Android Continues to Close In on Apple’s Smartphone Lead


Depending on which report and how you read it, Android has already begun to overtake the iPhone as the leader in smartphone market share. That isn’t quite the case yet in the latest report from Nielsen, one of the most trusted sources of consumer ratings, though Google’s open source OS is closer than ever. Despite Apple gains bringing iOS up to a 28.6 percent share, the gap is closing with Android seeing its own increase to 25.8 percent. Last month’s figures put apple at 27.9 percent and Android at 22.7 percent.

Stack up the same platforms with only the past 6 months of new users taken into consideration and Android holds a firm lead a 40.8 percent compared to the iPhone’s 26.9 percent. Considering how popular smartphones were this holiday season it seems likely that Android will come out on top of iOS very very shortly.

[via MobileBurn]

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  1. Who can honestly say they didn’t know this was going to happen?

  2. Its a known fact the Android is a very popular os and will continue to be one for the simple fact on how open it is and how many manufactures want to put Android on any device they put out. Iphone is good (from past experience) but the interface is all the same people want to customize what is rightfully theirs and Android is the way to go. Give this chart a couple more months and see where Google stacks up to Apple

  3. You’d be surprised how many ppl, used to laugh at me when I called this way back, many of them have since come around though.

  4. Android in commercials is getting more common in the U.S. as well. Now people are associating Google phones with Andy, especially the Sprint EVO commercial. A year ago if you asked people what Android was, it wouldn’t have gotten nearly a good response as it does now. It’s also interesting to note by the charts above that it’s come a long way in only half as much time as IOS. Both charts together are also showing what we already know, iPhone3 users upgraded to the iPhone4 but few people actually jumped on the iPhone wagon from the outside. I think that’s where Google is going to dominate, new customers all the time.

  5. Am I the only one who dont find these figures interesting? It is obviously hard, if not impossible, to compete with the number of manufactures that uses Android. This is just somewhat of a return to the market before Apple changed the mobile industry a few years ago, it’s basically the time it has taken for the others to become competitive.

  6. Agreed with above. But one reason android achieved this in half the time is cause apple had already started the craze. Seconds and thirds will always do it in shorter times.

  7. Interesting to see that BB is dropping as fast as Android is climbing. Which to me would indicate that 1) BB phones and improvements in there OS has slowed incredibly and they now offer mediocre phones and 2) Seems as though BB MAY be switching to Android phones.

    Also interesting is the fact that the iPhone is staying steady.

    This is sad though….every carriers and dozens of phones from a dozen manufacturers are ALMOST catching up to a single phone on a single network (in the US).

    Thats like saying ALL Japanese import cars are finally beating Ford. Not a fair argument, but fun for us fans!

  8. I am an android user (Droid X) but I think there is going to be a significant bump in the road coming for android with I*hone coming to Verizon. A lot of androids success has come from Verizon customers in the US and while the I*phone has definite flaws it is a great device and has a lot of 3rd party hardware options that android devices don’t.

  9. Well obviously. Android has over 100 phones and lot of them are free or cheap. Average Joe will pick free or cheap phone. Apple has only 1 phone a year. It’s amazing that iOS and android are the same now. Android should already be ahead way more.

  10. In reading the above comment, it would only apply if all the Japanese cars that were beating Ford had the same drive train. The one thing that the Android surge is showing is that those that are taking up the Android operating system really don’t care what the hardware is – though it should be capable and robust – what they’re looking for is the open source operating system. Android OS on a smartphone isn’t really much different than the Windows OS on a PC: It let’s you decide what you want to do with your very expensive little device. Manufacturers should be getting the drift by now – You’re all making good hardware, some better than other, but what we really want is a very good operating system that allows us to us our smartphones the way we want to. Android is doing that, no matter what the hardware. So, if you want to put a standard drive train in every Japanese cars that is head and shoulders better than Ford, then maybe you’ll see them beat Ford. Apparently Android is better than Apple, no matter what hardware it’s on.

  11. Who didn’t see this coming?
    It’s Like comparing Apples to….. Windows…
    Options and choices. Who would’ve thought people wanted them? lol

  12. This is sad. Android is by far a better operating system than iOS, but I know a lot of people who have android phones who don’t even realize it. They don’t what android is, all they know is they have mytouches, droids etc. google needs to advertise android to show its true potential. And look how long its taken android to catch up to just one phone, carried by only one network, made by one company! Stupid apple and there marketing team!

  13. Perfectly fair comparison. The are comparing an OS – not a device. iOS could easily be opened up to other manufacturers, but it will not be – because Apple doesn’t like to share.
    For the first 6 months I owned my Droid, NOBODY around me had one, but since around July, I now have NUMEROUS family/friends that have android devices. It seems like I am sending out my favorite apps list weekly to somebody new.

  14. Andriod already past iOS in marketshare Worldwide, these figures only show the US market.

  15. I am a long time customer of Verizon and a strong advocate for them and I know some people are not butthey have always treated me right. Have used AT&T in the past both mobile and home. Hate their coverage and customer service and no longer have either mobile or home service from AT&T (don’t even have home phone service anymore). All of that said I always wanted an Iphone from the beginning but because of the comments above would not purchase one. Tried several Blackberries and I now have a Droid X, HTC Incredible, Samsung Tablet and my wife has a Droid 2. All have been excellent products. I also have an Ipod Touch which I do not use much and bought an Ipad through Verizon on a Friday took back on Sunday and got the Tab. Don’t regret that decision. What people need to understand is that if you purchase an Apple product from Verizon and don’t like it you will have to pay a restock fee when you return it ($70 for the Ipad and I was lucky that they gave me a credit because of a problem I had with the Ipad). This is Apple’s rules not Verizon’s. This will be true with the Iphone. After using the Android products I absolutely no longer desire an Iphone even on Verizon!!! Oh, and I can hold my Android phones any way I want to while making a call without some kind of a case. I do think that people who already have the Iphone will switch from AT&T to Verizon when they get the Iphone and maybe some new customers who are not familiar with Android may purchase the Iphone but don’t believe that those with Android will switch to the Iphone.

