Android Edges Out iPhone as Most Desired in Latest Nielsen Report


A new Nielsen survey is reporting that 31 percent of those planning to purchase a new smartphone are considering Android as their first choice. Those considering the iPhone? Slightly lower at 30 percent. While several reports from various analytics groups have had Android as the top dog in market share, this marks the first time in Nielsen’s studies of the smartphone market that Android has been named the most desired smartphone platform in the US.

What’s more, Android once again leads in new smartphone subscriptions. Half of those who purchased a smartphone in the past six months went Android, while a quarter chose iOS as their platform. This translates to a 37 percent overall market share for Android, which leads a pack featuring Apple at 27 percent, BlackBerry at 22 percent, and the combined Windows Mobile/Windows Phone 7 userbase making up 10 percent.

[via Nielsen]

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  1. Cool. It would be interesting if they explored the reasons people want Android over iOS. I know why I prefer it. :)

  2. its easy, freeeeedom….and stupid iTunes!

    1. Funny enough, but many iPhone users berate Android for NOT having their own iTunes-like software.

      1. I wish Google would develop either an optional cloud based or desktop based software for people who want it to manage their phones. For example my absolutely non tech wife is clueless as to how to take pictures off or put music on her phone.

        Instead of telling her to “Plug in phone – change the settings to ” USB Storage” – Find “Android Phone” in “My Computer – Navigate to DCIM” she would love an user friendly interface to do all that.

        BTW I would prefer Something native, not crappy 3rd party double twist solution.

        1. Many of the Phone Makers have just such tools to simplify the media sync process. Check their web sites! Also if you have WiFi at home (or available) you can use something like the WebSharing App. and a web browser to avoid the USB cable complexities. ;)

        2. Then she can’t used a flash drive either which requires pretty much EXACTLY the same amount of knowledge. I know a lot of people who couldn’t use technology to save their life but they have no problem using a flash drive and getting pictures off their Android phone!

          1. Except..its completely different. adding even one layer of complexity can make a task much more difficult for those not inclined to technology. I’m sure she could learn but I’m sure I handicap her by doing it for her.

            The difference is

            Flash Drive

            Step 1 – plug in (it pops ups on your computer screen with folders YOU created)

            Getting picture off Android

            Step 1. Plug in with Usb cable
            Step 2. Change settings to “Usb storage”
            Step 3. Remember that pictures are stored in DCIM and navigate there

            Putting music on is essentially the same issue. Its not convienent. As much as I would love for everyone to be Tech Savvy like me and see how simple this is. Apple has got it right, a lot of people love their hand held through the entire process, I wish Google would allow that as a native option.

      2. And I am one of them. Tons of people flock to Apple because of iTunes – and correspondingly iPhones/iPods. I’ve used iTunes since the beginning, and have found it to be decent at what it does. I don’t understand why so many people hate on it. I have nearly 10,000 songs in my library and it works just as snappy as if I had 10 songs. Last time I used a media player on Android, I copied about 100 favorite songs to my microSD card, and it took literally 2 full minutes to show all the artists/albums in whatever app I was using every time I wanted to play a song – not fun. I think the phone would jump off a bridge if it was faced with 10,000 songs.

        1. People hate on it because it’s a buggy resource hog… It’s much easier to use ANY media organization package than it is to use iTunes; such as RhythmBox for Linux, or Windows Media Player for Windows. Both are part of the base install for their OS’s.

          Not sure when it was you last used a media player on Android, but I have over 800 songs on my device. No lag to bring up the artist/cover art/song info at all.

        2. I am buying a phone to use as a phone, not a music player. But I know I could do that too. I could care less about iTunes. To me it is like vanilla ice cream and that is the ONLY flavour you get with iPhart!

  3. Apple, iPhone fanboy comment in 3……2……1……

    Seriously, iOS and Android are magnets for ppl switching platforms too. I thought I would never see RIM in 3rd.

    1. No fanboy comment from me jroc….at least not yet! Lol! Not really surprised by this…..170+ Android phones to 1 means there are a lot more choices….I thought it would be wider

      1. I agree, choice will always win. It’s Mac vs PC all over again, just check the market share to see how that turned out.

        1. it’s NOT Mac vs PC because an iPhone and an Android phone cost the same.

