Tesco Mobile, one of the biggest and most successful MVNOs in the United Kingdom has noted a growing trend in sales recently. Have a read of their release this morning:
Tesco Mobile, one of the UK’s leading networks, can reveal that in recent weeks, sales of Android smartphones have surpassed Apple iPhones for the first time, showing that customers are really getting behind Google’s operating system and that 2011 is set to be the year of the Android.
Prior to Christmas, Tesco Mobile witnessed Apple iPhones outselling Android smartphones by two-to-one.
However, January saw a rapid increase in Android smartphone sales which resulted in like-for-like sales, and in February this year Android smartphones overtook iPhone sales on the Tesco Mobile network.
Tesco Mobile attributes the rise of Android smartphones to affordability, fuelled by Tesco Mobile’s wide range of competitive deals on Android handsets. This trend is set to continue to contribute to the rise of Google’s popular smartphone operating system.
Tesco Mobile’s latest announcement comes in the midst of a series of developments in the battle of smartphone operating systems.
In this fast paced and constantly changing market, recent announcements have seen PlayStation herald the imminent launch of its Xperia Play smartphone and Nokia announce that it will be teaming up with Microsoft.
Tesco Mobile’s sales trend also underpins recent statistics released by industry analysts Gartner[i][i] that show global Android sales grew by nearly 900 per cent from 2009. Gartner also reported that 67.2 million Android-based units were sold in 2010, accounting for 22.7 per cent of the market.
Graham Harris, Chief Executive Officer of Tesco Telecoms and Tesco Mobile comments:
“As one of the UK’s leading operators, these sales are a useful barometer for smartphone trends. There is a lot of choice in the market and as a result consumers are driving healthy competition between rival operating systems.”
“Tesco Mobile prides itself on customer service and offering customers what they want, through a wide range of competitive deals on all platforms. In addition to competitive Android smartphone deals, we also offer iPhone on a variety of fantastic 12 month.”
I’m not massively surprised — the key issue is affordability. Android devices are just cheaper. And the more Tesco offers, the more they will ship. Provided consumers aren’t spooked by the mainstream media’s discovery of the platform’s security issues. iPhones are still very, very expensive — especially when you look at the HTC Wildfire (Android) that Tesco sells for £99 on a 12-month contract.