Windows Phone is starting to gain some ground, but don't expect it to be an Android threat anytime soon.
New data released today by research firm Strategy Analytics indicates that Windows Phone will secure 4 percent of the U.S. smartphone market this year, up from the 3 percent it nabbed in 2011. The research firm says Microsoft's operating system will be running on 5 million smartphones sold in 2012, compared with 3.5 million last year.
"Nokia, HTC and Samsung have some of the biggest Microsoft smartphone portfolios at present and they will be three main hardware vendors driving growth this year," Strategy Analytics senior analyst Scott Bicheno said today in a statement.
All told, 123 million smartphones will be sold this year, up 21 percent from the 101.8 million sold last year, Bicheno said.
Interestingly, Microsoft might actually do better worldwide rather than in the U.S. Back in June, another research firm, IDC, said that it expects Microsoft to own 5.2 percent of the worldwide smartphone market this year. Better yet for the software company, by 2016 that figure could grow to 19.2 percent, according to IDC.
Still, Microsoft, which recently announced Windows Phone 8, the successor to its current mobile operating system, will have a long way to go to catch Android. By 2016, Android operating system is expected to own 53 percent of the worldwide smartphone market, according to IDC.