It has been an article of faith for many mobile marketers that virtually all the profits are to be made from consumers using iPhones and iPads. Even though Apple’s devices had significantly less market share than Android, they owned the consumers that actually bought products and services via a mobile device. The leading indicator in this area has always been the share of industry profits that Apple itself was able to extract. For a while they were taking something in the order of 90% of mobile device manufacturer profits.
Latest figures show that Apple’s share of smartphone industry profits has dropped to just 53% while Samsung’s has increased to 37%. Given that 80% of smartphones now run on Android, Samsung clearly has a lot of leeway to grow that percentage. Apple’s job is harder because they already own the high-end – their route back to growth has to involve launching a cheap iPhone, and that’s not really where their core skill-set lies.
For performance marketers, the change can only mean good things.
Apple maintains strict controls on its mobile ecosystem which means that many campaigns simply never make it onto the iPhone. Android is much more freewheeling and fragmented, which for a buccaneering industry like ours can only be a good thing.
Disruption is our friend, because performance marketers are innovative, envelope-pushers. In the new age of SoLoMo, having Android as the new dominant force in mobile may be the best thing that could happen.