Canalys on Chinese Smart Phones

Recently Canalys reported phenomenal growth of Android/Linux smart phones in China.

“Android has become a major growth driver in China, running on 81% of the smart phones shipped in China in Q2 2012.”

That’s 10% more than the share globally. Further, globally Apple is in second place with only 19% compared to 68% Android/Linux share of units shipped in Q2.

Of course, China is a huge market with the most potential in the near term to soak up many millions more units in the coming year or two. Eventually everyone in China who wants one will have one but by then the rest of the world will be in high gear and it won’t be to buy more expensive kit.

I think this phenomenon is not lost on OEMs of all kinds. FLOSS has a natural advantage in the market, price, all else being equal. The myth that Chinese-made products for Apple are wonderful while Chinese-made products with Android/Linux are second class is not sustainable. I think more gadgets will be produced with */Linux and some of them will be desktop/notebook PCs. Expect that later this year when M$ attempts to flog “8” on the world. */Linux will be price-competitive and since M$ is announcing the viability of ARM, that will be a major vector for GNU/Linux onto retail shelves. Of course, */Linux has a price-advantage for notebooks/desktops/tablets and thin clients too.

Apple’s tablets are clinging to their popularity but many cheaper units are selling. Apple has a good grip but not a monopoly there. I think */Linux will have traction when more tablets sell. At the moment the market for tablets is still very young. The world does not need $600 tablets as much as it needs $100 tablets. Apple cannot produce those but the world can with FLOSS.

see Stellar growth sees China take 27% of global smart phone shipments, powered by domestic vendors | Canalys.

SJVN has just posted on the tablet wars:
“As we head toward the 2012 holiday season, I expect iPad to finally have serious competition from Android tablets. I suppose it’s possible that Microsoft, with its Surface and Windows 8 tablets running on x86 processors and Windows RT tablets running on ARM processors, could be a contender as well, but I don’t foresee that. Android and its various hardware vendors have just spent the past two years showing how hard it is to compete with Apple in the tablet market; Windows is too late to the game to compete in this round. It might catch up later, but right now the story is Android.”

see Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols: Are Android tablets ready to take on the iPad?

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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30 Responses to Canalys on Chinese Smart Phones

  1. Clarence Moon says:

    False. Patents exist to promote technology and to make it easy to copy/use the developments of others. In the old days…

    Rather naive, Mr. Pogson, rather naive. Perhaps “in the old days” that was true, but I am sure that you are not so old to have seen any such days.

  2. oldman rudely wrote, “As far as I can see Robert Pogson thinks that he has the right to “breathe free software” He thinks that software creators have no right to protect what they have created if they choose to do so. He insists that he has a right to just use what is not his, and benefit from others work without compensating them That makes him a parasite in my eyes.”

    Creators of FLOSS do protect their software by using GPL and other FLOSS licences. These licences prevent Big Brother from claiming the software and keeping it hidden. If Big Brother distributes the software with modifications they are required to distribute the source code. That keeps the software free as the creator intended. Those who create non-free software are entitled to use it as they see fit but not to force me or anyone shopping retail to use it. There are millions of Free Software developers whose rights are protected by the FLOSS licences. That is their choice and I do have a right to use that software if I obtain a copy containing the grant of licence. In principle, one could create FLOSS and never distribute it but that would be useless. FLOSS is meant to be distributed. You should know that by now, oldman.

    The principle has been repeated here endlessly. Why not one more time… Creators of FLOSS are entitled to use FLOSS libraries and other FLOSS source code in order to make it easier to write their software. In return they must release their modifications if they distribute modified software. That is their responsibility and it gives me the right to use such software. Linus said it best, “It sounds unfair: get nine hours of work for doing one hour. But it obviously is not.” The nine hours he spoke about is the Free Software a creator of Free Software gets to use in his work. The one hour is his work which he is paid by one of many means including the fun of it and learning the trade. It’s exactly the same as an apprentice working with a master for five years at a low rate to learn a trade. It’s not stealing from the apprentice. He get’s a bargain. The world benefits from the presence of skilled tradesmen without having to pay a cent to train them. Everyone benefits from FLOSS.

