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HindustanTimes Fri,29 Aug 2014

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Samsung taking a bite out of Apple in Europe
AFP
July 03, 2014
First Published: 10:52 IST(3/7/2014)
Last Updated: 10:54 IST(3/7/2014)

Despite its reputation for creating almost fanatical levels of loyalty and devotion among its customers, some iPhone users are moving over to Android thanks to the Samsung Galaxy S5.

The latest smartphone sales data from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech shows that Samsung's latest flagship phone has no shortage of admirers, particularly in Europe.

In May, the first full month that the handset was widely on sale in Europe and the US, the Galaxy S5 became the third best-selling handset in the UK (behind the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C), and across the five major European markets, 17 % of consumers that bought the handset dumped their iPhone to do so, while just over half (58%) were upgrading from an existing Samsung phone.

In the US, the phone was the second most popular handset behind the iPhone 5S, and, despite loyalty to Apple being at its strongest in its native America, former iPhone owners made up 8 % of the handset's sales for the month. However, according to Kantar, the majority of Galaxy S5 buyers in the US were former LG or HTC handset owners.

The figures mean that for the month of May, Android represents 73.3 % of the European smartphone market with Apple in a distant second with a 16.6 % share and Microsoft in third with 8.1 %.

In the US, combined handset sales across all models saw Samsung become the biggest-selling smartphone brand -- 36.8 % of phones sold in the US in May were Samsung, compared to 32.5 % that were iPhones.

As for this apparent dip in Apple loyalty levels, Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech suggests that consumers were attracted by its display. "The Samsung Galaxy S5 has had some success in attracting former iPhone owners across Europe. In general, consumers buying the Galaxy S5 were primarily attracted by its large screen size. This is something Apple is likely to address with the rumored larger screen iPhone 6 launch expected in late September."


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