How iPhone 5, Facebook, iTunes rule in UAE

iPhone 5 has now replaced Samsung S3 as the most commonly used smartphone in the UAE, with rivals Samsung and Apple both recording an increase to their market shares, the UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) said in its latest report yesterday.

The TRA has released a report on the nation’s most popular mobile phone handsets, social networking platforms and applications websites.
Investigating the current state of the market, the report reveals the market share of mobile phones in the UAE by manufacturer and model.

According to the report, during the period between July 1, 2013 and September 30, 2013, 46 per cent of handsets registered on the UAE’s networks were smartphones, a figure that has increased during each quarter in 2013.

This also goes on to show the maturity of the UAE market, where almost half the handsets are smartphones. That’s also why global manufacturers usually choose the UAE to be among the earliest markets in which to launch their new handsets. Across the region, smartphones now account for nearly two out of every five phones in the Middle East, according to the latest research from International Data Corporation (IDC).

In terms of smartphone models, Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone 5 was the most commonly used smartphone in the UAE in with 2.8 per cent of the total handsets registered on UAE networks.

The report illustrates that the Samsung S3 was the second most popular smartphone with 2.5 per cent of the market share, followed by iPhone 4S (2.3 per cent), iPhone 4 and BlackBerry 9900 (both 1.8 per cent); Samsung S4 (1.6 per cent); Galaxy S Duos (1.2 per cent); BlackBerry Bold 9790 (1.1 per cent) and BlackBerry Bold 9780 (1 per cent).

In addition, the TRA report also shows that a massive 56.2 per cent of all handsets registered on UAE networks were manufactured by Nokia, followed by Samsung (16.4 per cent), BlackBerry (10.2 per cent) and Apple (7.8 per cent); LG (1 per cent); Sony (0.9 per cent); HTC (0.6 per cent); and Huawei (0.5 per cent). Unlike Nokia and BlackBerry, though, Samsung and Apple recorded increases in their market shares in Q3.

In terms of specific handset models, the Nokia 101/1010 (4.1 per cent) was the most popular mobile handset in UAE in Q3 surpassing the Nokia 1280/1282 which was the most popular in the previous quarter.

In Q3, the Nokia 1280/1282 (3.7 per cent) was the second most popular handset followed by both the Nokia X1 and Nokia E5 (3 per cent); iPhone 5 (2.8 per cent); Samsung S 3 (2.5 per cent); iPhone 4S (2.3 per cent); the iPhone 4 and BlackBerry Bold 9900 (both 1.8 per cent); Samsung S4 (1.6 per cent); Galaxy S Duos (1.2 per cent); BlackBerry Bold 9790 (1.1 per cent) and BlackBerry Bold 9780 (1 per cent).

During the period from July 1, 2013 to September 30, 2013, users of smartphones and fixed Internet services in the UAE visited various applications websites a total of 1.5 billion times. Apple iTunes was by far the most commonly visited applications website, followed by Nokia OVI; Samsung Apps; Blackberry App World and Android Applications.

In terms of social media, UAE smartphone and fixed Internet users made a total of 13.7 billion visits to social networking websites during the period from July 1, 2013 to September 30, 2013. Visits to Facebook accounted for 91 per cent of total visits to social networking sites, followed by Twitter with 8 per cent of visits, Maktoob with 0.1 per cent, then LinkedIn and MySpace.

Commenting on the review, Mohamed Nasser Al Ghanim, Director General, TRA said: “The report provides results that will be of interest both to the public and, crucially, the manufacturers who supply the communications technology our nation has come to depend on. Providing very distinct analysis of consumer adoption, the research reflects the nation’s dynamic ecosystem in which both feature phones and smartphones are driving sustained telecommunications sector growth.”

“This report falls in line with the TRA’s continuous effort to inform the public regarding the current state of the telecommunications sector and monitor its development going forward. Creating open and clear channels of communication with the public through research is a core objective of the TRA as we recognise the significance of their involvement. Statistical research such as this provides invaluable market insight and it is for that reason we will continue to conduct similar projects long into the future,” he added.


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