back to article Android slurps market share from Apple, RIM, Microsoft

Android's share of the US smartphone market surged 4 per centage points between February and May, according to research outfit comScore, putting Google on the verge of overtaking Microsoft for the number three spot behind RIM BlackBerry and Apple. comScore's latest numbers give Android 13 per cent of the smartphone market, …

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  1. Anomalous Cowturd
    Boffin

    My nine year old Nokia 6310i

    Lets me talk to people from nearly anywhere.

    In either hand, or my pocket, or my car kit, or tethered to my PDA or laptop.

    Isn't technology wonderful.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Word

      The best phone ever.

      /everything

    2. Anton Ivanov
      Flame

      You are lucky to have one of the 3 best phones ever made

      The 6310i still costs 60£ for second hand refurbished which is more than a lot of new phones. It does not break, it does not crash and it just works. That however is not what the manufacturers want nowdays. They want you to change it like a fashion accessory every 12-24 months so things are usually build to break one way or another.

      1. John Robson Silver badge

        I got othello to crash, sort of....

        On my 6310i I managed to get two moves in othello, before the phone moved - so I ended up winning with a bunch of 6 blobs in the middle...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      Nokia 6310i

      I'm not the only one then!

    4. Mitch Kent
      Thumb Up

      Backup

      This has always been my backup phone - with larger battery. It's what I take when I go out and don't want to take my snazzy smartphone with me, festivals and the like. I remember when the blue screen was the nuts.

      Wouldn't trade it for my Desire though. Best phone I've ever used, just a shame it's with Orange...

  2. Wrenchy
    Linux

    History Repeating Itself

    >>At this rate, Android will shame Steve Jobs and Apple in much the same way the Cupertino cult was shamed by Microsoft Windows two decades ago.

    Yup, that just about sums it up!

    The Little Green Robots are coming!

    That's a shame. If Stevie-Boy wasn't such a douch-bag, locking the platform down like Fort Knox, the iPhone could have been really magical.

    But, like all idiots, they don't learn from their mistakes... Two decades ago.

    1. Lou Gosselin

      Re:History Repeating Itself

      It would be a very nice piece of equipment, if only apple respected user's right to choose what they can do/run on their mobile devices.

      It's not surprising to see apple lock the devices down, it enables apple to cash in on the walled garden.

      However that comes at a deep cost of owners loosing their freedom. It's somewhat disappointing to see so many people giving up their rights to some trendy corporation. Some may think I'm blowing this out of proportion, but it's indisputable that closed gardens kill innovation, discourage competition, remove choice, all these effects combined will ultimately harm consumers.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Gulfie
        Thumb Up

        +1 to that

        I bought a 3G knowing what I was taking on, and I wasn't bothered about it. When I did get bothered (iAd for starters, plus a long history of pulling useful apps from the store) I switched to Android.

        1. Giles Jones Gold badge

          Google

          Google have used their "kill switch" to remotely remove applications. Apple haven't.

          Google adverts are pretty evil, I've seen one for Scientology on my phone. Not the sort of cultist evil rubbish they should be pushing to people (especially when kids can see these adverts).

        2. Anonymous Coward
          WTF?

          @Gulfie

          Well, since iAds just went live last week and you don't have to install apps that integrate the ads, I find that argument completely disingenous, especially given that Android is a Google thing and Google owns AdMob and servers their own ads in every Google search you do.

          As for apps being pulled, can I ask if you were actually affected by any, and if so, how? They don't get pulled from your device, just from the store.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        FAIL

        @Lou

        "Some may think I'm blowing this out of proportion,"

        Yep, I'll be the first to raise my hand to that one - way out of proportion. Since when do you get to judge whether a product is appropriate for *me*? Respecting a user's right? What a bunch of sheit.

        "but it's indisputable that closed gardens kill innovation, discourage competition, remove choice, all these effects combined will ultimately harm consumers."

        Indisputable? I call hyperbole. It's not indisputable.

        The reg article fails on one big point - it doesn't include the recent iPhone 4 launch numbers. Hmmm. Now that would have made the tone of the article and the argument that Android is winning a bit weak, or completely false? Nice one.

        But, the article is a good sop to all the Fandroids out there and anyone else that thinks that quantity means something. I'm happy if Apple only sell one iPhone 4, as long as it's to me. If that makes you giggle and think, then we'd really be the winners, I'd have to laugh back and say, "what did you win?"

      4. Avatar of They
        Thumb Down

        Who are you talking about?

        ...and this differs from Google's Android how exactly?

