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King saud University Deanship of e-Transactions & CommunicationsRiyadh, Saudi Arabia, January 31, 2013 – As the smartphone wars continue between Samsung and Apple, new research from King Saud University not only shows that Samsung is significantly outnumbering Apple in followers, but that language plays an important role when choosing between the two smartphones.

Smartphones have emerged as a primary means of social networking, while greatly enhancing connectivity.

Among smartphone products on the market, Samsung’s Galaxy series and Apple’s iPhone have gained wide popularity and surpassed other products.

While there have been media reports that Samsung's Galaxy smartphone is outselling Apple's iPhone, new research by Dr. Esam Alwagait, Dean of King Saud University’s Deanship of e-Transactions and Communications, and Basit Shahzad, a Deanship researcher, provides key insights into the reason for Samsung's growth.

“According to our research, while Apple is more popular in English-speaking countries, Samsung predominates elsewhere, particularly in Asia and Africa,” said Dr. Alwagait.

He said the research suggests Samsung's smartphone may be seen as more user friendly by non-English speakers.

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To compare the popularity of the Samsung and Apple smartphones, the KSU researchers examined the official Twitter accounts of Samsung and Apple – @SamsungMobile and @AppStore – to collect, formulate and analyze data with multi-level and multi-purpose queries.

The results were then classified by languages, cities, countries, and continents.

Data was drawn from Twitter accounts using the study-specific code, and the number of records received totalled 2,629,616 followers for SamsungMobile and 1,380,497 for AppStore.

The researchers said they focused their research on social networks as they have proliferated exponentially in recent years, and become an integral part of people’s everyday communication.

They said their a great source for information sharing.

Dr. Alwagait and Shahzad specifically selected Twitter (twitter.com) for their study as the network has more than 24 million unique visitors per month and 500 million tweets per day.

Some highlights of their findings include:

  • Samsung smartphones are universally more popular;
  • Android operating systems are more popular than Apple's iOS;
  • Apple followers are more likely to live in an English-speaking country than Samsung followers;
  • English is the primary language of choice for both sets of followers, though Samsung is more popular where English is not the primary language;
  • Considering the continental review, Samsung is significantly more popular in Asia, Africa, North and South America and Europe, while Apple is more popular in Australia;
  • While Samsung is overwhelmingly more popular in Asian and African countries, it has a relatively small lead over Apple in Europe
  • Based on Klout scores – a measure of a user's influence across his or her social network; Apple followers are more influential and more popular than Samsung followers. However, the sheer volume of Samsung followers suggests this could be a growing factor.

For more information about Dr. Alwagait and Mr Shahzad's study, contact basit@ksu.edu.sa or alwagait@ksu.edu.sa

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