Microsoft has announced that Windows Phone has shipped more than the iPhone in seven market of the world in the last quarter. Frank X. Shaw, Corporate Vice President of Corporate Communications at Microsoft said in a blog post on the Official Microsoft blog said:
"Windows Phone has reached 10 percent market share in a number of countries, and according to IDC's latest report, has shipped more than Blackberry in 26 markets and more than iPhone in seven."
It's interesting to note that Microsoft did not mention the names of the countries where Windows Phone was outselling the iPhone but Nick Wingfield of The New York Times
got in touch with the IDC, the research firm whose stats were quoted by Microsoft to name them. IDC analyst Kevin Restivo, got back with the list of names that included Argentina, India, Poland, Russia, South Africa and Ukraine in addition to a group of smaller nations that include Croatia and rest of central and eastern Europe.
It's worth pointing out that shipments and sales are two separate parameters and these numbers only reflect the official number of Windows Phone devices imported into the countries.
Also, IDC elaborates that three of the seven markets, Ukraine, South Africa and "rest of central and eastern Europe" were very small markets where Windows Phone device shipments were less than 100,000 each, in the fourth quarter, while countries such as Argentina have a thriving grey market which is not tracked by the firm.
In India, the reason for the increased shipments is most likely Nokia increasing its smartphone shipments expecting an increase in demand with the launch of budget handsets such as the Lumia 620. Nokia's also trying to market its Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 handsets via television and print campaigns. So it won't come as a surprise if shipments are higher than that of the iPhone given that the iPhone commands a much higher retail price.
Also, similar to other developing markets where import duties are high, a lot of iPhone sales in India are unofficial and come from the grey market, which IDC doesn't count. So the shipments are not accurate indicators for actual sales.
That said Apple's distributers have intensified their marketing campaigns with full page print ads and monthly instalment schemes since the iPhone is not offered on contract, in the Indian market.