Male Android Cheapskates To Dominate Mobile Market


Check out the latest Admob reports and a few glaring characteristics will jump out at you – we’ll point them out so you don’t have to sift through the entire report:

(1) Android users love their free apps


(2) The Market has a lot of Mandroids browsing


And this is exactly what Android’s detractors would say – Android is for geeky guys and penny pinchers. Instead, I’d say it suggests the success of the Open Source mentality and the Laissez-faire approach on market regulation. Google has provided an arena where free solutions that are equal or close to paid solutions are widely available. That doesn’t mean developers can’t make bank – go ahead and support your apps with advertising and sponsorships – if I’m getting an app for free I have no problem seeing ads, knowing that it’s what compensates the devs.

What I thought was the MOST impressive from the report was something I’ve been saying all along: Android will dominate the iPhone by sheer power in numbers.


And don’t tell me about “quality over quantity” because there are PLENTY of people who think the Droid and Nexus One both surpass the iPhone in awesomeness. And, there are many others who wouldn’t prefer any of the 3, but instead something like the Hero, CLIQ or Eve. Choices, choices, choices.

Another thing made obvious by the above chart is that I have superior photoshop skills.

[Via Admob, PDF Report]

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. I agree, althoug i think the numbers are not telling the whole thruth. An iPhone owner can buy his apps, wherever in the world he lives. For Android, people like me (living in Norway), still cannot buy apps. Just you wait. The moment Google get their thumbs ut of their ***, and opens up the market, i alone will buy more apps than all iPhone users combined ;-)

  2. so does this mean that the cliq has sold as many or more units than the mytouch 3G?

  3. Does the report mention that a great portion of Android user doesn’t have access to paid applications?

  4. im from canada and i cant get paid apps!! my milestone has a signed bootloader so its UNROOTABLE so only solution is to get a at&t sim card and go on wifi,next time im in seattle i need to buy one but there are a small few high quality apps in slideme u can buy

  5. and that being able to pay with a creditcard only, is just lame…

  6. @phonixor, what carrier are you on? Tmo rolled out carrier billing for the market. I don’t know if others have caught up, tho. @John, good question. It’s hard to know whether these things class the MTG3 separately or as an “HTC Dream” which is what this model is worldwide.

    What I get tired of seeing is free apps rated low with comments like “would rate higher with no ads” “get rid of the ads” “too many ads”. I don’t know how these people expect to get good apps! Pixies? I bought the Pro version of a wonderful app (Note Everything – LOVE IT!) felt it was worth much more that what developer was charging and went to his website and donated more! Developers aren’t going to develop for the platform if they can’t make money from it. Google MUST open paid apps to the rest of the world.

  7. Android Market still sucks. The user outside US will suffer.
    In some countries, the devs even can’t publish paid apps.

  8. I really wish phandroid would stop being so keen to convince us all that Android really is the best at everything ever really honestly look. Aside from the fact that you’re mostly preaching to the choir, it just makes you sound a bit crazy, like going onto an X-Box or PS3 website and them constantly framing everything in the context of how their console is better than all the others.

  9. Since there are so many free apps in the android market, there is never really any need to buy apps.

  10. While I like to believe that Android will dominate in numbers and choice, the stats you persent contradict your claim. 25% of the phone requests are for iPhones. A combined number of 8.6% requests for new handsets are for iPhone (according to the chart you presented. How does that translate to more Androids than iPhones on the market? Just saying…

  11. (correction to the above post)

    8.6% requests for new handsets are for Android

  12. The situation of paid apps on Android is definitely disappointing. One day, developers will give up on it and move to another platform that makes money and Android market will be nothing more than geeks place for experimental projects and we will never see top-quality games from like EA or id software.

