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A quarter of all smartphones sold are now Android

by Scott Bicheno on 10 November 2010, 10:04

Tags: Google (NASDAQ:GOOG), Gartner (NYSE:IT)

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The scary stats for Android just keep coming. Today, market researcher Gartner released its global mobile phone sales figures and, while they make great reading for the whole phone industry, they're also ominous for every company whose name doesn't begin with ‘G'.

That's because Google's Android OS shipped 14-times as many units in Q3 2010 compared to the same period a year ago. In so doing it has increased its worldwide smartphone market share from 3.5 percent to 25.5 percent. That means a quarter of all smartphones shipped in Q3 were Android and, with that rate of growth, a market share of 50 percent doesn't seem too far away.

"This quarter saw Apple and Android drive record smartphone sales," said Carolina Milanesi, research VP at Gartner.  "Apple's share of the smartphone market surpassed Research In Motion (RIM) in North America to put it second behind Android while Android volumes also grew rapidly making it the No. 2 operating system worldwide."

Here's the table. Note Nokia is still managing to grow Symbian sales substantially, but due to the Android tsunami it still lost a big chunk of smartphone market share. Even Apple, which almost doubled the sale of iOS phones year-on-year, lost a small amount of market share to Android. Meanwhile the challenge faced by RIM and Microsoft is clear. Lastly, note the total smartphone market almost doubled.

 

Worldwide Smartphone Sales to End Users by Operating System in 3Q10 (Thousands of Units)

Company

3Q10

 Units

3Q10 Market Share (%)

3Q09

 Units

3Q09 Market Share (%)

Symbian

29,480.1

36.6

18,314.8

44.6

Android

20,500.0

25.5

1,424.5

3.5

iOS

13,484.4

16.7

7,040.4

17.1

Research In Motion

11,908.3

14.8

8,522.7

20.7

Microsoft Windows Mobile

2,247.9

2.8

3,259.9

7.9

Linux

1,697.1

2.1

1,918.5

4.7

Other OS

1,214.8

1.5

612.5

1.5

Total

80,532.6

100.0

41,093.3

100.0

Source: Gartner (November 2010)