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Originally published January 5, 2013 at 8:00 PM | Page modified January 6, 2013 at 1:31 AM

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Coming to terms: Market share

Checking out current market share and market-share trends can be useful when researching a company or an industry.

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Q: What’s “market share”?

A: The useful online glossary at investorwords.comprovides a good definition: “The percentage of the total sales of a given type of product or service that are attributable to a given company.”

Consider smartphone operating systems, for example.

According to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, in the United States, Apple’s iOS recently held a 53 percent share of the market (up from 36 percent a year ago), vs. 42 percent for Android, 3 percent for Windows and less than 2 percent for BlackBerry OS.

Recent global data from IDC for “smart” connected devices (which include smartphones, PCs and tablets) has Samsung with 22 percent share, followed by Apple at 15 percent, Lenovo at 7 percent, HP at 5 percent and Sony at 4 percent.

When assessing a company’s market share, it’s important to look at growth rates, too, along with profitability and the sustainability of those growth rates.

Checking out current market share and market-share trends can be useful when researching a company or an industry.

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