Prediction: Windows Phone 7 to be Number 2 Mobile OS by 2015

Yes, that's right. According to a new IDC forecast for the smartphone market, Windows Phone 7, now the number 5 mobile OS and holding only a 5% marketshare, will shoot up to the number 2 spot just three years from now. The number one spot, according to the forecast, will be kept by Android. Forgive us if we're a bit skeptical.

In such a fast growing and rapidly changing market, three years is an eternity. So it is very tough to put much credence in a long term prediction for the smartphone market, which is predicted to grow by 49% this year alone. The prediction is based, in part, on the fact that iOS has plateaued recently. But it is due for a facelift, likely coming soon. And Nokia's WP7 devices aren't even due out until 2012, so it is hard to say what the reaction to them will be. And there is also RIM and HP's WebOS to reckon with.

According to the report: "Up until the launch of Windows Phone 7 last year, Microsoft has steadily lost market share while other operating systems have brought forth new and appealing experiences," said Ramon Llamas, senior research analyst with IDC's Mobile Devices Technology and Trends team, "The new alliance brings together Nokia's hardware capabilities and Windows Phone's differentiated platform. We expect the first devices to launch in 2012. By 2015, IDC expects Windows Phone to be number 2 operating system worldwide behind Android."

If the prediction is correct, it will probably be because enterprise widely decides to embrace WP7. And it will also depend on the type of handsets the OS is available on, and how the ongoing relationship with Nokia and Microsoft develops. We will be sure to keep you up to date on new developments, and if WP7 does rocket to the top, SlashGear will be here to report on it.

[via ZDNet]