Google Overtakes Apple in U.S. Smartphone Market Share

| iPhone

comScore this week released its mobile phone industry data for the three-month period ending November 2010, showing Google’s Android OS overtaking Apple’s iOS for second place in the U.S. smartphone market. Google’s share jumped from 19.6% in the previous period to 26%, while Apple nudged up from 24.2% to 25%.

RIM remains in first place, although its share dropped from 37.6% in the August period to 33.5% in November. Microsoft and Palm remained in fourth and fifth place, respectively, although both of their shares declined too: Microsoft went from 10.8% to 9% and Palm went from 4.6% to 3.9%.

Smartphone ownership grew 10% in the U.S., reaching 61.5 million users.

Among all mobile OEMs in the U.S., Samsung remained in first place, growing from 23.6% to 24.5%. LG, Motorola, RIM, and Nokia rounded out the top five, with none of them changing position from August.

comScore also looks at mobile content usage, which was unchanged from last time too: text messages are the most popular activity, followed by web browsing, app usage, social networking sites and blogs, games, and music.

Comments

Jose

Where are all the Crapple fanboys?!

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Note that is not a 6.4% jump in sales share, it’s a 6.4% jump in the share of active subscribers using Android. Android already outsells iPhone by more than 3:2.

There is likely another 20% of RIM market share for Android to gain in the next year before it turns around and looks square at iPhone. The Verizon Unicorn won’t do a thing to stop the bleeding because Apple does not want to compete price-wise with better and more compatible phones. Social integration (Facebook) will probably be the prime marketshare driver this year. It feels built-in on Android 2.2, stilly appy and crappy on iPhone.

Len

Never a better time to get an Android device. I don’t see iOS catching back up to Android ever again. Welcome to the future of Mobile.

Tiger

I guess it’s a matter of who you believe, comScore or Nielsen.
Their figures see them all tightly holding between 25 and 28%.

http://www.macrumors.com/2011/01/04/iphone-continues-to-hold-off-android-in-u-s-smartphone-market-share/

FlipFriddle

So what. Apple is still minting money, when that slows down they’ll try something else. A little competition keeps things fresh, and the Windows phone is an unknown commodity at this time.
The sheer number of these Android things with their different screen sizes, makes me loathe working with a vendor to develop an Android app for something we already have at work for iPhone and BB. That could explain why the first vendor bailed on doing an Android version. The festival of “me-too” tablets at CES is just going to make that worse.

anonymous

I understand this short headline is designed to be attention grabbing, but it’s one sided to the point of misleading readers.

Google doesn’t design or sell smartphones (with some minor experimental exceptions).  They give away an open source OS (Android).  The term “Market Share” suggests they actually sell something when they don’t.  Google’s Android device and carrier partners have achieved a slightly larger combined U.S. Smartphone market share than Apple which only partners with AT&T at this time.

Apple continues to capture the largest profit share in the Smartphone market, and the gap is increasing.

If you include other mobile devices (iPod Touch and iPad), Apple’s iOS market share lead is growing and attracting more investment, while Google’s Android is falling further behind.

Same facts, different interpretation.  The reason “Market Share” matters is its relationship to scale, profitability, and marketing buzz.  This article is mostly marketing buzz while it ignores the business fundamentals of scale and profitability.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@Tiger: The second chart in the link you posted is key. It basically says that the “error” component in these stats is plus/minus 2 months. The trend is undeniable.

@psichel: Nice spin. Perhaps Android going from 0% to 26% in about 1 year is also a collective rejection of the way Apple does business? Android brings many more on board and lets each try to sink or swim its own way. Apple sits there and does breast stroke. Oops, wrong analogy.

FlipFriddle

Until iPhones are available on multiple vendors, Android growth as a rejection of Apple’s way of doing business is merely spin on your part. You could just as easily say it is a rejection of the way Nokia does business, or Blackberry does business as well? Google makes no money from Android (apart from selling it’s users data to advertisers) and at some point their shareholders may take them to task for it, for such a low ROI.
As long as Apple is making profit and their developers are making profit, marketshare Apple’s shareholders win.

Lee Dronick

So what. Apple is still minting money, when that slows down they?ll try something else. A little competition keeps things fresh, and the Windows phone is an unknown commodity at this time.
The sheer number of these Android things with their different screen sizes, makes me loathe working with a vendor to develop an Android app for something we already have at work for iPhone and BB. That could explain why the first vendor bailed on doing an Android version. The festival of ?me-too? tablets at CES is just going to make that worse.

Yup, competition is good, balkanization is not.

Tiger

I can’t skip this. What EVER made anybody think Apple is sitting there doing nothing but breast stroke? Talk about a fallacy. This year, iPhone 5 will come out. 2 billion apps sold, version 2 of the iPad will come out.

