Is it any surprise to anyone that Android is very quickly dominating the U.S. smartphone market? The Apple iPhone is just one phone on one carrier, so it’s not shocking that it’s being toppled by Android. And RIM, well, despite having several handsets on every major carrier (and some smaller ones, too), just isn’t looking so hot – especially after the OK-but-not-great Torch announcement yesterday. With more smartphones and tablets adopting Google’s mobile operating system, there is no escaping the fact that Android will be very firmly at the top in just a few months.
A third of all smartphones sold in the spring were Android handsets, largely thanks to the still popular Motorola Droid, the HTC Droid Incredible and the HTC EVO 4G. There were others doing relatively well, like the Hero and Eris, but it was the big, powerful and feature packed Android handsets really leading the way.
Much of Android’s success, and the BlackBerry’s failure, could be directly attributed to Verizon. The one provider is responsible for a third of all smartphone sales in the country and is known to artificially pump the number of devices sold through its Buy One, Get One (BOGO) promos; the deal gives a similar or lesser device for free, including Android and BlackBerry devices.
With the Droid X quickly selling out and the much anticipated Motorola Droid 2 launching very soon, Google is poised for dominance as RIM’s share continues to drop with many users wanting to jump ship for iPhone or Android. Meanwhile, Apple is doing quite well with huge iPhone sales, but the fact that it is vastly outnumbered by Android handsets in the U.S. makes it difficult to be number one.
However, Electronista says, “Google’s ability to hold on to the American smartphone market isn’t as certain. The spring quarter only saw a few days of iPhone 4 sales and didn’t reflect the sustained extra demand during the summer.” Perhaps this is true, but it’s hard to imagine given the HTC, Motorola, LG and Samsung handsets being cranked out with Google’s platform. Time will tell, but it looks like a bright future for Android either way, especially with version 3.0 coming this holiday season.