  13. As a female Droid owner, this makes me sad :(

  14. Not only are you citing AdMob, which is only opt-in through ads and thus has a tiny window, but you are really going to say that developers will waste their time on Android when these same people are using free solutions? Are you incapable of seeing that the platform where users are willing to pay for content will be the one that most devs will aim for? And do not even pretend to act like advertisements can cover development costs, that is a joke. You are sounding more like a zealot every day.

  15. I’ll second the comment from earlier… “Android Market still sucks”. In my mind, it really is the weak link in getting paid Android apps flowing. I also think the market is very immature right now. There is still a large number of people who think you have to have an iPhone if you want to have cool apps.

    I’d be very interested to see a new look at these statistics in late February 2010

  16. @Tyson. You are misunderstanding what a “request” is. It is NOT tracking “requests for new handsets” as you state.

    AdMob is in the business of banner and text based ads. They track “requests” for these ads from over 15K websites when they are visited and then analyze the data from those requests (handset type and capabilities, carrier, etc).

    Apple has dominated this for the last few years, changing the way mobile devices are being used. Mobile web activity has sky rocketed, crippling AT&Ts network on several occassions.

    I think Rob’s point about Android’s success is to look how fast 5 out of the top 10 handsets making requests to access these tracked websites are now Android based.

  17. Stupid dorks who give away free apps must live in their mother’s basements.

  18. The Android market originally only offered free apps and as mentioned above still does in many places. That free app culture will be a difficult one to change.
    Improving Google Checkout may increase the sales of paid apps (if the majority of users accounts become linked to a payment method as with the iTunes store) but this won’t happen overnight.
    In my opinion the mobile advertisements model can make money for developers and is a viable alternative to the paid app model.

  19. @maj, @interesting –
    couldn’t disagree more. so only 21% of users buy apps once a month and this means the users aren’t willing to pay for apps? BS. I interpret it to mean that the percentage of apps worthy of paying for on the Android Market is poor. I mean, look at the number of dudes using android. who are the predominant gamers? dudes. once you get more devs that make more and better games, you’ll see that first chart improve. It’s only a matter of time

  20. sooo…. how can they get away with calling the ipod touch a phone? or a separate platform. i dont think that really counts at all.

  21. This is ridiculous. How the hell do you draw the assumption that Android will dominate from that chart? Just because there are more actual handsets with Android on it than the Iphone (of which there is only one), that doesn’t change the fact that the iPhone continues to outsell the SUM OF ALL Android phones at a ratio of 4 or 5 to 1.

  22. I think the main reason why free apps dominate the Android market is that a huge number of developers can’t sell their Apps on the market and are thus left with the choice of free (ad-supported) or not developing anything. Add to that how poor Google checkout is, one shouldn’t be surprised that free apps dominate on Android.

    The question is whether Google will ever get their act together and fix it so that small user-base applications will ever have a chance.

  23. @Sanjay Jha…”Stupid dorks who give away free apps must live in their [SIC] mother’s basements.” Haha you must have an iPhone and are just pissed you have to drop bank to get most ANY app. I dev for Android and make all my money on ads. Get a life. Oh yeah, Android OS ships out on 60000 devices per day. In 24 months its market share will be approaching Apple.

  24. @ MAJ have not seen u post in awhile…let’s hope what your saying never everrrr happens

  25. Just want to add my voice to show the “stats” must always be interpreted.

    I purchased my Android phone less than one month ago. I do NOT have access to paid apps on the Android Market because I live in Taiwan. (This is for Google: BOOOOOOOOOOOO!)

    I have purchased five apps in three weeks, ranging from $19.99 to $0.99, with an average price of $8.19. I don’t think these Admob stats know anything about my purchase patterns.

    However, I beg to differ with the “conclusion” of this article. From the statistics reported here, 5 of the top 10 devices in this report have Android on them. So what? There is no realistic reason to conclude that 5/10 shows that Android will “dominate” the 2/10 showing from Apple. The total number of different devices available with the Android OS is meaningless unless that eventually results in significant total marketshare. Having 100 devices that each sell 1000 will only result in 100,000 units sold. That’s a tiny number when it comes to mobile devices.