  3. JR says:

    @ Oldman

    My apologies perhaps I should read Robert Pogson’s posts more carefully.

    I just thought he was an advocate for FOSS not a person who saw it as his right to that software.

  4. oldman says:

    “Are we all parasites because we use it everyday.?”

    Using what you have been given for free is not the issue, assuming that you have a right to what is not freely given just because it is software is the issue.

    As far as I can see Robert Pogson thinks that he has the right to “breathe free software” He thinks that software creators have no right to protect what they have created if they choose to do so. He insists that he has a right to just use what is not his, and benefit from others work without compensating them That makes him a parasite in my eyes.

    him a parasite in my

  5. oldman says:

    “Believe it or not there are people in this world who do contribute to the greater good.”

    I have no trouble believing it, but that fact is irrelevant to my point.

    “Just think, Tim Berners Lee did not see the point in patenting the world wide web.”

    That was his legally protected choice. Other have chosen to benefit from their creations by patenting and then licensing them.

    “In case you are interested here is a link:
    http://www.techspot.com/news/47386-tim-berners-lee-defends-the-open-web-from-patent-threat.html

    What does this have to do with the point that I was making? If the parent is stands, then this gentlemen will reap a windfall from his creation. What is wrong with that?

    Are we all parasites because we use it everyday.?

    “Correct me if I am wrong but you cannot tell me that the patent system especially the way it is applied in the USA is promoting innovation, let alone benefitting consumers.”

    It is the law of the land. Those US citizens who disagree with it are free to work to change it – many are trying to do so. But in the interim it is what it is.

    Remember nobody has an inherent right to some one else s property.

    “Remember it is you and I that pay for this in the long run.”

    That may in the end be the price of freedom.

  6. JR says:

    @ Oldman

    Believe it or not there are people in this world who do contribute to the greater good.
    Just think, Tim Berners Lee did not see the point in patenting the world wide web.

    In case you are interested here is a link:
    http://www.techspot.com/news/47386-tim-berners-lee-defends-the-open-web-from-patent-threat.html

    Are we all parasites because we use it everyday.?

    Correct me if I am wrong but you cannot tell me that the patent system especially the way it is applied in the USA is promoting innovation, let alone benefitting consumers.

    Remember it is you and I that pay for this in the long run.

  7. oldman says:

    “Neither the US nor any other country has much interest in making a few people rich.”

    Neither are they going to enslave their most creative people for the free benefit of parasites like you Pog.

    You have zero entitlements to someone else s work.

  8. Clarence Moon wrote, “Patents, trade secrets, and copyrights exist for the very purpose of precluding followers from gaining a foothold in one’s domain.”

    False. Patents exist to promote technology and to make it easy to copy/use the developments of others. In the old days this was very appropriate for machinery and such that took years to develop and could provide employment for a lifetime. Now that technology is produced and discarded like tissue-paper, it is questionable that the term of patents should be the same for stuff that can be produced in weeks and whose lifetime may be just a few years, but the reason for patents is to promote technology not to keep it hidden. That’s whey full disclosure is a requirement. That’s why closed source software should not be patentable, ever.

    US Constitution: “to promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;”

    Neither the US nor any other country has much interest in making a few people rich. It’s a government for the people, not for the few. The idea is to make the world a better place.

  9. oiaohm says:

    Clarence Moon
    “In-between, there is a lot of room for innovations such as Windows RT. If Microsoft and others can sell that sizzle, they will succeed.”

    Key word Others. MS is not alone releasing a device OS this year. Mozilla is releasing one so is the old Meego crew.

    Clarence Moon
    “The road to success in product marketing is paved with product differentiation that makes one’s product compare more favorably to some market segment based on the same set of criteria than a competitor’s product.”
    Ok so you mean a iMac wait that bombed in the end. Worked for a while.

    Idevices got into the market before Android did. So got it self some rolling speed. The problem is if it will be able to keep that going.

    Clarence Moon you can only market stuff so much before a person goes hey I can do this cheaper using competitor.

