We wondered a few months ago is Android had reached a saturation point when it was running on 50% of the smartphones on the planet. We were… wrong. According to the IDC’s latest numbers, Android is now up to 59% of the worldwide smartphone market, with just under 90 million devices shipped in the first quarter of 2012. The nearest competitor is Apple, with 23% and 35.1 million iPhones.

The rest of the player are almost the definition of also-rans. Symbian and Blackberry are neck and neck at 6.8 and 6.4%, respectively. The combined share of Windows Phone 7 and the older Windows Mobile devices is just 2.2% – even unaffiliated Linux is beating them. Every smartphone software platform aside from Android and iOS is showing dramatic losses since last year.

When it comes to individual manufacturers, Samsung rules the Android roost with 45.4% of shipments. (This jives with Gartner’s similar report.) Incidentally, that gives them 26.8% of the total smartphone market, edging out Apple with 40.8 million Android smartphones shipped in the first quarter of this year.  Other Android manufacturers were not articulated in the report. Year over year Android gained 22.9% of the market, growing considerably faster than Apple in the same time period. Don’t let it go to your heads, Android fans – Google still has a long way to go in the tablet market.


  1. Android gained as much share of sales in one year as iPhone has achieved lifetime – with the market growing by half as well. That is simply astounding. This can’t happen again though – there’s only 16 percent of the market left to scoop up.

    • That’s what happens when you absolutely flood the market with Android devices. Marketshare doesn’t really mean anything anymore. Look at the Mac itself.. hovering just below 10%, but still growing. That hasn’t stopped Apple.


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