Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) maintained its dominance in the U.S. smartphone market over the summer, according to the latest figures from research firm comScore. Given the boffo opening sales weekend Apple had for its new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, that lead is likely to swell through the fall.
According to comScore, 174 million people in the U.S. owned a smartphone during the three months ending in August, which translates to a 72 percent penetration rate, up 3 percent since May. Apple was the top smartphone OEM, with 42 percent of U.S. smartphone subscribers, up fractionally 0.1 percentage points from May. Samsung Electronics came in second with 28.9 percent market share, up 1.1 percentage points--a rise that could be attributed to the launch of its Galaxy S5 smartphone and related variants in the United States during the summer.
LG Electronics had 6.7 percent U.S. market share, up 0.2 percentage points from May; Motorola had 5.4 percent (down 0.9 percentage points); and HTC came in at 4.5 percent (down 0.6 percentage points).
Despite Apple's lead among smartphone makers, Google's (NASDAQ: GOOG) Android platform remained the top U.S. smartphone OS in August, according to comScore, with market share of 52 percent. Essentially, all of the smartphone OS platforms had flat market share in August compared to May, with Apple's iOS at 42 percent, Microsoft's (NASDAQ: MSFT) Windows Phone up fractionally to 3.5 percent from 3.4 percent in May and BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) flat at 2.3 percent.
The figures underscore the challenges that Microsoft and BlackBerry continue to face in stealing away market share from Android and iOS, especially in the U.S. market. Nonetheless, in efforts to juice their position, Microsoft recently partnered with HTC to put Windows Phone software on HTC's flagship One M8 smartphone, and BlackBerry just unveiled its square-screened Passport phone aimed at the enterprise market.
However, with the new iPhone launches and Samsung's introduction of its Galaxy Note 4, smartphone competition is only stiffening.
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