    Really I think Apple is about to kick self in nuts. They are changing the idevice docking port.

  10. Clarence Moon says:

    Which explains why…

    There is nothing about comparative product marketing that negates using whatever barriers to market entry exist that are useful to contain one’s competitors, Mr. Pogson. Do you seriously think that a company like Apple who is the recognized leader in the industry should make it easier for others to follow behind?

    Patents, trade secrets, and copyrights exist for the very purpose of precluding followers from gaining a foothold in one’s domain.

    pile of marketing crap

    Your attitude is showing, Mr. Pogson! It is blinding you to the light of understanding.

  11. ch says:

    “M$ is aiming for $199 we are told”

    Yes, so we are told – by one source. Of course MS could afford to sell Surface tablets at dumping prices till the cowes come home, but my gut feeling says that’s not what they will do. Let’s wait until official prices are announced.

    “For x86/amd64, it is the same story. If you sell the machine for $100 more so you make money and pay M$ the competition using FLOSS will stunt your growth and may soon cut your share.”

    and

    “The OEMs can do that by ignoring M$ and there’s little M$ could do about it.”

    Where do you see that happening? In the PC market, if you want to sell your machines in significant numbers, you put Windows on them – or you don’t sell, except in countries where the Windows DVD can be had for $1.

    “The world knows */Linux is an easy and effective OS.”

    No. What the Joe averages of the world “know” – at best – is that Linux is “that geeky, other OS that nobody I know uses.” Some might even know that “it’s supposed to be good on those badass servers I’m not running.”

  12. Clarence Moon wrote, “The road to success in product marketing is paved with product differentiation that makes one’s product compare more favorably to some market segment based on the same set of criteria than a competitor’s product.”

    Which explains why Apple and M$ are desperately suing the world to exclude competing products? Which explains why Apple and M$ are desperately trying to make exclusive deals for their products? There is a reason Apple and M$ cannot stand competition. They are not special and many people know it, threatening their pile of marketing crap.

  13. Clarence Moon says:

    They can’t because many more customers prefer small cheaper computers than larger more expensive ones

    Which neatly explains the surge in growth for Apple devices over the past few years? The road to success in product marketing is paved with product differentiation that makes one’s product compare more favorably to some market segment based on the same set of criteria than a competitor’s product. Sex appeal or degree of cool is a part of that criteria. Android could appeal to the cheapskate, techno-dweeb segment more effectively than Apple, but that is a rather small segment.

    In-between, there is a lot of room for innovations such as Windows RT. If Microsoft and others can sell that sizzle, they will succeed.

  14. ch wrote, “Because they can sell the machine for $100 more since buyers prefer it?”

    Nope. They can’t because many more customers prefer small cheaper computers than larger more expensive ones. That’s why M$ is aiming for $199 we are told, to stay in the game. OEMs are squeezed if they have to pay for the OS while M$ gets it for peanuts. OEMs are tired of subsidizing M$. For x86/amd64, it is the same story. If you sell the machine for $100 more so you make money and pay M$ the competition using FLOSS will stunt your growth and may soon cut your share. How much growth have OEMs foregone by allowing Samsung and others to sell far more small cheap computers running */Linux than that other OS? 100% for a couple of years now…

    M$ is distorting the markets and it’s time they were cut down to size. The OEMs can do that by ignoring M$ and there’s little M$ could do about it. The world knows */Linux is an easy and effective OS. OEMs and retailers are making money selling it on small cheap computers. There’s no reason to depend on M$ for margin these days.

  15. JR says:

    @ Clarence Moon

    Your comment refers ……….. “Witness the sort of profitless race to the bottom that is being visited on Android suppliers. They make a lot of devices, but they don’t make much of a profit. With Surface leading the way, they have the opportunity to switch to RT and get off the Android death spiral.”

    Please explain to me how your statement correlates with this: from this site:
    http://www.businessweek.com/ap/2012-08-15/a-look-at-recent-tech-industry-earnings

    — July 6: Samsung Electronics Co. estimates its second-quarter operating profit at 6.5 trillion won to 6.9 trillion won ($5.7 billion to $6.1 billion), a 79 percent jump from a year earlier based on the midpoint of that range. Analysts say the sharp rise in operating profit was driven by the success of its Galaxy line of smartphones. However, Samsung’s stock fell as lower-than-expected overall sales underlined the threat from Europe’s economic malaise.

