Google’s mobile operating system Android has captured “almost” 50% of the global smartphone market, according to a report by market research firm Canalys.
Google acquired Android in 2005 and launched on phones in 2008, is used by almost all the major phone makers including HTC, LG, Motorola and Samsung. It was the number one platform in 35 of the 56 countries Canalys tracks, resulting in a market share of 48%, the research firm said.
The platform has been making big strides during the past year, overtaking Symbian in Q4 of 2010 to become the top smartphone platform, representing a 32.9% market share at that time.
Smartphone adoption continues to grow rapidly across the world, reaching a total of 107.7 million units shipped in Q2 of 2011, a 73% year-on-year growth. There were particularly strong performances from Android devices in APAC countries, such as South Korea, where Android holds an 85% platform share, and Taiwan, where it has 71%.”
Apple also fared well, with iOS overtaking Nokia’s Symbian platform to rise from third to second place. A total of 20.3 million iPhones were shipped and Apple raked in a market share of 19%. Apple also became the world’s leading individual smartphone vendor, stripping Nokia of its long-held leadership position.
Samsung also moved ahead of Nokia, with its flagship Galaxy S II product performing well, but its overall performance was underwhelming, considering the opportunities offered by the upheaval at Nokia. Samsung is the largest Android device vendor and the number two vendor overall in the market with shipments of its own-branded devices at 17.0 million units.
However, Nokia is still holding strong at number one in emerging markets, including Brazil, Russia, India and China.