Worldwide smartphone sales will reach 468 million units in 2011, a 57.7 percent increase from 2010. By the end of 2011, Android will move to become the most popular operating system worldwide. Furthermore, in 2015, Windows Phone will push past iOS to take second place, according to Gartner.
So what's the déjà vu we're referring to in the title? Well, we heard this exact prediction before just last week, from International Data Corporation. While the exact numbers for devices sold running each mobile OS were different (and both times we refuse to quote them because we don't see how they could possibly be accurate), we think it's very interesting both advisory firms have such similar expectations for 2015. Both believe that fours years from now, Android will be first, Windows Phone will be second, iOS will be third, BlackBerry will be fourth, and Symbian will be in dead last.
Once again, we can't emphasize enough how much is being expected of the Nokia-Microsoft deal. Up until the launch of Windows Phone 7 last year, Microsoft has steadily lost market share. In fact, even with Windows Phone, Microsoft is still losing market share. The new alliance with Nokia, however, is expected to catapult the software giant into second place. It's worth noting that prior to the deal, Gartner had very poor market share expectations for Windows Phone.
Android taking first place worldwide is very possible. The mobile OS just passed BlackBerry and took first place in the US. There's really no reason why it can't do the same worldwide, especially given that it only has Symbian to overtake, and Nokia is slowly phasing it out.
Neither Gartner nor IDC mention HP's webOS, and that's rather surprising. HP plans to have all of its PCs running webOS next year. That could make it easier to sell to developers, but apparently the two analyst companies don't believe that will make much of a difference.