      2. PC and Mac, all over again. And, the spread is only as small as it is, due to the first Android phone coming about a year after the first iPhone.

        1. Yep! I suspect the purpose of iKing’s comment was to minimize the fact that consumers actually PREFER android by deflecting to saying “well there’re 170+ so of course it’s winning”. Not sure if he notices it is quality over quantity, which will make itself clear with the demise of Nokia who has far more devices than those running Android.

          1. 3 points:

            1. You’re exactly right that’s what I’m saying. A platform that has a 169 phone (and growing) advantage over another SHOULD be ahead, although I would think by more than a mere percentage point. That either demonstrates the iPhone’s strength or Android’s weakness IMHO…..

            2. Quality over quantity??? In favor of Android??? U gotta be kidding….there’s not a single Android phone that can come remotely close to the quality of an iPhone 4, but that’s a matter of opinion….

            3. Not sure what the reference to Nokia proves. The majority phones sold by Nokia are dumbphones, not smartphones. They fired their CEO bcuz of his inability to produce an answer to the iPhone, so they are already irrelevant

          2. Let me ask you, why are you here? Since all I see is a foaming at the mouth, rabid fanboy. You are not doing a good job advocating the iPhone or iOS platform. You are just making yourself to look a fool. Painting a bad image of Apple and further to convince just how pretentious, elist and arrogant most Apple owners are. Good move, chief! :/

          3. 2. Quality over quantity??? In favor of Android??? U gotta be kidding….there’s not a single Android phone that can come remotely close to the quality of an iPhone 4, but that’s a matter of opinion….

            Out of the mouth of fanboys…

          4. I have to disagree with the quality statement, acknowledging that it is your opinion. some of the biggest name in the CEM business (known for their quality products) are now producing or developing Android based phones. The challenge for developing and maintaining Quality is on the shoulders of apple, at this point. IMHO. Light leaks and yellow spots on the screen with a low grade camera (ipad2) proximity sensor bugs, antenna and signal strength reporting algorithm errors and yellow spots on the screen (iphone4), exudes to a Quality product and a stringent QA process to you?? What is the iOS up to now 4.3.?? BTW, that last .?? is usually for BUG fixes.

            Oh and there is more than 1 iphone on the market today and there is more than 1 iphone 4 on the market as well.

          5. Or, it has to do with 2 year turnover on cellular contracts, and the iPhone having a 1 year head start.

            I’m actually shocked Android has caught up already.

          6. Nokia is irrelavent? That’s news to me. Last I heard Nokia and Microsoft just made a huge partnership to bring WP7 to Nokia phones. You may not think much of that deal, but in two or three years WP7 will have knocked iOS to third place.

          7. Simply put, for a simple iMind, your argument is Moot. Consumers prefer Android because it is a superior OS. Users generally prefer basic things like multi-tasking and being able to view websites that use flash.

          8. No phone currently made would replace my rooted EVO with unlimited data. Just my opinion…

          9. “A platform that has a 169 phone (and growing) advantage over another SHOULD be ahead”

            That number didnt work for Win Mo when the iPhone came on the scene back in 2007 tho…

            Yea more phones available means it SHOULD be ahead, but it has to be a good product too.

          10. “Yea more phones available means it SHOULD be ahead, but it has to be a good product too.”

            I agree that it has to be good. Or, in the minds of many Android users, “good enough”. I’ve said before and I’ll say it again, Android has done the best job of any of Apple’s competitors of providing an “iPhone-like” experience, making it easier for them to rationalize their purchase…..

            “Consumers prefer Android because it is a superior OS”

            No, geeks like yourself prefer Android bcuz it appeals to your inner mad-scientist. Many surveys have shown that a great many people chose Android bcuz the iPhone was not available on their carrier, not because they really wanted it. You know what that’s called? I’ll spell it for you….S-E-T-T-L-I-N-G…..

          11. Duh. The evo.

          12. In response to the settling commet:

            Damn iKing…SO CLOSE to having a decent opinion that wasn’t fanboyish…

            SO CLOSE….

          13. Lol! Alright jroc….I’ll retract that last statement!

          14. lol…

      3. It will be. It’s only been in the last year that the Android choices have gone nuts.

  4. It must’ve been hard for Nielsen to make this public, considering how much their bias for Apple has shown in the past. Even now they seem to want to minimize the difference.