  16. LOL @ Steve Jobs as he gets in his helicopter to fly to his billion dollar yacht for a ride to relax on his private vacation island.

  17. Just a reminder that it’s not all Android handsets vs 1 Apple phone. It’s all Android handsets against all iOS devices which include iPod touch 1, 2, 3, 4, iphone 1, 2, 3, 4 and iPad. GG Andy

  18. Semajhan,
    Ok, since Apple was second to the smartphone and application scene behind the Handspring/Palm Treo, let’s give credit to the true innovator here……Handspring/Palm.

  19. Very correct Semajhan! Well said. I am tired of Apple fanboys claiming that Apple invented everything.

    Object oriented GUI – Xerox, not Apple
    Smartphone – PALM/Handspring, not Apple

  20. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? Do you know that Fringe division uses Android? iPhone, Schmiphone!!

  21. android’s already ahead worldwide, just not in the US where iphone had a head start.

    /goodbye iphone, good riddance

  22. @Breeze

    I dont know all of the details; but if this is true then it is more amazing. If this were simply IOS iPhones vs Android OS phones…then its a different story. But if it is simply market saturation, that as well is different. I have now owned 2 android phones. Between my GF and I we have had 5 total phones

  23. RIP BB! Not surprising but encouraging. So now everyone tells me they have a “Droid” no matter who makes their android handset. (like telling someone from SF you’re going to Frisco” Excited they all now have android, perhaps they will learn what their phones are capable of doing.

    With these #’s why are all th 3rd party hardware items all stil for iOS?? Clearly, we ALL DON”T have Apple devices. Free enterprie, start making some good stuff look @ all the potential customers.

  24. These numbers seem right on to me. Let’s not forget, the iPhone has a two year head start people, and they gained so much of the market share when it first came out. It’s just taking a while to undo the brainwashing that Apple did so well in ’08-’09.

  25. Goodbye BB, was nice knowing you! May their slow death ala windows mobile style start…now.

  26. Yeah but soon the Verizon iPhone will drop and that means more iPhones in the US!

    Yeah, maybe. Even if it does happen, I doubt it will have the impact the iPhone using analysts think it will.

  27. what people are saying about iPhone sales going up when it comes to Verizon is probably true.
    Here in the UK iOS sales rocketed up when O2 lost their exclusivity

  28. BlackBerry will still be strong in the business market until Android adds device level encryption. There are numerous companies and now federal departments that will not allow Android usage and mandate BlackBerry for work (until Android implements device level encryption.)

    Come on Google! If you just implement this and add remote device wiping as a google admin app, then your win is complete. Otherwise, BB will keep you out of many businesses.

    If Android gets these two features as native, BB will crash to 0% market share in about 3 months.

  29. Andriod is great but for a noob to the os .hardware makes a different. If the iphone runs and app efficiently and the andriod phone runs it slow .they will problaby blame the OS instead of the hardware .

  30. The real question is – can there be a SINGlE android phone that can compete with the Iphone – probably not.

  31. @Ma0 above

    Can Apple compete with Android smartphones without stuffing their useless MP3 players with iOS? probably not.

  32. Nice. Android rules!!!

  33. @Ma0 funny, here i was thinking iOS runs on 5 devices. 4 iPhones and a crapPad.

  34. AnonD:
    I am strictly talking phone by phone, not mp3 player. I don’t think I mentioned anything about other devices.

  35. Help me here. What is so great about the Iphone? I don’t see it. Have the Touch. Granted it is not a phone but has all the other features as the phone. Not impressed against the Android devices I own. Apple has kept the same basic Icons and OS. Just don’t see it. I love Android and they are changing for the better every day and give me more options.

  36. I came to my D2Global from a BB Storm.(worst phone ever) While traveling overseas during the holidays,to my surprise,it seemed that the places I went, Blackberry was the the phone to have. RIM have a huge push over seas. I went to buy a SIM for My D2G and could not get into to one store for the crowd. Most were selling out of BBs and taking rain-checks. Having a BB was definitely “cool”. I think it had to do with the image of BB as a “businessman’s” phone. Wow!

  37. I’m a Droidx owner. I love my phone. So what happens when Verizon finally sells the iPhone? Shouldn’t Apple get a huge bump? I know some people will just be switching their AT&T iPhone for a Verizon iPhone. I still think Android is going to keep growing, but the Verizon iPhone will slow that down a bit for a few weeks.

  38. Hey, and our alarms work to boot!

  39. Well they have the os down I’m on gingerbread and loving it.but the need to get the devs to truly best apple. The games on iphone 4 are leaps and bounds above the ones on the best android!

  40. As a business person, I have to say I will likely switch from my Droid X to the iPhone when it comes to Verizon. The change will be based primarily on the fact that the iPhone has better security – essential!

  41. even back in 2007 I thought black berries were garbage for some reason my friends thought they were cool.
    I had samsung black jacks which were better than dumb black berries…

    Now the same people have i phones and I have android…
    once again I’m ahead of the curve

  42. Real question is what single Android model phone could beat the iPhone 4 in sales?

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