2016 Internet Trends Report: Global Smartphone User Growth Slowing as Android Outpaces iOS

Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner Mary Meeker recently shared her annual Internet Trends report for 2016, showcasing a presentation of 213 slides covering a range of topics from global life expectancy to the ongoing market battle between iOS and Android.

Concerning the specific battle between iOS and Android, Meeker notes that over the past six years iOS has seen just a two percentage point increase in market share, while Android has exploded from a 4 percent presence in the industry in 2009 to a massive 81 percent in 2015. The pattern is expected to continue, with Meeker projecting iOS will see a year-over-year loss of 11 percent in unit shipments as Android climbs another 7 percent in 2016.

Meeker report 3
Due to Apple's introduction of the lower-cost iPhone SE -- and the cheaper price tag of smartphones in the company's expanding global markets -- Meeker also expects Apple's average selling price per unit to dip this year for the first time since 2012. In that year, ASP dropped only 4 percent (from $712 in 2011 to $686 in 2012), but now the company is predicted to see a 9 percent decline in ASP (dropping off from $717 in 2015 to $651 in 2016).

Unlike in years past, global smartphone unit shipments are slowing "dramatically," for both Apple and Android-supported devices. Expansion for the smartphone market as a whole has stagnated, going from a peak in 2010 at nearly 80 percent year-over-year growth, to just about 15 percent in 2015.

Meeker report 1
Global smartphone user growth is seeing a similar slow-down; understandably, the largest markets with the least amount of smartphone proliferation have the biggest upticks in year-over-year increments. These include Asia-Pacific, which has seen a nearly 20-percentage-point increase in smartphone user share over the last seven years and now accounts for over half of the total market.

Apple has been attempting to gain a larger foothold in these countries, notably seeing strong performance in China in recent years and looking toward India as its next area of focus. Low-cost devices -- and a larger number of potential customers without a smartphone -- in areas like the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America also presumably helped those territories come out on top in the total rankings for global smartphone user growth.

Meeker report 2
Earlier in April, Apple reported its first year-over-year decline in revenue since 2003. The news led to a string of reports addressing the company's declining stock value and various "peak iPhone" comments concerning its potential inability to continue to grow in certain markets, especially where its flagship smartphones see annual releases without much dramatic distinction between models.

Meeker's tamped-down expectations for 2016 mirror these concerns, particularly regarding the increasing belief that the 2016 iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus will be iterative updates on the current iPhone 6s line, using a largely similar design but with new features like a dual-lens camera and Lightning-enabled headphone connector. An uptick is now projected for 2017's "iPhone 8," which is seeing rumors surrounding everything from a massively redesigned bezel-free display that features a dual-curve OLED screen to truly wireless charging.

Mary Meeker's 2016 Internet Trends presentation, and a download of the full PDF, is available on KPCB's website.

Top Rated Comments

spiderman0616 Avatar
68 months ago
Maybe if Apple wasn't so obsessed with released 16 GB iPhones for $700-$800 then that percentage could be higher.
What an original and informed comment. Very helpful.
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
garirry Avatar
68 months ago
Maybe if Apple wasn't so obsessed with released 16 GB iPhones for $700-$800 then that percentage could be higher.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
wlossw Avatar
68 months ago
As an Apple fan (and not a a shareholder) I could care less about how much money they make, as long as they have enough to stay in business and make good products. I hope that the slide in market share will push them to accept lower margins and bring out better products.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
i_know_things Avatar
68 months ago
I wish some of these 'analysts' would do a comparative report on profitability of iOS vs other software over same period of time... What is the use in being a market leader when your profits are wafer thin?
I keep reading about "profitability". It's good for Apple but what does profitability mean for you? Is Apple adding new features/hardware? The answer is no. Apple fanboys are the reason why these crappy iPhones are selling like hot cakes. There is no innovation. The first version of iPhone is a true innovation in terms of product appeal.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
garirry Avatar
68 months ago
What an original and informed comment. Very helpful.
What did you expect? "Wow, I feel so bad for Apple. They release 16 GB!!! phones and they still don't get that many sales? Urgh the Android fanboys!"
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chrismail627 Avatar
68 months ago
I must say this doesn't surprise me as

1) Android makes way more budget phones than Apple.
2) Android really has come a long way since 2009 in both software and hardware offerings.

