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Google Businesses Cellphones Iphone Operating Systems Wireless Networking Apple

Android Sales Surpass iPhone Sales 668

Posted by Soulskill
from the battle-for-second-place dept.
gollum123 writes with this excerpt from VentureBeat: "Smartphones based on Google's Android mobile operating system outsold Apple's iPhone in the US during the first quarter of 2010, according to a report by research firm The NPD Group. The data places Android, with 28 percent of the smartphone market [last quarter], in second place behind RIM's Blackberry smartphone market share of 36 percent. Apple now sits in third place with 21 percent. NPD points to a Verizon buy-one-get-one-free promotion for all of its smartphones as a major factor in the first-quarter numbers. Verizon saw strong sales for the Motorola Droid and Droid Eris Android phones, as well as the Blackberry Curve, thanks to its promotional offer. Verizon launched a $100 million marketing campaign for the Droid when it hit the market in November 2009, which likely contributed to strong sales in the first quarter as well." Preston Gralla notes that it's not all bad news for Apple; this report could help their case in upcoming antitrust discussions.
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Android Sales Surpass iPhone Sales

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  • Good news! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Bearwhale (1808530) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:06PM (#32160888)
    I for one have an iPhone and I cannot tell you how much I wish it were an Android. Hopefully, the 'Droid can come out with a version that beats Apple's 4G series that are approaching the market.
  • Cool, but .. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Weezul (52464) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:08PM (#32160934)

    Android phones are not as open as Maemo/MeeGo phones. Andoird could have been way cooler if Google have picked up Maemo instead of starting from scratch using Java. That said, I don't mind that all the mobile games targeted for Android should eventually run on Maemo.

    (Random text inserted at the end of the message to allow mouse chicks on text in Shashdot's edit window on Safari)

  • Re:surprising? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Alien1024 (1742918) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:11PM (#32160974)
    I don't live in the US. Isn't it perfectly possible to buy an unlocked iPhone there and use it on whatever network the phone supports...? Wow
  • Re:surprising? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by C_Kode (102755) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:17PM (#32161056) Journal

    Why sarcasm? Apple put themselves in this position. Just like Google put themselves in the same position with the Nexus One. Of course, Google didn' lock themselves out of other Smartphone markets the way Apple did. Greed can make you a lot of money, but it can also hamper you in the worst possible way.

    Apple wants complete and utter vendor lock-in. If it wants that, it will remain forever only a small niche market. Even if it produces great products.

  • Re:surprising? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bkaul01 (619795) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:18PM (#32161090)
    I dunno ... I have AT&T and I generally still have 1-2 bars of signal in places where my friends with iPhones drop coverage. I think it's more a sucky antenna issue than a bad coverage issue, at least around here.
  • Re:Apple (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:19PM (#32161110)

    Option 3 would be the Nokia N900 running Maemo (or its successor), I would think Thought about it myself, but hate the keyboard and went with a rooted HTC Desire.

  • by nilbog (732352) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:23PM (#32161174) Homepage Journal

    Apple is committed to making the same mistakes it made in the 80's. It amazes me how they think they can break the natural laws of the market and make their business model work. In five years the iPhone's market share will pale in comparison to Android and it will be for the sole reason that Apple cares more about its vision than its customers. Android is the Windows of the mobile world.

  • by DdJ (10790) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:24PM (#32161180) Homepage Journal

    There's been anecdotal evidence that there isn't as much money to be made writing Android apps as there is to be made writing iPhone apps.

    One theory has gone "that's because the user base isn't there yet; when the users show up, the developers will come".

    Well. It looks like the users are showing up in numbers that are becoming difficult to ignore. So now it's time to keep a close eye on app developers, and see what happens! Is Android more like the XBox 360 (where a lot of third-party developers make a lot of money), or more like the Wii (where almost nobody but Nintendo ends up making much money)?

    It's all going to be very interesting to watch. Yay competition!

  • Re:Apple (Score:3, Interesting)

    by BasilBrush (643681) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:32PM (#32161306)

    hardly anybody has a clue what need in their life (beyond "oooh shiny!") the iPad might sate.

    1 million sales is the first month is far from "hardly anybody". Particularly as that figure is limited by supply - they had to delay launch in non-US territories because US sales were higher than predicted.

  • Re:Good news! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by amicusNYCL (1538833) on Monday May 10, 2010 @04:39PM (#32161400)

    Hopefully, the 'Droid can come out with a version that beats Apple's 4G series that are approaching the market.

    Indeed. [sprint.com] It's also a wifi hotspot for 8 devices, and can stream HD video out of an HDMI port on the phone, in case you're one of those people who likes to watch videos on something other than your phone.

  • by BearRanger (945122) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:18PM (#32161970)

    That's one perspective. But I think you're misreading Apple. Apple doesn't care, and has never cared, about being the largest vendor in any particular space. They only care about being the "best" -- where they get to define what "best" means. Remember when they launched the iPhone and they claimed to want 1% of the smartphone space, which at the time represented perhaps 10% of the mobile phone market? They achieved that goal and then some. Other vendors had to respond to Apple and what Apple was doing. They still are. So success for Apple is to have the lead in mindshare and to make money hand over fist. They're doing that without dominating the market and I suspect they will continue in spite of Android's sales win for this quarter.

    If Apple ends up with a minority share of the market they won't care one bit as long as their share is the most profitable portion of that market.

  • Re:Cool, but .. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Skuld-Chan (302449) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:19PM (#32161978)

    To be fair it wasn't until the N900 that Maemo was even on a phone... which was 2009? Their previous devices were wi-fi tablets only. Android pre-dates that quite a bit. Android Inc was around at least before 2006.

    Nokia really never has treated the platform with any respect - instead shipping crap phones with S60 on them. Even their latest phone - the N8 is Symbian^3.

  • Re:