Really, that’s resting on your laurels. Hardly.

In fact, would Android even be on the market if Apple hadn’t done something about the stagnating mobile industry? Would any other vendor be now putting out a tablet or in some cases pseudo-tablets if iPad and the iPod Touch weren’t out? Blow smoke all you want, but the industry has changed. Android is good competition, but it’s also coming from a place of “catching up”. Google wasn’t ready, they got caught with their pants down. Microsoft the same. Nokia, RIM. They all got their butts handed to them.

Yeah, who was resting on their laurels???

So the game of cat and mouse continues. Some advance, some decline. It is after all, business. Not everybody can win all the time. But at least the customers are seeing continual improvements. Maybe not as fast as we’d like, but they do come.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I can?t skip this. What EVER made anybody think Apple is sitting there doing nothing but breast stroke? Talk about a fallacy. This year, iPhone 5 will come out. 2 billion apps sold, version 2 of the iPad will come out.

Nothing wrong with breast stroke. Except that it’s a one-trick pony in a freestyle swimming competition. Meanwhile, Google handset partners are bringing phones with fins and propellers. Here are some questions Apple for which cannot answer “yes” today, but the Android ecosystem can answer in the affirmative:

* Can I get a bigger phone?
* Can I get one that’s white?
* Can I get one with real licensed Corning Gorrila Glass?
* Can I get one that plays Flash?
* Can I get one with a porn store?
* Can I get one on Verizon or Sprint or T-Mobile?
* Do I have to exploit a crashing security flaw in the operating system or built-in app in order to gain complete control over my phone? (EDIT: This is no for most Android phones, yes for iPhone, not a good thing to get a yes on.)
* Can I replace the battery, add storage, and mount the phone’s storage on my computer desktop?
* Can I safely listen to text messages and reply to them with voice while driving?
* Can I safely initiate navigation while driving?

Android can answer “yes” to these things today because there are many players bringing what they think is important to the game. It’s the science of evolution vs. religious “intelligent design”. Apple just does breast stroke.

jfbiii

My, the braying of the asses is LOUD today.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

My, the braying of the asses is LOUD today.

There are two kinds of rabid iPhone fanboys. There are those in denial of the Android domination (like Tiger). I’m trying to help you guys (a) find better phones and (b) get off the bandwagon before people start to notice you’re the last one there. And then there are those like jfbiii who never have anything to say except poorly veiled insult. You are such a clever 12-year old, jfbiii. Now, if you’ll spend 1/2 the time trying to refute one of my points above as you have trying to come with a way to call me an ass, you might start to realize that the market has a point.

mhikl

Namaste, jfbii.

But aren’t they entertaining, all these diarrheic diatibes from the Envygirls. They are so cute in their lacy words of spite. So syllabically shallow, so simple in sight, so cattily screwy in sense. Are these dorks so lonely and desperate they have nowhere else to get their jollies than to crank out hate and redundant fiction to the vastly superior intelligence that makes up the contributors to our forums?

Ever checked out the empty chatter that sprouts from their discussion groups? It’s the same rage against Apple with nary an Applefan in sight. That can?t be fun. At their dispirited sites there are never any crazy great developments to laud and embrace. There, the discussions are the same; all based on fear and Apple envy. Envy, jealousy and outrage do dull discussion make.

Better crapping on the superiority of Apple, I guess, than spending their hours salivating over porn or pulling wings off flies. Boooooring.

mhikl

Ever notice that any time Android is mentioned in the press, it is never on their own merits but always contrasted against something someone thinks they can do better than Apple.

mrmwebmax

+

Nothing wrong with breast stroke. Except that it?s a one-trick pony in a freestyle swimming competition. Meanwhile, Google handset partners are bringing phones with fins and propellers.

Bosco, if Google and its handset partners are bringing in all those fins and propellers, why can’t any single Android handset outsell the iPhone? And why isn’t Android completely crushing iPhone in market share? I’ve said this before: iPhone comes from one manufacturer, and is on one provider, with one model. Android comes from multiple manufacturers, on multiple providers, with multiple models, and all it can do is best iPhone by 1 percentage point? And they’re doing 2-for-1 deals as well, and all they can do is squeeze out an extra percentage point in market share???

I know people with Android phones. I know people with iPhones. A very good friend of mine loves her Droid as much as I love my iPhone 4. We text a lot to each other, email, and on one very rare occasion even did a voice call. To each his or her own smartphone. But if Android is as good as you claim, it should be crushing iPhone and Apple into dust. Clearly, it’s not, and again, no single Android handset outsells the iPhone. Period. It takes the entire Android army to barely edge out iPhone market share. Meanwhile, Apple’s profit margins are the envy of every industry out there, and—in case you weren’t aware—it is poised to surpass Exxon as the most valuable company in the entire world.