Competition is good for any company, especially Apple.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

REC ASA CODE2016 20160601 205816 2745

Elon Musk Reportedly Demanded to Become Apple CEO as Part of Potential Tesla Acquisition [Update: Musk Denies]

Friday July 30, 2021 9:04 am PDT by
Tesla CEO Elon Musk reportedly once demanded that he be made Apple CEO in a brief discussion of a potential acquisition with Apple's current CEO, Tim Cook. The claim comes in a new book titled "Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk and the Bet of the Century," as reviewed by The Los Angeles Times. According to the book, during a 2016 phone call between Musk and Cook that touched on the possibility of ...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...
a15 chip

iPhone 13 and Redesigned MacBook Pro Chip Production Hit With Gas Contamination

Friday July 30, 2021 5:44 am PDT by
The most important TSMC factory that manufactures Apple's chips destined for next-generation iPhone and Mac models has been hit by a gas contamination, according to Nikkei Asia. The factory, known as "Fab 18," is TSMC's most advanced chipmaking facility. TSMC is Apple's sole chip supplier, making all of the processors used in every Apple device with a custom silicon chip. Industry...
Apple watch series 5 new case material made of titanium 091019

Titanium Apple Watch Series 6 Models Currently Widely Unavailable

Sunday August 1, 2021 6:21 am PDT by
Models of the Apple Watch Series 6 with titanium cases part of the "Apple Watch Edition" collection is currently widely unavailable for pick-up in several of Apple's retail stores in the United States and is unavailable entirely for delivery in major markets. Noted by Bloomberg's Mark Gurman in the latest edition of his "Power On" newsletter, titanium models of the Apple Watch Series 6,...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 13 to Bring Over a Major Feature From the Apple Watch

Wednesday July 28, 2021 2:21 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will feature an always-on display akin to the Apple Watch Series 5 and Series 6, according to recent reports. In his weekly Power On newsletter, Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman, who often reveals accurate insights into Apple's plans, said that the iPhone 13 may feature an Apple Watch-inspired always-on mode. The Apple Watch Series 5 and Apple Watch...
apple rtp land

Apple Preparing to Occupy 200,000 Square Feet of Temporary Space Ahead of New $1 Billion North Carolina Campus

Thursday July 29, 2021 9:14 am PDT by
Back in April, Apple announced a $430 billion investment over the next five years to create more than 20,000 new jobs as the company continues to expand. One significant piece of that plan is a new engineering and research center in North Carolina where Apple will be investing over $1 billion and hiring at least 3,000 employees. Assemblage of seven properties in Research Triangle Park owned by ...
telegram

Bumper Telegram Update Enables Video Calls With Up to 1,000 Viewers

Saturday July 31, 2021 12:13 am PDT by
Telegram Messenger has received a major update to its video capabilities, including support for video calls with up to 1,000 viewers. Group video calls in Telegram allow up to 30 users to stream video from both their camera and their screen, and now a maximum of 1,000 people can tune into the broadcast. Telegram says it intends to continue increasing this limit "until all humans on Earth...
app store blue banner

Elon Musk: Apple's App Store Fees Are a 'De Facto Global Tax on the Internet'

Friday July 30, 2021 10:04 am PDT by
Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter today to criticize Apple's App Store fees in a tweet that sides with Epic in the ongoing Epic v. Apple dispute. "Epic is right," wrote Musk, before going on to call Apple's App Store fees a "de facto global tax on the Internet." Musk earlier this week made veiled comments about App Store fees, but today's statement is a much more direct criticism....
FaceID iMac REREREREMIX

Top Stories: Face ID on Future Macs, Elon Musk Criticizes Apple, and More

Saturday July 31, 2021 6:00 am PDT by
This week saw an interesting range of Apple news and rumors, including a blockbuster earnings report, rumors about next year's "iPhone 14" and Face ID coming to Macs, and more. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Other popular topics included Apple's crackdown on leaks, changes in the latest round of betas for iOS 15, iPadOS 15, and macOS Monterey, and several stories...
duracell battery bitter coating

Apple Says Don't Buy AirTag Replacement Batteries With Bitter Coating

Wednesday July 28, 2021 11:08 am PDT by
Since AirTags were just released earlier this year and are expected to have a year-long battery life, it may be some time yet before AirTag users need a replacement battery, but when the time comes for a refresh, Apple is warning customers not to buy batteries with a bitter coating. AirTags use coin-shaped CR2032 batteries, which happen to be a size that's easy to swallow. Some battery...