Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Smartphone overview and comparision



A smartphone is a phone that runs a recognizable OS on which the user can install applications.

Some facts:

  • In 2009, about 175 million smartphones were sold worldwide. The market is expected to grow by 90% this year.
  • Android is moving into the mid-range market with devices such as the Vodafone 845that have cheaper, less powerful hardware.
  • Now that Microsoft has released Windows Phone 7, Windows Mobile will disappear.
  • MeeGo was not available at the time of this writing. It is likely to hit the market in the first quarter of 2011.
Smartphone market overview
High-end 20% iOS
Windows Phone 7
BlackBerry OS6
Within the high-end group, users care about web surfing and applications above anything else, and they’re willing to pay for these features.
Business 35% BlackBerry
Windows Mobile
Windows Phone 7
The business group includes phones that companies buy for their employees. The IT department decides which OS can access the company network so that users can retrieve e-mail and browse secure intranets.
Mid-range 45% Android
Windows Mobile
Within the mid-range category, users are interested in music, a good camera, and/or easy texting (which requires a hardware keyboard)—all in an affordable device.
Global browser stats for November, 2010
22% Opera StatCounter lumps Opera Mini and Opera Mobile together. My personal estimate, based on discussion with Opera, is that about 90% of this number is Mini.
22% Safari StatCounter splits up iOS into iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad. It includes iPad stats with the Safari desktop—not in the mobile statistics. Therefore, this figure excludes the iPad.
19% BlackBerry This encompasses mostly the OS5 and older models, which run a browser with a homegrown rendering engine. From OS6 on, BlackBerry uses a WebKit-based browser, and that will make our job a lot easier.
17% Nokia Nokia’s WebKit-based browser comes in various flavors, some of which are better than others. Unfortunately StatCounter does not differentiate between each flavor.
11% Android The Android market is pretty fragmented when it comes to browsers. There are some subtle differences between browsers on HTC and Sony Ericsson devices. Expect problems to arise from these inconsistencies.
4% NetFront NetFront runs mostly on older phones from Asian vendors, notably Sony Ericsson. This figure includes the Sony PlayStation Portable as well as other gaming devices.
1% UCWeb The most popular browser in China. It offers little functionality.
1% Samsung StatCounter lumps all Samsung browsers together, from old NetFront-based phones to the new WebKit-based bada.


The best mobile browsers

  1. Safari for iOS—the best mobile browser overall,
  2. Android WebKit,
  3. Dolfin for Samsung bada—by far the fastest mobile browser, and
  4. BlackBerry WebKit, the new default browser for OS6 and higher. (Currently only available on the BlackBerry Torch.)