Google’s Android Outsells iPhone, Threatens BlackBerry

Date:   Thursday , June 03, 2010

Google displaced iPhone maker Apple to become the second most popular provider of Smartphone software in the United States during the first quarter, the latest sign of the increasing competition in the fast-growing mobile market. In fact, the devices with the Google operating system have left Apple’s iPhone behind in the first quarterly sales.

Smartphones, which allow consumers to surf the Web, send email, and run specialized applications on wide, color screens are increasingly replacing no-frills cell phones for many US consumers. The devices have become a prime battleground for a variety of tech companies seeking to ensure a good position in the evolving market.

A US consumer market research company report says that Google’s Android operating system has shaken up the mobile phone market, moving past Apple to take the number two position among Smartphone operating systems with a share of 28 percent, just behind BlackBerry’s 36 percent. Apple’s share is 21 percent.

Android’s growth has been fuelled by aggressive marketing by the carrier Verizon Wireless. But Google’s operating system still has a long way to go as it controls only 9 percent of the US market as against iPhone’s 25.4 percent.

Hewlett-Packard is planning to pay $1.2 billion to acquire Palm Inc, which sells two Smartphone models based on its WebOS operating system. Microsoft Corp, whose Windows operating system is used in the majority of the world’s PCs, unveiled a pair of smartphones last month and recently launched a revamped version of its mobile operating system.

So far Apple has sold more than 51 million iPhones since it launched the device to a wide acclaim in 2007, and the company says that more than 200,000 apps are available for the phone.

At present, the US smartphone market is controlled by four carriers - AT&T (32 percent), Verizon Wireless (30 percent), T-Mobile (17 percent), and Sprint (15 percent).