    And also if you have time please explain this to me with the product not yet on the market:

    “With Surface leading the way, they have the opportunity to switch to RT and get off the Android death spiral.”

    Surely it would be prudent to wait and see what the product does in the market before making a statement like this.

  16. ch says:

    “Explain how there’s more profit for OEMs in that.”

    Because they can sell the machine for $100 more since buyers prefer it?

  17. Clarence Moon, demonstrating innumeracy, wrote, “With Surface leading the way, they have the opportunity to switch to RT and get off the Android death spiral.”

    Let’s see. OEMs pay M$ $80 per unit for nothing while those using Android on similar hardware get to keep the $80. Explain how there’s more profit for OEMs in that.

  18. Clarence Moon says:

    It does not matter what share M$ gets. Any hurts the OEMs slaving away for M$.

    That is where your lack of understanding of product marketing leads you astray, Mr. Pogson. As a reference implementation of an RT device at the extreme high end, The Surface product would help OEMs who could obtain a lot of acceptability of their own RT tablet and allow them headroom under a generous price umbrella to make profits that could not be made under normal circumstances.

    Witness the sort of profitless race to the bottom that is being visited on Android suppliers. They make a lot of devices, but they don’t make much of a profit. With Surface leading the way, they have the opportunity to switch to RT and get off the Android death spiral.

  19. Chris Weig wrote, “Acer’s CEO was shaking in his little boots”.

    The OEMs no longer fear M$. All they have to do is work together to replace M$ with FLOSS as the basis of their software and the good times will role for the OEMs. All the $billions siphoned off by M$ will be theirs for a very small investment.

    M$:“our Surface devices will compete with products made by our OEM partners, which may affect their commitment to our platform.”

    “May” is not the right term. “Will” is what I would have written. You don’t inspire more obedience by kicking the victim. You inspire resentment. M$ is very vulnerable. Their “cloud” stuff is not that profitable. Their client stuff is losing share. Their hardware initiative will be the trigger for a definite downturn in their business. If they have to work for a living, margins will decline sharply and others will have a lot more fun in the market.

  20. Clarence Moon wrote about “a $199 Surface”.

    It does not matter what share M$ gets. Any hurts the OEMs slaving away for M$. People are not going to buy a PC-replacement and a PC. Anything with a big keyboard is a PC-replacement for some people. Margins for OEMs are extremely tiny, sometimes a few percent. Losing a few percent of the market for PCs will hurt them. The resentment of OEMs for working for M$ for decades while M$ raked in huge margins is boiling to the surface.

    The OEMs who do promote Surface are hedging their bets but if the uptake is as small as some predict, they will lose on that as well. The period from Vista to “8” has been an awakening for OEMs. I think they would do well to establish */Linux and FLOSS as the their universal software leaving M$ to sulk in some corner.

  21. Clarence Moon says:

    Doubtless a $199 Surface would give Microsoft the kind of numerical dominance that it has with Win7 in the OS market, but that seems incredibly far fetched. There is no basis for the claim as near as I can tell beyond the anonymous claim. Were it true, I think that I would try to be first in line.

  22. Chris Weig says:

    Surface is supposed to retail for $199.

    http://www.engadget.com/2012/08/14/microsoft-surface-199/

    Kind of a ballsy move, but Microsoft can pull it off. As they did with the Xbox. That’s probably why Acer’s CEO was shaking in his little boots.

  23. kozmcrae wrote, “My favourite parts are the paid-for rave reviews and fake, wildly optimistic installation numbers.”

    I suppose I have made my small contribution, one download of the preview.

    I wonder if my result reflects the tightening of hardware on which that other OS will run. I read today only 5 OEMs will be shipping the ARMed version. “8” could be the iPhone of the world of smart thingies, popular at first but then swamped by dozens of OEMs shipping stuff people want instead of what M$/Apple allow. It’s puzzling about iPad though. Why does Apple retain share of tablets but lose share of smart phones? I have used a Samsung tablet and it’s cool. Does hype only stick to tablets?

