Windows phone worldwide market share drops below 1%

The market share of Windows phones has sunk below 1%, according to the latest smartphone sales report from technology analyst firm Gartner.

The number of phones made by Microsoft sold in the first quarter of 2016 came to 2.4 million, giving it a percentage of 0.7. In the corresponding quarter in 2015, Microsoft had sales of 8.27 million units giving it a 2.5% share.

Overall, smartphone sales worldwide grew by 3.9% to 349 million units compared to the corresponding quarter in 2015, according to Gartner. Predictably, Android sales were the highest (84.1%).

Apple saw its share fall with 51.6 million units sold compared to 60 million in the corresponding quarter in 2015.

In terms of brands, Samsung extended its lead over Apple taking 23.2% market share compared to Apple’s 14.8%. In the first quarter of 2015, those figures were 24.1% and 17.9% respectively, in a quarter when 336 million smartphones were sold.

Apple also saw its first double=digit drop year-on-year, with iPhone sales down by 14%, according to Gartner.

Another notable feature was the fact that Chinese vendors in the top five gained 17% of the total sales.

Garther’s research director Anshul Gupta was quoted as saying: “In a slowing smartphone market where large vendors are experiencing growth saturation, emerging brands are disrupting existing brands’ long-standing business models to increase their share.

“With such changing smartphone market dynamics, Chinese brands are emerging as the new top global brands. Two Chinese brands ranked within the top five worldwide smartphone vendors in the first quarter of 2015, and represented 11% of the market. In the first quarter of 2016, there were three Chinese brands – Huawei, Oppo and Xiaomi – and they achieved 17% of the market.”

According to Gartner, Oppo had the best performance, moving into the fourth position with unit sales growth of 145%. Like Huawei and Xiaomi, Oppo grew strongly in China, taking share from Lenovo, Samsung and Yulong.

Huawei saw strong smartphone demand in Europe, the Americas and Africa, while Xiaomi and Oppo saw their smartphone sales in the Asia-Pacific region rise by 20% and 199%, respectively.


By: Sam Varghese
Posted on:

Microsoft using ‘nasty trick’ to force Windows 10 upgrade

Once again, Microsoft has been caught out putting the security of its users at risk, by employing what has been described as a “nasty trick” to force an upgrade to Windows 10.

A BBC report said that the company had now changed the functionality of the pop-up that was used to encourage users to upgrade to Windows 10.

The red X at the right-hand top corner is normally used to close the pop-up, but the BBC said now clicking there activated the upgrade, rather than closing the pop-up.

One can only avoid the upgrade when another pop-up appears at the time scheduled on the first pop-up. The instructions provided by Microsoft are not exactly simple and will take up a fair amount of time.

Note that the instructions blithely say: “When you close this pop up, your PC will upgrade at the scheduled time,” as though closing a pop-up normally results in the activity specified therein running to conclusion!

The BBC said Brad Chacos, a senior editor at PC World, had described this latest Microsoft move as a “nasty trick.”

The only way to avoid an upgrade to Windows 10 appears to be by setting one’s PC which runs Windows 7, 8 or 8.1, to use manual updates, as iTWire has outlined.

And this means one has to be vigilant about checking manually for updates every now and then in order to avoid being caught out when a serious vulnerability is patched.

By: Sam Varghese
Posted on:

Set your Google Plus Custom Short URL

To get your custom URL:

  1. Sign in to Google My Business.
  2. Click Brand Pages at the top of the page, then click Manage this page for the page you’d like to manage.
  3. Click the three dash menu 3dash and choose Google+ page.
  4. Click the About tab, and under “Get your custom URL”, click Get URL. (If your page isn’t eligible, you won’t see the message.)
  5. You’ll see the custom URL you’ve been approved for, which you aren’t able to change. You may also need to add a few letters or numbers to make it unique to you.
  6. Check the box next to “I agree to the Terms of Service.” Then, in the bottom left corner, click Change URL.
  7. You may be asked to verify your account using your mobile phone number. To do this, you’ll need to:
    1. Enter your mobile phone number when prompted, and click Send code in the lower left corner.
    2. Check your phone for the code that was sent to you.
    3. Enter that code in the box on your screen, then click Verify in the lower left corner.
  8. When you’re ready to permanently add your URL to your profile, click Confirm choice.