The day any Android handset manufacturer can claim as much is the day Apple should worry. Until then, I think Apple pretty much knows what the heck it’s doing. And we’ll see about market share when iPhone comes to Verizon, which is Reason #1 for friends of mine who don’t choose iPhone.

mhikl

Ah to be 12 again, like jfbiii. So much more fun at that age, with future stretched out before him, than being a wilted old prom queen like Bosco in his tarty old ad(dress).

mhikl

I think I just heard Boso muttering, “Damn mrmgraphics and his logic picking on me. Will it never cease.”

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@mrmgraphics: Because people like choice? BTW, the manufacturers get their wholesale price on BOGOs, so you’re basically calling the carriers stupid for investing in those phones to get people on contract.

Android is outselling iPhone by 3:2 today. A reason it has taken a year to catch up to iPhone market share is that most elements that comprise the “market share” are on two year contracts. Much as Apple has yet to catch the market share of RIM.

Profit margins are laudable. I’m glad you all feel good about paying more is now customary in this market for your phones. Hell of a deal for Apple if it can maintain it. Trends say they won’t though.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

I think I just heard Boso muttering, ?Damn mrmgraphics and his logic picking on me. Will it never cease.?

You’re really a dim bulb, huh? You might not have noticed that mrmgraphics and I did not launch any personal flames against each other. We disagree. He proposes a thesis which I don’t believe will pan out (Verizon Unicorn making a difference) and we’ll probably disagree about that in 3 months when more numbers come out and Android has chomped up even more market share and sales share.

It’s really a shame to have been raised so that you see honest disagreement as picking on someone.  I feel sorry for you, mhikl, but at the same time, every time the Android numbers get comparatively better, it amuses me that you’ll be deeply hurt. I’m funny that way.

mhikl

Will be right back. Have to wipe tears from my eyes.

mhikl

Damn that Porn Tart is productive. Wish I could write crap and spiel as fast as he can. Maybe I’ll just make up stuff from Alice in Wonderland, like Bosco does and catch up. And I should add redundant predictions based on envy dreams and disillusioned wishes that noooo one cares about.

Monstrously dim, I’m afraid, and that mrmgraphics is the better man, at least I can admit it. He cares to educated and bases his arguments on truth. I on the other hand, know that in your case that is impossible. You will continue to cackle and make stuff up claiming honest disagreement when your feelings are hurt. Spew on bud. We need the chuckles. Must be terribly frustrating to realize so few revel in your anger and smut.

mrmwebmax

+

@Bosco: I don’t think carriers are stupid for their BOGO deals. I just feel that with the number of BOGOs and the number of manufacturers/carriers/models, again, if Android was so great, it should be crushing iPhone and Apple into dust. It is not. I grant you that it has the growth trajectory now, but we’ll see what happens if/when iPhone hits Verizon. I know it will be huge in my area (western PA), because Verizon positively dominates here.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

But then, shouldn’t Apple be crushing RIM into dust? We can both agree that for most applications and users, iPhone is a better smart phone than BlackBerry. Maybe if BBM is your thing, or you text incessantly and need the physical keyboard, BlackBerry has an advantage at this point. Maybe. But for the better part of 16 months, corporate connectivity has been there enough on iPhone for it to be “better” than BlackBerry.

Lack of Verizon iPhone is a symptom, not a cause. RIM is on Verizon, and yet their sales share and market share continue to slide. I am actually quite hopeful that the January 11 announcement is a Verizon iPhone, but my bet is on LTE iPad.

Ultimately, I’d like to help you guys make sense of Android domination and iPhone in a small niche. There’s a great interview that was just posted on Engadget with Matias Duarte, who was the UI guy for webOS and is now the UI czar for Android. Great insights into how Google thinks about the platform and how they see their partners innovating on top. And it’s great that designers can be passionate and detail focussed without being dictators.

“My goodness, the entire world doesn’t think exactly like I do.” -Matias Duarte

This is what I love about Android, and what has gone missing from Apple.

RonMacGuy

(Don’t get sucked in.  Don’t get sucked in.  Remember your New Year Resolution, Ron.  Don’t get sucked in.)

