A new study from the IDC research firm predicts that Microsoft’s Windows Phone will surpass the iPhone and Blackberry in worldwide market share by 2015 — making it second only to Google’s Android — thanks to the Redmond company’s new partnership with Nokia.

IDC says the Nokia deal will have “significant implications” for the smartphone market.

“Up until the launch of Windows Phone 7 last year, Microsoft has steadily lost market share while other operating systems have brought forth new and appealing experiences,” says IDC analyst Ramon Llamas in the news release. “The new alliance brings together Nokia’s hardware capabilities and Windows Phone’s differentiated platform. We expect the first devices to launch in 2012. By 2015, IDC expects Windows Phone to be number 2 operating system worldwide behind Android.”

Here’s how IDC sees the market shaping up in 2015.

Also of note: Look what happens to Symbian, the longtime Nokia platform, under the IDC model.

As noted by Kip Kniskern of LiveSide.net, it’s a rare bit of good news for Microsoft’s mobile initiative at a time when the company is getting raked over the coals over its slow and glitchy Windows Phone update process.

Comments

  • prsTM

    Meh. Is IDC taking into account the number of current Symbian users whose lock-ins expire before a suitable Windows Phone is available? They’re going to jump to iPhone or Android, and they’re never coming back.

  • prsTM

    Meh. Is IDC taking into account the number of current Symbian users whose lock-ins expire before a suitable Windows Phone is available? They’re going to jump to iPhone or Android, and they’re never coming back.

  • masimons

    Upgrade cycle too short for smartphones, and phone companies won’t keep up with software updates. Current issue with Android.

  • http://www.slideaway.ca/ jamEs harris

    This is so laughable. Nokia only exists anymore because they own the low end, budget phone market. WP7 isn’t an OS meant for budget handsets. The fact MS was so late to market that they let almost all of their market share evaporate, then can’t deliver a Nokia device until 2012 is pretty damning. People aren’t going to wait for MS to get their act together either.

    Microsoft and Nokia pairing up is like 2 people huddling together to keep warm before they die of hypothermia.

  • http://www.facebook.com/rwoan Ronald S Woan

    Can’t seem to find the actual report, but the only way I see this happening is smartphones replace the feature phone market and become a commodity with Windows Phone somehow becoming a low cost option. Under this scenario, you can easily see Apple creating a new premium market and dropping in overall smartphone market share.

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  • Boender

    I love predictions. They are so useful.

  • Joe the Coder

    I’m really trying to understand why they think that. The only way (as others have said) it can happen is if the Nokia installed base of “feature” (aka dumb) phone can be migrated to WP7 phones. This is totally dependent on MS/Nokia getting a LOT of carrier deals which will be at a very low price point. I supposed it’s possible but I’m not going to go long on Nokia stock.

  • Ali

    It does look like IDC is assuming that majority Symbian users will stay loyal to Nokia (or Microkia). I believe that, especially outside of the US market, where Nokia’s brand loyalty is super-strong, they’ll continue selling mid-range smartphones. Honestly, most people in the world weren’t buying Nokia’s mid- and high-end smartphones because they loved Symbian. They bought the device, and lets face it, Nokia makes slick devices. They will only get better with the WP OS. In fact, the 20% share seems conservative, since Nokia won’t end up as the only Windows Phone OEM. Samsung, HTC, and others will contribute to Microsoft’s market share.

    What’s more surprising to me is the projection for RIM growing unit sales at 17% per year.

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