows Phone devices have Windows Phone 8 while the remaining 21.7% run Windows Phone 7.