Apple accounts for 51% of devices as Christmas gifts

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Date: Wednesday, December 31st, 2014, 10:51
Category: iOS, iPad, iPhone, iPod, News, retail

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These are the days of giving devices as gifts.

Specifically, Apple devices.

Per Flurry, 2014 turned into a banner year for Apple, its devices accounting for 51 percent of the new device activations worldwide Flurry recognized in the week leading up to and including Christmas Day (December 19th – 25th). Samsung held the #2 position with 18% of new device activations, and Microsoft (Nokia) rounded out the top three with 5.8% share for mostly Lumia devices. After the top three manufacturers, the device market becomes increasingly fragmented with only Sony and LG commanding more than one percent share of new activations on Christmas Day. Up-and-comers Xiaomi, Huawei, and HTC all had less than one percent share on Christmas Day. One reason is surely their popularity in Asian markets where December 25th is not the biggest gift-giving day of the year.


To put this in perspective, for every Samsung devices that was activated, Apple activated 2.9 devices. For every Microsoft Lumia device activated, Apple activated 8.8 devices. While, the holidays in general and Christmas in particular are not the sole indicator of the smartphone market share and trends, it is safe to say that Apple’s newly released iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have had a blockbuster holiday season, despite a lackluster holiday season for the consumer electronics industry.

The app industry continued with its tradition of witnessing the largest numbers of app installs on Christmas Day. With a new device, we’re all likely to turn into install addicts. This year, and on Christmas Day in the US, Flurry tracked 2.5x the number of app installs as compared to an average day in the first three weeks of December. This is a remarkable number considering the maturity of the US market and the difficulty of getting recognized in crowded app stores. Perhaps unsurprisingly, games and messaging apps saw the highest increase in app installs on Christmas Day as we sought entertainment and connection with friends and family.

Increasingly the new device market is being driven less by smart device adoption and more by consumers finding the form factor that works for them. Christmas 2014 saw a big jump in the number of phablets activated. As reported in September (pre-iPhone 6 Plus), phablets were gaining share. This Christmas, it appears even more consumers are switching to the larger phone now that there is an iOS option. In the week leading up to Christmas, 13% of new device activations were phablets compared to just 4% in 2013. In fact, the iPhone 6 Plus was one of the top 5 devices Flurry saw activated for Christmas; the iPhone 6 was #1. The phablet’s popularity seems to come at the expense of full-sized tablets and to a lesser extent small tablets. App developers should take into account the fact that larger screens are becoming the primary device; it’s not just the secondary primetime tablet anymore. Even so, the medium-sized phone is still favored by most consumers and saw the largest share of device activations this Christmas.

If Christmas is a bellwether for the year ahead, users should expect strong performance from iOS devices and a continued shift to the once-derided phablet form factor. This was the year that time spent on mobile finally eclipsed TV, and the data shows that we are spending this time in more apps than ever. It was another record year for app developers, and there are no signs of the momentum stopping.

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3 Responses to “Apple accounts for 51% of devices as Christmas gifts”

  1. @JasonOGrady It was a Christmas gift to myself… #notashamedtoadmit

  2. Apple accounts for 51% of devices as Christmas gifts http://t.co/eIhzsoIYvK

  3. So not surprised about this: http://t.co/nAfMrDnsiM #gifts #ChristmasGifts #Christmas