Android closing in on Symbian for top mobile OSAlex Wagner - Deputy Managing Editor, News Desk
You say you've got an insatiable appetite for reports about mobile OS market share? That's great, because today research firm Gartner released their worldwide Q3 2010 numbers. Symbian is, unsurprisingly, still wearing the gold medal with a market share of 36.6 percent, although that number is eight percent lower than the previous year. Android had a rather large surge in Q3 2010 compared to Q3 2009, jumping to 25.5 percent of the market and second place in the mobile OS race. Holding steady in third place is iOS, which only dropped 0.4 percent compared to Q3 2009, while RIM finished in fourth with 14.9 percent, a drop of nearly six percent from last year. Finally, Windows Mobile, Linux, and the "Other" category are bringing up the rear, with less than three percent each.
Pop quiz time! Which smartphone manufacturer do you think is the biggest in the world? If you guess Nokia, you'd be right on, my friend, as the Finnish company controls 28.2 percent of the market, although that represents a decrease of 8.5 percent from last year. Samsung is doing pretty well for itself, too, with 17.2 percent market share, although their share also dropped. LG is just about the only other manufacturer with a sizable chunk of the market, sitting at 6.6 percent. The rest of the companies have around two or three percent shares. Some notable finishes: Apple with 3.2 percent, RIM with 2.9 percent, Motorola with 2.1 percent, and HTC with 1.6 percent.
Gartner predicted that Android would become the No. 2 mobile OS in the world by the time 2010 is up, and it looks like that prediction was dead-on. While Android obviously isn't going to jump another 20 percent in the next quarter, I wouldn't be surprised to see it gain even more ground on Symbian in the next few reports. Interestingly, Gartner notes that Android-powered phones made up around 75 or 80 percent of Verizon's smartphone sales in the third quarter. That's not terribly shocking considering that Big Red has around nine or 10 Android phones on their roster, but I'm curious what that number will look like when the iPhone finally arrives on VZW. Any guesses?