        They can remotely remove apps, see what your doing, control the development stream, own the brand, lock it down for owner only innovation. That is Apple, no wait google... erm.

        Don't go shouting about one walled garden being pants when the other is still there, just not run by people who shout out about how people should shut up and.... do what they say, that don't expect you to care about your privacy because you are safe in their world. oh wait, schmidt does that. No Jobs. Who am I talking about again?

        I can't see how android and apple are different. Give it a year, neither will you.

        1. Rex Alfie Lee
          Linux

          What did I win???

          Hmm, hate to be obvious but a better phone, a more modifiable phone, with apps running at the same time rather than one after the other, just I guess a better phone.

          In case you didn't get that, I got a better phone.

    2. Jason Hall

      Oooo apple are sooo ebil

      "That's a shame. If Stevie-Boy wasn't such a douch-bag, locking the platform down like Fort Knox, the iPhone could have been really magical."

      The iPhone platform HAS been really magical. Do you think android, or the devices it runs on, would be anywhere near as accomplished if it had never existed?

      So as much as you hate it, please remember it's down to this device that we can all choose from so many brilliant handsets.

      Oh yeah, it's not locked down because Steve is a douche-bag - it's so that he can make huge amounts of cash from his platform/investment/shiny bauble. You know - it's what businesses are all about? Sounds logical to me.

      "But, like all idiots, they don't learn from their mistakes... Two decades ago."

      Apple have set themselves up with a shiny phone that has all sorts of bells and whistles, that has captured the minds of people who want something more from their phones.

      They have made it more expensive than most so that it has a prestige value too.

      Now while the best android handsets are possibly better than the iphone, they are in a different market. True geeks might love the android handsets more for all sorts of reasons more than the iphone. But the average customer just wants the bells and whistles of the iphone for a cheaper price. That's how markets work.

      I'm sure apple would want ALL the market, but that was never going to happen was it?

      There is always going to be some handset maker that could undercut their prices, so why pander down to the cheapest customers. Keep themselves as a high-status model and make shed-loads of cash.

      We all get to choose from lots more handsets, by loads of manufacturers. We all win. I don't know why people are so bitter about it? Maybe it's just jealousy?

      1. The Original Steve
        FAIL

        @Jason Hall

        There is nothing "magical" about any technical device - in particular a handset that cost twice as much as anything else yet had half the capabilities at launch.

        Yeah, the iPhone gave manufacturer's a good kick up the arse about the GUI on handsets and overall end-user experience.

        Everything else is a HUGE fail.

    3. The BigYin

      Fort Knox

      "If Stevie-Boy wasn't such a douch-bag, locking the platform down like Fort Knox, the iPhone could have been really magical."

      On that point I would disagree. The one thing Apple does fairly well is design and integration (just look at the power adaptors!) and having a "free for all" without strict controls would have lead to a shattering of the iPhone's seamless ease-of-use. Compare that to the shit people have to go through with the Droid; phone with different resolutions, screen sizes and features. The devs must go mental.

      You can see a similar thing in the Linux world where Canonical have gone to great lengths to integrate the various factions into Ubuntu. Like it or love it, control gives you...well...control!

      Perhaps Apple should have made it possible to install other things (with warnings etc) but then Apple do not have a monopoly, other smartphones are available. Don't like it? Don't buy it. Yes, it is that simple.

      Lots of lintards don't like Ubuntu as it is "dumbed down", "configured to shit" etc. Well, it's not the only game in town. Don't like it, don't install. Go use Arch, Slack or BSD you frickin' prima donnas.

      Thing is, iPhone and Ubuntu get traction because to a great degree "they just work" and that is IMHO a good thing. Once people get some savvy, they'll move on (or hack the hell out of what they currently use).

      1. Mark Boothroyd
        WTF?

        @The BigYin

        Quote: "Compare that to the shit people have to go through with the Droid; phone with different resolutions, screen sizes and features.".

        How is this any different from iPhones? iPhone 4 has a higher res screen, a different processor and different features, and the iPad is even worse.

        Plus it's Android, not Driod, Droid is a specific handset from Motorola, not a general term for Android devices.

    4. Giles Jones Gold badge

      Form factor

      I know a few people who won't buy an iPhone as they like hardware keys.

      Android phones are in numerous form factors, colours and styles. Although obviously none of them are as pleasing to the eye as the iPhone.

      Android isn't locked down that much, but it's still under the control of Google. The openness is it's USP, the OS itself from what I've seen is pretty average. Like a Linux desktop is.

