IDC: Android, iOS to dip slightly in 2018 while Windows Phone to grow slightly

According to a new report from research firm IDC, Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android platform is predicted to maintain the top spot among smartphone platforms this year, with 78.9 percent global market share. That will fall slightly to 76 percent in 2018, IDC said. The research firm also predicts Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS will have 14.9 percent of the market in 2014 and that will drop to 14.4 percent in 2018. As for Microsoft's  (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone, IDC thinks the platform will capture 3.9 percent of the global market in 2014 and that will rise to 7 percent in 2018. That forecast is notable different than the firm's previous forecasts. In 2011, for example, IDC said that in 2015, Windows Phone would command 20.9 percent market share, and in 2012 IDC revised its forecast and predicted that in 2016 Windows Phone would capture 19.2 percent market share. Overall, IDC thinks smartphone shipments will slow to 8.3 percent annual growth in 2017 and 6.2 percent growth in 2018. Release