Samsung's flagship Android device, the Galaxy SIII

The Android smartphone OS has more than 65 per cent of the smartphone market across Europe’s big five countries, up from 42.7 per cent in July 2011, according to the latest data from Kantar WorldPanel ComTech. As the leading Android vendor, Korea’s Samsung has 45 per cent of the European smartphone market, Kantar said.

Android’s success in terms of sales in the 12 weeks to July 8th 2012 reflects the fact that many Apple loyalists are delaying their upgrades in anticipation of the release of the iPhone 5, which is expected to launch in September. Apple’s market share dropped in all of the top five European markets apart from the UK over the course of the year. Britons’ appetite for the iPhone saw Apple’s UK share grow to 22.9 per cent from 20.8 per cent at the same point in 2011.

Apple remains very strong in the US, increasing its market share from 28.7 per cent to 38.2 per cent over the course of the year.

Samsung’s dominance owes much to its multi-tiered smartphone approach, a fact that can get lost amid the noise surrounding high-end flagships like the SIII, according to Kantar’s director of global consumer insight, Dominic Sunnebo.

Meanwhile Research In Motion has seen its share decline in all the markets for which data was released by Kantar apart from France, where its share rose fractionally. RIM’s share in Germany dropped to less than one per cent, from almost four per cent in July 2011.

Smartphone sales by OS, 12 weeks to w/e July 8th, 2012

  UK Germany France Spain Italy USA Australia
Symbian 1.7% 4.1% 2.9% 2.7% 12.8% 0.2% 2.3%
RIM 10.9% 0.7% 9.2% 5.5% 4.9% 3.7% 1.3%
IOS 22.9% 15.3% 14.0% 2.8% 17.2% 38.2% 27.9%
WP 3.5% 4.6% 1.2% 1.2% 4.8% 2.3.% 4.8%
Android 59.5% 71.5% 61.5% 87.1% 54.8% 51.5% 60.5%
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