Saudi university research claims that Apple is less popular than Samsung, based on Twitter followers. Of course Apple doesn't maintain a Twitter account for the company as a whole, the only Twitter feed from Apple is to publicise the App Store... 

The press release from King Saud University in Saudi Arabia is claiming that its research shows that Samsung is significantly outnumbering Apple in followers [on Twitter], and that "language plays an important role when choosing between the two smartphones."

KSU's Dr. Esam Alwagait said: "According to our research, while Apple is more popular in English-speaking countries, Samsung predominates elsewhere, particularly in Asia and Africa."

He adds that the research "seems to suggest that Samsung's smartphone may be viewed as being more user friendly for non-English speakers."

The researchers conducted their research by examining the official Twitter accounts of Samsung @SamsungMobile and Apple @AppStore to "collect, formulate and analyse data with multi-level and multi-purpose queries".

There were 2,629,616 (now 2,627,718) followers for Samsung and 1,380,497 for @AppStore (there are now 1,485,924).

It strikes us that it's a poor comparison because Apple doesn't have a Twitter feed for iPhone or even an official Twitter feed for Apple in general. It's not comparing like for like.

However, after conducting the research KSU says it was able to conclude that: 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.

However, the university also looked at Klout scores (a measure of a user's influence across his or her social network) and found that Apple followers are more influential and more popular than Samsung followers. However, they say: "The sheer volume of Samsung followers suggests this could be a growing factor."

Follow Karen Haslam on Twitter / Follow MacworldUK on Twitter

Related

Super Bowl sees Apple launch AppStore.com, get mocked by Samsung in Galaxy ad

Apple beat Samsung in Q4 as US phone market declined in 2012

Smartphone shipments reach 671m in Q4 2012: Juniper Research

Nearly 300 million devices now running iOS 6

UK sales people recommend Samsung over Apple iPhone 'due to better commission'