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During the last 12 days of Q3 2014, Apple "experienced a huge jump in sales share across almost all major markets thanks to the launch of the iPhone 6," reported Dominic Sunnebo of Kantar Worldpanel, enabling iOS to reach or exceed 40 percent market share in Australia, U.S., UK and Japan.
Twelve days of iPhone 6 sales dramatically shifted quarterly market share in Europe
Kantar's estimates of Apple's market share for the quarter increased by 40 percent (5.9 percentage points) over the year ago quarter across the five largest markets in Europe (Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Spain), while Android's share dropped by 2.6 percentage points, Windows Phone lost 1.3 points of share, and "others" lost 2 points.
Apple collectively achieved 20.7 percent smartphone market share in those markets, making the most gains in Great Britain, where iOS reached 39.5 percent of all sales, the highest level Kantar has ever assigned Apple in the U.K. and a 35.7 percent increase (10.4 percentage points) in share over the year ago quarter.
Kantar reported that Apple's retail stores in Great Britain sold 31 percent of new iPhone 6 models and claimed that 86 percent of launch month buyers in that country were upgrading from an older iPhone. The firm also said that 34 percent of iPhone 6 sales in the U.K. were to 16-24 year old buyers, and that 64 percent of early adopters were male.
In France, iOS market share jumped from 12.8 percent in August to 19.6 percent in October, with iPhone 6 gains coming directly out of the hide of Android. In Germany, Apple's smartphone share similarly jumped from 8.9 percent at the beginning of the quarter to 16.9 percent in October, again mostly at the expense of Android.
iPhone 6 drove iOS market share +33% higher in Australia, U.S. in Q3
iPhone 6 sales also helped push Apple's share up in Australia, where Kantar said iOS shifted from 29.3 percent to 40.4 percent share across the three months of the quarter as Android lost the most market share among rival platforms.
In the U.S. Kantar said Apple reached 41.5 percent share, a modest 0.7 percentage point increase over the year ago quarter but a major increase over August, when iOS was reported to have a 30.1 percent share of phone sales.
iPhones made up four out of the five best-selling models over the past three months
Compared to the year ago quarter, Windows Phone gave up 1.1 percentage points in the U.S. as Android gained an identical 1.1 points. Blackberry ended up with just 0.3 percent U.S. market share in the quarter.
Kantar said that in the U.S., "iPhones made up four out of the five best-selling models over the past three months."
iPhone 6 maintains Apple's share in China as Windows Phone disappears
In China, Kantar reported that Apple similarly increased its smartphone market share in the quarter to 15.7 percent, a 0.2 point increase over the year ago quarter and 1.5 percentage points higher than at the beginning of the quarter.
Sales of Windows Phone have virtually evaporated in China
Apple's gains come amid a rapidly growing market where most devices are shipped with a version of Android code (although most shipments in the country do not directly benefit Google). Sales of Windows Phone have virtually evaporated in China, plummeting from 3.5 percent one year ago to 0.5 percent in the September quarter.
Japan loves iPhone the most
In Japan, iOS was said to have lost share in the quarter compared to last year, but IOS retains 48 percent of all smartphone sales, effectively tied in share with all Android offerings combined.
Apple's share of the market in Japan is larger than in any other major market on Earth, a slap in the face at advocacy reporting by Wired and the Wall Street Journal that initially sought to portray the iPhone as fated to be "hated" in Japan.
Over the three months of the quarter, Kantar's figures for iPhone sales share in Japan grew from 27.1 percent in August to 48 percent in September. Market share of Blackberry and Windows Phone in Japan have both fallen below 0.6 percent.
Kantar has issued an interactive web graphic (above) that depicts its market share data in select markets over each month.