  5. to tell you the truth i have never heard an apple fanboy tell me a legitimate reason why the iOS is better than android. All they say is, “Its an iPhone”

    1. To define _better_, one must also provide weight to desired features. If you simply want your phone to work, IOS is clearly better.

      It is more polished. It crashes less. All apps have same personality.

      You trade that ‘polish’ for more control over your device when you choose Android.

      for the record, I have a Droid. And curse every time i wait 30 seconds for hand free dialing. and the scroll stutters when looking for an app. And a reboot happens. And bluetooth doesn’t connect unless i start / stop the service.

      Does that happen on an iPhone? IDK. but i bet it doesn’t. hence, IOS is more polished. I chose to maintain some control. so I chose android.

      legitimate enough?

      1. Not legitimate, because it’s you experience, not mines, not everyone else’s. If you are having so many problems with your phone, you should get a replacement

      2. I do think Apple products on a whole are more polished than any other company I’ve ever seen. But they achieve this by supremely controlling the OS, the device, and it’s capabilities.

        A Droid? As in the phone older than a toddler? Try a modern Android device if you want speed and smoothness.

        And ANY Android phone should NEVER randomly reboot, unless it’s hardware is faulty or you’re running a custom ROM. I’ve seen plenty of friends with dead/defective/misbehaving iPhones and iPod Touches, so don’t think only Android can fail.

        1. Droid X

      3. I’ve seen the iPhone 3GS reboot more than once. I’ve seen the iPhone 4 touch screen be non responsive when selecting applications. iPhones are nowhere near perfect.

        1. I seen an iPhone 4 lock up while a co worker was showing us pictures in the gallery.

          To be fair, he did say crash less than Android tho. So he does acknowledges it isnt perfect.

        2. Funny I was just helping my boss with his iphone, it would not open 3rd party software, they would open and immediately shut down. Reboots did not fix the problem. I found online if you download another free app it fixes it but people that have the problem have to do it every once in awhile. Then my wife’s Ipad had a failed ios update and I had to re-install everything and re-pair it with itunes.

      4. What iOS have you been using. My browser crashes about once every 10 min. I purchased 1 apple device and its instability just drove me nuts. With the iOS browser, you have to be very careful with multiple pages open, otherwise it hangs for 3 min then kicks you to the home screen. Forget how it plays with 3rd party apps..anything that involved more then content consuption will give the iphone hell.

        1. Factory reset. Trying to assert that a non faulty iPhone will crash the browser every 10 minutes is just just dishonest.

          iOS is more stable then Android. EOD. Android will catch up in time no doubt, but they cant get there soon enough.

          1. And one cant do a factory reset on an Android phone to fix crashes, reboots, etc?

      5. I use both a (rooted) Samsung Galaxy S and a iPhone 4 and fully agree with you.
        The Apple just does what you expect out-of-the-box.
        The SGS gives me more freedom to customize my phone (like setting a mp-3 as sms-tone)

        But I NEVER experience unexpected reeboot(s) or crashes nor unstable behavior.
        The SGS just runs very smooth with Froyo 2.2.1 (Dutch)
        These apps are installed on my SGS:

        Both OS have there strong and weak points.
        In daily use I’m satisfied with both of them.
        The iPhone 4 has the better battery life.
        The SGS clearly has the better screen though.
        But if the SGS-2 comes available I’ll be selling my iPone 4 ;)

      6. I used to have an iPod touch, but was sick of having to carry around 2 devices. Obviously I was using iTunes to manage my music, and I had a bunch of apps for my iPod so an iPhone seemed to be the logical choice.

        A combination of 2 things lead me to get an Android phone (HTC Aria) Instead:

        The big turn off for me was Bluetooth audio. I have a pair of Bluetooth headphones with playback controls on them which work great with my laptop, but the iPod only supports play/pause:

        The other thing I was sick of is iOS updates continually breaking 3rd party accessories. I had a Belkin FM transmitter that was working great, until I updated iOS and then started getting “this accessory is not supported by iPod” messages every 10 minutes.

        Now I use Amazon MP3 to buy all my music, and I use Windows Media Player to manage all my music. I actually like it better than I thought I would.