      Microsoft's next platform will be as locked down as the iPhone.

  3. Matthew 4
    Thumb Down

    Does M$ even care?

    I get the feeling microsoft can't really be bothered with mobiles. They have had longer than anyone to perfect a mobile OS, but 6.1 is hardly any better then CE was.

  4. Dana W
    FAIL

    We forget someting?

    This 1% slump for Apple only counts if you use the pre iPhone 4 sales stats? Apple's biggest launch ever?

    Seriously? Can you say massage the numbers? Whether you love Apple or hate it, this is just bad math.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Linux

      @ Dana W : Short memory?

      Ah yes, the iPhone 4. A device so epically shit that many of the biggest Apple fantards, like yourself, aren't even touching it with a 40ft pole. (Which, funnily enough, is one of the few ways you *can* actually touch it and still get a signal.)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        FAIL

        @AC re: short memory

        "The biggest Apple fantards"

        What a ridiculously stupid and offensive statement designed to do nothing in progressing discussion but everything into attacking and making yourself feel utterly superior. Stupid Fandroid! ;-)

        I'm not sure what the biggest fan would be, but there are already millions and millions of people who have bought and the nicest phone (the white one) isn't even available and they still launching around the world.

        However, let's assume the biggest Apple fans are staying away - that means the millions and millions of people purchasing the phone are new users. Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

        1. RegisterThis
          FAIL

          @AC 12:43 :-)

          "However, let's assume the biggest Apple fans are staying away - that means the millions and millions of people purchasing the phone are new users. Put that in your pipe and smoke it!"

          Actually, I think the figures released indicated that 75% of iPhone 4 purchases were upgrades of existing iPhone users. Not quite the 'millions of new custoemrs' ;-)

          http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/10/06/25/apples_recurring_revenue_stream_77_of_iphone_4_sales_were_upgrades.html

    2. Paul M 1

      Maybe

      But I would be very surprised if more than a tiny percentage of early iPhone 4 buyers are new customers rather than people upgrading older models.

      Like me! Although I have to admit to some hesitation - Android really is looking better and better. If I ultimately decide to go for an iPhone 4 this time I'm almost certain my next phone will be an Android.

    3. RainForestGuppy

      But

      1 million fanbois upgrading their existing phones does not increase market share.

      The growth in Android market share is because people are ditching their existing phones for something that gives them the flexibility to do what they want with it.

      Don't get me wrong Apple products are very good, but the business model of keeping everything locked down failed before in the PC market and will most likely fail again in the mobile market.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      Did you not read something?

      I think you need to go back and re-read the article. It clearly states that the figures don't include the iPhone 4 as it went on sale in June whereas the report is only to May.

      Seriously? Can you say adult reading classes? Whether you love Apple or hate it, this is just an epic fail.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        FAIL

        @AC re: not read something

        Ironic that you throw a childish insult out there regarding adult reading classes. Epic fail YOU!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          WTF?

          @AC 12:44 @AC re: not read something

          How so? Where is the fail in that comment?

  5. Eddy Ito Silver badge

    Meh

    Perhaps the reason for the slight iPhone dip is because folks were holding off for 4 to debut. It would be interesting to know if the iPad is actually cutting iPhone sales. After all, if you have an iPad why would you need anything other than a basic mobile? It's a bit like taking a step back where folks had PDAs and mobiles. That said, this is clearly nothing but good news for Android, now if only the GOOG wasn't such a bunch of wanks.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Android is awful

    I had the misfortune of playing with an Android phone for a day recently. Nowhere near the quality of an iPhone, in fact Windows mobile is better.

  7. Jean-Paul

    Hardly surprising is it?

    Again great non news...This is hardly surprising news, there are so many different Android OS based phones on the market from very cheap to not so cheap....Against two models from apple and lots of different models and big corporate contract from RIM...

    With it being so cheap to implement and license for phone manufacturers there is no doubt that it will be the mass product out there....Just like the F150 truck has been in the US...Did that make it the vehicle to drive or use....Well you tell me...

  8. Mike Bell

    @History

    I'm being Devil's Advocate here, but a real problem in allowing users free reign with what they can install on their phones is the potential for users to f**k things up big time.

    For example, on Android you are perfectly at liberty to download any of a number of free task killer applications. Then, if you get unlucky, you can kiss goodbye to your battery performance and scratch your head / call support because your alarm clock has mysteriously stopped working.

    That kind of thing is clearly inconvenient for the lay user as well as the handset manufacturer.

