Research firm Flurry on Tuesday reported its estimate of sales of the Google Nexus One smartphone through its first 74 days of availability, finding that it has lagged far behind the iPhone and the Motorola Droid with 135,000 units in circulation, compared to one million iPhones and 1.05 million Droids. However, Google brought the Nexus One to AT&T the same day; availability on another carrier (it launched on T-Mobile) could help boost those sales.
Flurry came to its conclusion based on its analytics technology, which is embedded in applications that have been downloaded to more than 80 percent of all iPhones and Android devices, the company said.
Peter Farago, author of the blog post discussing this latest news, said that the 74-day benchmark was chosen because that’s when Apple hit the one million milestone with the original iPhone. While the Nexus One’s 74th day is Friday, March 19, Flurry decided to publish the news now and forecast sales for the rest of the week.
Mr. Farago noted three reasons why he thinks the Droid has sold so well, particularly compared to the iPhone: consumer perception of smartphones changed during the two-and-a-half years between the launch of the first iPhone; Droid’s access to consumers is greater because Verizon has more subscribers than AT&T, at least when comparing devices’ launch dates; and Droid shipped right before the 2009 holiday selling period.
He concluded: “As Google and Apple continue to battle for the mobile marketplace, Google Nexus One may go down as a grand, failed experiment or one that ultimately helped Google learn something that will prove important in years to come. Apple’s more vertically integrated strategy vs. Google’s more open Android platform approach offer strengths and weaknesses that remind us of PC vs. Mac from the 1980’s.
“A key difference this time around is that Apple is enjoying much more 3rd party developer support, whose innovative applications push the limits of what the hardware can do. Ultimately, however, developers support hardware with the largest installed base first. For Android to make progress faster, from a sales perspective, it needs more Droids and fewer Nexus Ones going forward.”