      7. I must be the only Android user that has yet to have any android system problems. My EVO never makes me wait 30 secs for anything. My apps never lag when I scroll through them. My phone never reboots itself, or has yet to crash. I’ve just installed 2.3.3 in my phone, and it’s running smoother than ever. Fresh EVO 4 beta 3.

      8. That is the biggest misconception about iOS .. IT IS NOT FLAWLESS .. does it work better than a lot of android phones .. yes ..maybe .. especially the lower end ones and the crap Motoblur ones..

        but it has the same issues that you have with any smartphone… it’s a computer.. it lags at times with too much overload .. it freezes plenty and there are plenty of quirks with it ..

        i have an Iphone 3g and an iphone 3gs that I use as my Ipod (i gave the 3g to my bro because it was too laggy on ios 4) .. and I’ve seen plenty of hiccups.. nothing too major but hiccups nonetheless and I’ve only been using them as ipod and for gaming.

        I have an EVO .. it’s not flawless but I can’t say the Iphone “works” better than it does..

      9. “If you simply want your phone to work, IOS is clearly better.”

        yes because iPhones are miraculous devices designed by magical elves and are perfect in every way.

        No, it’s just another phone with its own set of problems and benefits.

    2. Gawd, you just don’t understand. It just FEEEEELs right. It just works.. ya know? iTunes man! Does android have iTunes? How do you like going out of your way to disable security and download pirate app’s only to get a virus.. gawd your such a moron for using android.. Now excuse me, I’m late for Art class.. I so loved art like 5 years before everyone else…

      1. Screw iTunes!!! Can’t stand it. I’m glad android has many choices like Amazon music.. does iPhone have Amazon music? As far as viruses go, you can only get them if you download third party apps from China mainly!

      2. Where is the Flash? Even artsy fartsy people want to use flash! How can you use flash if you use iFartsy?

    3. They wouldn’t know good technology if their life depended on it. They just think their friends will think they are cool if they own an iPhone.

  6. While the Android-iOS battle is in full force, what I find particularly interesting in this study (although not terribly surprising) is just how small a percentage is going to webOS. HP has a lot of work in front of them if they want to make their investment a serious contender in the space! It will be interesting to see what they do with webOS 3.0, as well as their entry into the tablet space.

  7. I think both platforms are good , and I’ve owned both, but they tend to cater to different crowds
    IOS is about stability, itunes interfacing, a controlled enviroment where every app functions similairly, but it comes at a price, lame multitasking, notifications
    application control

    Android is about openness, user control, bleeding edge features, their are many alternatives for users who want an itunes like experience with Android. Winamp has a feature to sync with android phones that works very well. HTC has HTC sync to sync pictures and music with your phone. But since Android is about openness it doesn’t force one method on you. This comes at the price of being slightly more confusing for less technical users, but many manufacturers are making great strides in simplifying android for the casual user, though I understand why some users still prefer IOS

    The reality is both apple and android fanboys are both wrong, neither is superior they both have strengths and weaknesses, tailor recommendations to what type of user is asking, not your personal preference.

    I’m an android user obviously but I still recommend the iphone to certain people I know who don’t want the complexity of android or are very reliant on itunes

  8. i love when ppl say no android phone come close to quality to an iphone…yea cuz they are smart..i have a few friends that have been through 3 or 4 iphones because they dropped them..the phone is made out of glass which makes it less durable..the new htc sensation looks like it great quality and blows the iphone 4 out of the water and prob will blow the iphone 5 out of the water also…lets face it apple makes a good phone but there os is outdated and the notification system is horrible…oooo its easy to use yea for simple minded ppl lmao…htc/android phone experience is so much better its customizable and has the great dyanmic widgets…put a htc sensation,evo 3d and iphone 5 next to each other when they come out and have ppl play around with them…8 out of 10 ppl wont chose an iphone..and those 2 ppl are over the age of 60..well i guess if u dont have an iphone…u dont want an iphone

  9. Yawn, you all can carry on with your food fight. Meanwhile the MARKET is making the decisions and clearly the MARKET has decided Android is better. You cannot deny that!

  10. Win7 mobile lol. I give M$ one more year before they let it die on the vine. Just like they have done with all their other failures. Always the same story. They throw massive marketing $’s at it for about 6months. The development effort last about 1 year. Then stagnant for another year as the sales figures disappoint. Then they quietly start to ignore it and move resources elsewhere.

  11. we are expecting android will take the market

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