  9. Lloyd
    Stop

    Between February and May this year

    Hmmm, what happened then exactly? Oh yes, the Desire and the Nexus One, both of which are older but still more advanced than the iPhone 4. Still, I agree with everyone else, my main frustration with my 3G was that it was locked down tighter than a gnats chuff, the fact that Apple wouldn't even let you use it as a mass storage device made it next to worthless.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    80s again

    It's the 80s again. Apple brings out brilliant product but Steve Jobs won't license the software to anyone and wants to keep prices at early-adopter levels even as the market expands rapidly. So the bulk of the market ends up swinging for a cheaper, maybe not-as-good, but freely available and (relatively) open alternative and every other manufacturer goes with that because they cannot have Steve's OS.

    Apple could have licensed their Mac OS in the 80s and they'd have had 90% of the OS market and still retained 5% of the total PC market from the clowns who fall over themselves to pay double for anything in brushed aluminium or see-through plastic. Microsoft would never have been anything other than an average software house knocking out Mac applications.

    Fast forward to the 2000s and Steve has come up with a second market-defining product. But yet again his total control-freakery and refusal to license the OS to a wider market is going to end up seeing iPhone OS relegated to a niche 5% just like Mac OS was.

    Steve Jobs is a genius and a total idiot all at the same time.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      WTF?

      @cap'n - hey, it's NOT the 80s again

      Hardware vs. software.

      Why in the world would Apple license their software - you do realise that it's only there to make their hardware work? They are a hardware company, not a software company. They will *never* go after an OS market, never. They are hardware, and that is all they will ever be.

      The 80s was a very different time when the computer was new (and expensive) and MS won in business, which was then parlayed into commodity in the home. Today is very different and if you think their success has anything to do with licensing their OS, you misunderstand their business. Their aim isn't to be a me-too product company - there are myriad companies like that already who all compete on one thing - price. Compete on usability and form and when the thing just works, you can charge a premium, keep your margins high and be a successful company in that regard.

      Stop trying to turn them into a Micro$haft!

      1. The Original Steve
        Stop

        @AC

        Your telling me Apple are a hardware company?

        With the iPhone?

        The 2007 handset with a 2MP camera, shit non-removable battery, no actual hardware buttons, 2.5G only and cost a fortune?

        With the Mac?

        Bog standard Intel x86 components in a custom chassis?

        Give over - Apple are a MARKETING company - and are very good at it - but a hardware company they are not.

    2. chr0m4t1c

      Erm

      Apple did license their OS and all that happened was that a bunch of cheaper clone machines cannibalized sales from Apple themselves without increasing market share and Apple almost went under.

      Of course the PC market and the mobile market are largely different playing fields, but the early versions of Android looked like "slightly better" Windows Mobile or Symbian S60, so we *may* have Apple to thank for what we have now.

      Mind you, the Palm Pre would have been a huge leap forwards if the original iPhone hadn't already stolen some of the thunder, so maybe that would have been our benchmark product for everyone to bash in the forums.

      1. Daniel B.
        Thumb Down

        Wasn't because of licensing

        Apple suffered because they did the licensing thing too late. If they had done the move in the 80's, most of us would have been running System 7.1 by the time win95 came ... and win95 would've been dumped like the piece of trash it was.

        However, by the time Apple started the licensing program, MS had already taken over the PC market. Most of the PC competitors (Amiga, RISC OS and such) were going poof, or had already been relegated to a niche market. By then, those interested in a cheap Mac were the remaining Mac users, not new users.

  11. spuddy
    Thumb Down

    big leap

    Its a mistake to think that the mobile space is the same as the desktop space. There's a way to go before corporates accept Android in the way they do MS, RiM and Apple unless it gets its fragmentation of OS and devices under control.

    MS, RiM and Android are all in the same space, the phone market. Android is buzzing right now because they've leapt in to fill the void whilst MS gets round to sorting out Phone Series 7 (e.g. most HTC phone were MS now Android) but when they do the U.I. and features battle between MS and Android will commence.

    Apple is in a separate space the portable computer market (iPhone users barely use the phone, which is sort of lucky!).

  12. Pabs
    Thumb Up

    Bye Apple....

    My next phone will not be an Apple device....nuff said...POS device!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      WTF?

      @Pabs

      What, you think you're such a celebrity that your product decisions will affect anyone here? Or are you just trying to claim superiority?

  13. Jamie Kitson

    Why all these words?

    Where's the nice graph?

