In every industry, there are companies that make their living by predicting the future. We call them analysts. The technology and entertainment industries are no different, and lucky for analysts, journalists write about their wild predictions, but rarely look back and see if they come true. Pyramid Research will be happy to hear that, as the company recently made a bold prediction that Windows Phone will show a meteoric rise in popularity, much like Android did last year, and go from fourth most popular smartphone OS to the number one spot. More interesting, the company has clarified its position, stating that Microsoft may hit number one by 2013.
In the accompanying blog post, Stela Bokun, a senior analyst at Pyramid, explains the reasoning, reiterating that the deal with Nokia will prove to be a huge catalyst for Windows Phone sales around the world.
“While we acknowledge the momentum that Android is experiencing and will continue to experience in 2011 and 2012, we believe that Nokia and Microsoft are a very powerful tandem, and that will show in its full force by the end of 2013,” said Bokun. “Some of the main obstacles to the growth of WP to date will be removed, as Nokia helps with bringing down the price of WP smartphones. Lower price of the devices will be the crucial prerequisite for the expansion of WP models. Nokia knows it and Microsoft knows it, and I am sure they will act on it quickly. It’s also worth mentioning that, apart from Nokia, quite a few other large handsets vendors in the world, such as Samsung, LG and Sony Ericsson are still placing their bets on WP. With the change in the price of WP devices, and the multivendor strategic approach of Microsoft, the main advantage of Android – scale – may be removed.”
Bokun also points out that Pyramid accounts for smartphone demand in 51 markets, which is more than many other analysts. After 2015, the company believes that Android and Windows Phone will continue to battle for supremacy while iOS and BlackBerry take a backseat due to their reliance on proprietary software that only runs on their own hardware.
The problem with the theory is that Pyramid shows Windows Phone beginning its skyrocket-like ascent right about now. The first Nokia Windows Phones aren’t due until at least September, and perhaps much later. And while we think Windows Phone has a bright future ahead of it, is it fair to expect it to climb as fast as Android did in a market where Android is present and still growing? IDC had a more cautious estimate, but only time will tell.