  24. kozmcrae says:

    Robert Pogson wrote:

    “Expect that later this year when M$ attempts to flog “8″ on the world.”

    I just realized that I’m waiting for the release of Windows 8 like a little kid waiting for Christmas. Well, more like the release of the latest apocalyptic disaster movie from Hollywood.

    My favourite parts are the paid-for rave reviews and fake, wildly optimistic installation numbers. Microsoft is going to out Microsoft itself with the release of Windows 8.

  25. oldman says:

    Think about it Samsung could release a tablet claiming same screen as ipad faster processor than ipad and Apple not even be able to dispute it because it would be. ”

    But it wouldn’t run iOS or attach to and use iTunes Store. So how is that a threat? As much as you may believe otherwise Android is not iOS and never will be.

  26. oiaohm says:

    Phenom same grade as a samsung android tablet clone is 199 in Australia in fact better.

    Main reason why apple is trying to block samsung in court cloning their devices is samsung can.

    A4 and A5 chips Apple uses are made by samsung. The screen the latest generation ipad uses is what Samsung makes for apple.

    So if Samsung really does get into the tablet market serous-ally there is no reason why they cannot release ipad clones if nothing legally stops them.

    Think about it Samsung could release a tablet claiming same screen as ipad faster processor than ipad and Apple not even be able to dispute it because it would be. Fighting who is your maker is not healthy.

    Samsung is a true nightmare to apple.

  27. Clarence Moon says:

    Who do you despise the most, Mr. Pogson, Apple or Microsoft? Or are they about equal?

    SJVN is as inexperienced as yourself in product positioning in retail markets, it seems. Android suppliers are in the “low price producer” strata vs Apple’s products being positioned in the upper realm of “shopping goods” or even “luxury goods”. 10″ competitors to iPad just cannot muster the user interest to compete on price alone and they have no panache’ to compete on “cool’.

    Surface, on the other hand, seems to be aiming squarely at the top end of Apple’s spectrum. Together with some serious ad money being used to wake up the consumer, it could be a very successful move, particularly in making Windows RT products from the low price producers being seen as more acceptable competitors to Apple as low cost Surface device alternatives rather than as just cheapo tablets.

  28. Phenom says:

    You are not paying attention, Mr. Pogson. I clearly stated that Samsung do have high-end devices. These high-end devices are in the same price league with i-Devices and they are exactly the ones Apple seeks to banish from the market.

    Again, please stay focused. Low-end cheap Android devices, which you are so happy about, are targetted to the people who would simply not spend the money on neither i-Device, nor any expensive Samsung offering. Therefore, this cheap market segment is fully neglected by Apple, and by Microsoft as well. And it has always been.

    This market is of no interest to Google either. While it may get them searches, it gets them close to no clicks. In fact, the whole mobile section is bringing too few clicks in general, as recent reports revealed.

  29. Phenom presumes too much when he wrote, “No wonder cheap crappy Android devices will flourish there.”

    Wealthy people often became wealthy by being frugal. Android/Linux devices are clearly not crappy when Apple has to sue to try to keep them off the market. If they were crap the market would deal with them without any effort by Apple.

  30. Phenom says:

    Pogson, remember you speak of a country so poor that people there sell their organs to buy an i-Device.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/9191325/Chinese-boy-sells-kidney-to-buy-iPad.html

    No wonder cheap crappy Android devices will flourish there. Rich people would still go for iPhones and iPads. Ah, and btw, Windows Phone seems to be doing nicely in China, too, thanks to devices like ZTE Tania:
    http://www.redorbit.com/news/technology/1112538396/windows-phone-beats-iphone-in-china/

    Nothing new, Pogson. This is the same story we’ve been telling here all the time. Android is the consolation for the people with modest financial abilities. This particular market (these people) are of too little interest to both Apple and MS. Samsung and HTC are the only exception having their high-end devices, but they former are very likely to get their ass kicked in court.

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