  14. Len Mackin
    Thumb Up

    I love my Android Desire

    Compared to my previous winmobile phone (laggy and buggy) my current phone is excellent. I have already got the latest 2.2 firmware on it and a couple of development roms so I can play around with what the nerds are producing, can change between roms in a matter of a minute.

    Winblows is out the door forever and I wouldn't touch Apple as they are two expensive and locked down.

  15. Magnus_Pym

    Inflamatory?

    Apple 'Shamed' by Windows etc.

    Then I saw it was another Cade Metz peice. Going for the forum record by any chance?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    @Dana W

    Yes, but from what I can see the vast majority of iPhone 4 sales were to existing iPhone users, so it might have sold a huge number of handsets, but it probably won't change Apple's market share much.

  17. mhenriday
    Thumb Up

    «What's more, Android phones work just fine when held with your left hand.»

    And is it not said, «... let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth» ? No wonder Steve Jobs is against it !...

    Henri

  18. AnonymousDareDevil

    Different objectives

    Google wants android to be the #1 mobile OS, Apple wants iPhone to be the Mercedes of mobiles... well, Apple wants to BE the Mercedes of consumer electronics.

    In the near future, Apple may find out that Google has the largest media distribution market (that's what smartphones and tablets are for, really) or maybe Google will realize that Apple's market is where all the big spenders are.

    In the mean time, we the consumers benefit from healthy competition.

  19. lucmars

    Android isn't a phone

    One can say that an iPhone or a Blackberry is a phone, but not about Android. So, on what kind of phone does Android get its market share ?

    1. vic 4
      FAIL

      No but it is a smart phone platform

      Which is the point being discussed, you did read the report the article was about befor e you posted?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      WTF?

      @AC

      So what? Does more mean better?

      I'd still think that the iPhone is the greatest phone I've ever owned if they sold just 1 (to me).

      This insane competition amongst people on this forum is pointless. You aren't better because of your phone and the phone isn't better because it sells more.

      Oh, one more thing - Android is OS, Apple is hardware.

    3. RegisterThis
      Thumb Up

      Spot on ... just wish more people would realise it ...

      The big difference, is that in this market place, the investors, press ... punters ... have decided that EVERYBODY should try and be a Mercedes which is harmful in some ways IMHO! Competition where everybody is trying to reinvent themselves as BMW because the markets says that you are 'nothing' otherwise is not ultimately good for innovation - where is the offering for pragmatic day-to-day business? Suddenly it is form over function. If the market recognised this segmentation it would be even better for us all.

  20. DEAD4EVER
    Go

    android market share

    nice one lets see a different os for a change as im sick to death of hearing apple this apple that lets hope that android beats apple and claims the top spot. alot of nice phones are on android like the evo 4g which isnt for uk release and the motorola droid x i like thease big phones. as for the iphone well it sucks sucks sucks bad design resulting in antenna signal dropping how pathetic and steve jobs says to fix that either hold it differently or buy a case that is the most lamest reply ever from a owner. i most certainly wont be buying a iphone and been sucked in buy jobs and his locked up piece of crap the icrappy or ishite.

  21. justkyle
    FAIL

    Android, OK for personal use, but not for business!

    I really like the idea of the Android operating system, but am fearful with so much Google-ness being behind it.

    That being said, Google seems to excel at targeting personal use kind of stuff. Business critical stuff? ehh, not so much.

    To fully lock down and tie an Android phone to Exchange, you have to pay a separate third party! WTF? This certainly doesn't have to be done on Windows phone devices, or even the iPhone devices.

    So, all in all, no big surprise. Android phones are cheaper than Apple phones (usually), and, despite what some people think, over here on our side of the pond cell phones are a personal consumer driven business more-so than a business customer driven business.

    Don't even get me started about Palm WebOS. They came too late to the party, and got bought out by HP.

  22. Jesse Casman

    No graphs?

    What, you guys against graphs? Great piece, great data, but I need to see it visually.

  23. Bryan W
    Jobs Horns

    Deja Vu?

    "Android will shame Steve Jobs and Apple in much the same way the Cupertino cult was shamed by Microsoft Windows two decades ago." Amen

    If not android, any other system that isn't micromanaged and squeezed for every available cent by a money hungry corporation fabricating and selling image with their devices.. I do not understand how Apple has failed to learn the lessons from history with Macs vs PC.. They're doing the same thing they did in the 80s, except it Google instead of Microsoft who holds Apple's death card. Sure this proprietary approach of Apple's has gotten them more money in the short term, but they have already sealed their fate in the war. And only morons or people too young to remember didn't see this coming.

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