    It’s certainly not bad news for Android, but if you are holding Apple stock, things are looking mighty fine about now. According to the latest Gartner report for worldwide mobile phone sales, “the two best performers in 2009 were Android and Apple. Android increased its market share by 3.5 percentage points in 2009, while Apple’s share grew by 6.2 percentage points from 2008….” (from PalmInfocenter). So Apple sold 24.8 million units vs Android at 6.8. But does having 5 devices vs. 2 devices mean Android will eventually pass Apple with those numbers? There’s no evidence _here_ that will happen.

    Personally I hope Android does dominate some day, just to prove that a more open system is preferable to closed-up, locked-down, you-will-do-it-our-way systems. So, sure, hopefully Android dominates some day, but this set of statistics shouldn’t be leveraged to try to say so.

  26. Of the words
    their, they’re and there
    I used the correct one amd the spelling is correct.

    Are you a product of Kentucky public schools or did your parents name you after KY jelly?

  27. Why is the iPod Touch included? its not a smartphone. I guess its so the iPhone has some company.

    Basically heres how I see it. The iPhone is out there in the spotlight and has been for the last year and more. All the big sites and developers have ads saying “download our iPhone app!” which doesn’t mean there aren’t any Android apps, iPhone is just more well known to the general masses. Along comes Android and shakes things up and the tech crowd and early adopters and they are very happy with the phones. But Android hasn’t made it really mainstream yet. But the thing that is telling is that Android phones are gaining a large chunk of the market share and gaining it fast. Sure the iPhone has enjoyed its time on top with virtually no contenders to bother it, but its days are numbered as supreme ruler of the universe; As more people become aware that there are options out there the faster the iPhone’s share of the market will dwindle. Just my own personal prediction.

  28. It’s a combination of having lots of Markets without paid apps, and the openness of the Market giving rise to lots of free (or ad-supported) apps that are good, that has led to Android owners for the moment downloading mainly free apps. However, even without a paid market where I am (nor a rooted phone), I have downloaded and paid for a few apps, because I could buy and download them from the makers’ own sites (of course I researched and checked first to make sure they were trustworthy). I’m sure I’m not the only one. So I do believe these stats will change, IF more Markets have paid apps.

  29. Sanjay, don’t get your feathers ruffled because you’re using english as a second, third, fourth language. SIC means “Said In Context] and has nothing to do with spelling. He was making fun of you for being a jerk.
    So tell me, are you bragging that you can use a word AND spell it correctly once, or are you a fan of AMD computers?
    In either case, you need to get back to your job of frustrating people over the customer service line instead of trying to imply that someone who points out your flagrant ignorance is some sort of backwoods hick.

  30. Sic
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Sic is a Latin word meaning “thus”, “so”, “as such”, or “in such a manner”. In writing, it is placed within the quoted material, in square brackets – or outside it, in regular parentheses – and usually italicized – [sic] – to indicate that an incorrect or unusual spelling, phrase, punctuation, and/or other preceding quoted material has been reproduced verbatim from the quoted original and is not a transcription error.

    The word sic may be used to show that an uncommon or archaic usage is reported faithfully: for instance, quoting the U.S. Constitution:
    The House of Representatives shall chuse [sic] their Speaker …
    It may also be used to highlight a perceived error, sometimes for the purpose of ridicule, as in this example from The Times:
    Warehouse has been around for 30 years and has 263 stores, suggesting a large fan base. The chain sums up its appeal thus: “styley [sic], confident, sexy, glamorous, edgy, clean and individual, with it’s [sic] finger on the fashion pulse.”[2]
    On occasion, sic has been misidentified as an abbreviation for “said in context”, “spelled in context”, “said in copy”, “spelling is correct”, “spelled incorrectly” and other phrases.[3] These are all backronyms from sic.

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