With the newly released iPhone 4S, Apple managed to reach a rare revival in British share that beat Android, Kantar reported on Monday. Having hit 42.8% of smartphone sales in the U.K., Apple’s October share knocked the rival platform down to 35%. The company showed similar results year-over-year. For August through October, iPhone share increased by 2.8 points, bringing Android down to 46% from the 49.9% it used to hold.
According to Kantar, most of the units were sold to existing owners, which suggests that the company’s base proved enough to drive much of the traffic. Around two thirds of customers who purchased an iPhone 4S had already owned an earlier version of the handset, while 14% of the total were upgrading from the fourth-gen model. To upgrade early, they were ready to pay a higher device price or an early termination fee.
It’s unclear which platforms the remaining 25% of those who bought a new handset were coming from, although many Apple users have historically arrived from RIM. Having dropped 1.3% year-over-year, BlackBerry ended the quarter with 19.6%.
The sustainability of the gains depends on both the appeal of lower priced iPhones and sustained interest past the holidays. Anyway, the data challenge the postulate that Android will always dominate the British market thanks to the plurality of manufacturers. The platform’s position is no longer certain with only Samsung, ZTE and Huawei known to thrive among major producers as HTC is lowering expectations.