Wow, everyone just take a deep breath and relax.  Can’t we all just get along?  Congrats to Android.  Lots of nice discounts on all Android phones on all carriers makes them the winner.  And that’s OK.  Apple will continue to make the lion’s share of the profit in the smart phone industry.  Motorola and Samsung and all the other Droid phones will practically give their hardware away in order to compete.  Apple and Google make billions.  My stock continues to go up.  Everyone is happy.  That’s cool.  Let’s all just be nice to each other!!  It’s a big market!!  This market IS big enough for the two of us!!

grin

RonMacGuy

What really surprises me about Android is related to this statistic from a few weeks ago:

While the smartphone platform wars are relatively new, data bandied about during the late Summer showed that while 57% of Android apps were free, they accounted for 98.9% of Android downloads. Going back a year, Android developers were concerned about their ability to actually sell apps.

I already know that due to Android competition smart phone manufacturers like Motorola and Samsung are probably making slim margins.  Android is free.  And developers are making very little (or no) money on Android apps.  How is this not a long-term economic disaster?  What morons are spending hours creating a free OS?  Is Google paying them?  I really don’t understand this.

This whole thing really stinks like the PC industry.  Apple and high-end manufacturers like Sony make most of the profit, Microsoft does OK due to their huge market share, and Gateway, Dell, HP, etc. make tiny margins due to hardware competition.  I guess tiny margins on huge commodity product sales is good enough, but doesn’t help stock price.  As an investor, Google stock performance still stumps me.  No surprise on the other companies who’s stock is barely rising.

anonymous

Android is a terrific solution to the shared problem of creating web enabled smartphones. It also does some things better than the iPhone and iOS. Where I think people have very different perspectives is around what the Android eco-system is lacking and how important these areas will be. For example, the Android Marketplace is largely unable or unwilling to enforce copyrights and pay developers (outside a small number of countries). If you believe developers matter to the ongoing success of a mobile computing platform, Android has a big problem.

The next year will be an important test for Android in whether it can attract significant tablet software (7” screens that are essentially large cell phones don’t count).  Two other areas where Android has more work to do are as a gaming platform (compared to iPod Touch), and as a music player (compared to iTunes and iTMS).

Android may indeed come to dominate in low end smartphones, but the future of mobile computing is bigger than that.

Lee Dronick

Click on the troll’s post and report it as inappropriate.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

Wow, that guy’s tone wasn’t any more uncivil toward Apple fanatics than many of your comments directed at me, Ethan, and others who don’t buy the Apple line. I wish I could say I was surprised by the intolerance.

(I recently tagged one of rattyuk’s posts in which he told me to “eff off” except he spelled out the eff as “inappropriate” and it’s still in the comments. There is a strange double standard of civility and discourse here of late.)

RonMacGuy

Bosco, you are the pot calling the kettle black here. Truly amazing.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

@RonMacGuy: Notice that I’ve never told you to “eff off”. You might call it the Mubarak Rule… Be kind to those with whom you disagree when you are on top, because they will savage you given the opportunity. The negativity many exhibit toward Apple and some of its fans is directly related to how Apple and fans mistreated others when they didn’t have to. The shoe is moving to the other foot.

RonMacGuy

Bosco, I agree with you. No one should ever be told to “eff off” - but I also don’t think people should be called “12-year-olds” or “dim bulbs” because they disagree with someone’s position on something. But it goes both ways as well, and I can see reciprocating with insults when one is insulted. It is difficult to not retaliate, especially when they are mean to you, and I know a lot of people are mean to each other here. I am not sure if it all started with (as you say) Apple fans mistreating others when they didn’t have to, or if they were reciprocating due to insults being tossed their way first. In a way, it really doesn’t matter.

I really think a lot of it is people thinking Apple fans are elitists. I don’t think I am an elitist because I can afford Apple products and really enjoy using them. I also think a lot of people even own iPods but still call Apple fans elitists. There is this perception that if someone is sitting in Starbucks and has a Macbook open in front of them then they think they are better than everyone else. I think in most cases they are smiling because they are happy they are drinking Starbucks and are using a great laptop with a great OS. But hey, whatever. People should just state their positions here and try to avoid the insults. I’ve been just as guilty here as anyone else, and I am trying to be better.

RonMacGuy

The negativity many exhibit toward Apple and some of its fans is directly related to how Apple and fans mistreated others when they didn?t have to. The shoe is moving to the other foot.

Bosco, I only advise you to be careful here. Is the shoe moving to the other foot? Yes, in some ways. Maybe no in other ways. Even as an Apple fan I am fully capable of giving credit to android where it is due. But you are quickly becoming (with android) what you are accusing Apple fans of - “mistreating others when they didn’t have to.” Your over-the-top defense of android against comments regarding fragmentation or other criticisms (to the point of insulting our intelligence) can put you in the category of “elitist android fanboyism.”

I really don’t want to be saying, “The negativity many exhibit toward Android and some of its fans is directly related to how Google and fans mistreated others when they didn?t have to.” But hey, if the shoe fits…

grin

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