Android reigns supreme in US

April 5, 2012

Android reigns supreme in USIf you’re an American smartphone owner, you probably have an Android handset. Google’s system has — by one estimate at least– just broken the 50 percent market share barrier in the United States, mirroring its existing success worldwide.

According to figures from Comscore, 50.1 percent of smartphone subscribers in the US were running Android in February, up from 46.9 percent in November and 43 percent in February 2011.

These are figures for all users, rather than some market share statistics that only cover sales of new handsets. It’s important to note the figures come from a survey of users, rather than being based on actual measured use via website stats, or from actual sales figures. For this reason the trends identified by the survey are much more reliable than the precise figures.

Despite the supposed war (which is as much in the courtrooms as in stores), the Android success hasn’t come at the expense of Apple. iPhone user is up from around 25 percent last year to 30.2 percent.

The real losers are Research in Motion on 13.4 percent and Microsoft on 3.9 percent, both on the decline, while fifth place sees Symbian unchanged on 1.5 percent. For Microsoft to be losing share even after Windows Phone 7 is terrible news, while RIM has already decided to get out of the consumer market altogether and return to its business roots.

When it comes to individual manufacturers, Apple is in third place, behind Samsung and LG but ahead of Motorola and HTC. Those figures cover all cellphones, not just smartphones.

The ongoing trend towards users switching to smartphones has logically enough caused an increase in use of every phone feature covered in the survey, with just under half of all phone owners (including those without access to app stores) having downloaded an app during February.

Perhaps the biggest surprise though is that while texting is on the increase, more than one in four people with a cellphone claimed not to have sent a text message during the month.

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