42 Per Cent of UK Consumers Using a Smartphone

comScore has released figures showing that the 42 per cent of UK mobile consumers are now using a smartphone, compared to 27 per cent a year ago. The figures compare the 3-month average period ending May 2011 with the corresponding period one year earlier, and measure the number of people aged 13 and over who used a smartphone as their primary handset during the periods in question.

The comScore data show that Apple has overtaken Symbian over the past year to become the top smartphone platform in the UK, with a 27.1 per cent market share, closely followed by Android on 26.7 per cent, and Symbian on 22.5 per cent. Android added almost 4.7m new users over the year, an increase of 634 per cent. Research In Motion (RIM) posted a 59 per cent increase, Apple was up by 46 per cent, while Symbian fell by 10 per cent, and Microsoft by 32 per cent.

Following the release of the comScore figures, RIM issued a statement to say that ComScore’s estimate of its BlackBerry subscriber base in May 2011 was “unfortunately inaccurate by a wide margin”. The statement said that while ComScore had estimated that RIM had 3.591m BlackBerry subscribers in the UK at the end of May 2011, in fact, RIM’s UK subscriber base at the end of May 2011 stood at just under 7m subscribers.

It would appear, however, that the two companies are measuring different things. While RIM’s estimate of its UK subscriber numbers are, presumably, accurate, the comScore data does not measure  handset ownership, but rather, how many people have used that type of handset as their primary handset during the periods in question. Hence the difference in the figures.