According to at least one analyst, consumers are simply not interested in Windows Phone devices.
Bernstein Research’s Pierre Ferragu issued a note to investors this week that suggested they should continue to consider Nokia stock to be listed at an “Underperform rating” despite it enjoying a surge in the days following the Apple Vs. Samsung verdict.
Ferragu didn’t pull any punches in his comments over the general state of Windows Phone at this time.
Our research shows that for many years, poor sales of Windows-based phones stem from a deep and stable lack of consumer interest for the product. Despite numerous and repeated efforts of manufacturers (Nokia, but also Samsung and HTC) and Operators to develop an alternative to Android and Apple based on Windows, and despite the launch of numerous phones based on Windows with strong features, reviews and marketing support, the operating system remains cornered to less than 5% market share in smartphones. The lack of consumer interest for Windows-based phones has been very consistent in marketing surveys we have carried out across the globe over the last several years. The situation of Windows in mobile phones is now very unlikely to revert. Smartphone Operating Systems benefit from ecosystem dynamics in terms of application ecosystem but most importantly consumer advocacy and adoption. Given the strength of Android and Apple today in consumers’ minds and the scale of both ecosystems, it is unrealistic to believe anything short of a true product revolution, like the iPhone was in its time, could instill life into an alternative platform. All attentive industry observers should know that if operators and manufacturers are dying for an alternative ecosystem to emerge, all efforts to support Windows and other alternatives have fallen short because of these ecosystem dynamics.
In short: Ferragu really doesn’t see Windows Phone going anywhere no matter how hard Microsoft or the carriers may try to make is succeed.
This is in stark contrast to the report that was issued by IDC this past June that stated that the research firm projected Windows Phone as the second largest mobile operating system by 2016. Analysts are known to get things wrong, but apparently someone is very wrong in this particular case.