Microsoft Windows Phone devices are responsible for mobile web traffic than BlackBerry smartphones in North America, according to a new report from Chitika.
As a proxy for mobile engagement and usage, the stat is more unfortunate news for an already-ailing BlackBerry, and not as good for Microsoft as it might seem at first glance. Windows Phone web traffic was basically flat from February to April.
Some of that may have to do with the current lull in new Windows Phone devices. While Nokia is expected to start launching its new phone lineup this month, the past few months have been fairly quiet for people interested in buying new Windows Phones. Microsoft’s platform could see a boost later this year as Windows Phone 8.1 rolls out to consumers.
The operating system update will bring a number of interesting new features, including Cortana, Microsoft’s new virtual assistant that competes with Google Now and Siri. In addition, users will be able to purchase universal apps that will run on both their phone and any Windows 8.1 devices they might have, like tablets or PCs.
Meanwhile, iOS continues to generate the majority of total web traffic in North America, even though Android has a larger share of the total smartphone market. But like the current state of smartphone market share, the two operating systems essentially hold a duopoly, with Windows Phone coming in a very distant third.
Microsoft’s continued improvements to its operating system have kept users around, but the company needs to step up its game if it really wants to compete with iOS and Android going forward. The Redmond-based company recently closed its acquisition of Nokia’s Devices and Services business, which may help in those endeavors.