Symbian Market Share

symbian.gifAccording to the UK Guardian newspaper, Symbian is aiming to supply 10 percent of the world-wide mobile phone market within the next three years.It aims to improve market share by about 1 percentage point per year due to growth of use of the Internet on mobile phones.

It’s interesting to note that Symbian says…

"We do not make volume forecasts"

I think ".. any more" should be added as early forecasts for the OS were not met.

Ultimately, Symbian’s fate is tied to that of it’s licensees. Hence, I suspect Symbian thinks growth is tied to the mobile Internet because its major customer (Nokia) is betting on the Internet.

Also remember that growth of Symbian doesn’t necessarily mean growth of a programmable OS. The MOAP platform is also experiencing growth and is closed to 3rd party development.

I believe 1% per year is actually disappointing and more could be achieved. Symbian could do better if a licencee were to concentrate on improving the user experience instead of or as well as the mobile Internet.

As an example, a builder friend of mine had trouble finding his call log on his new S60 phone. Some basic things just aren’t obvious. Incidentally, there are similar problems on Windows Mobile. I gave my wife the new HTC Touch phone to try. She handed it back after a few days because the commonly used phone features were just too difficult to find each time.

Smartphones must become more usable if they are ever to be taken up by the mass market.