Kantar is out with its smartphone market share numbers for three months ending in February and Android devices continue pulling away from iPhone in the United States. A year ago, iOS led Android by 47%-45% in the smartphone operating system market share competition. By February 2013, Android had moved to a 51%-43% lead. This report is a fairly strong argument for why Apple (AAPL) must get a budget smartphone out as soon as it can. The Apple brand is far stronger in its home market than it is in Asia, Latin America or even continental Europe. Yet even in its stronghold, Apple’s smartphone market share is now slipping fast as new buyers gravitate towards cheaper options or are captured by Samsung’s (005930) Galaxy glamor.
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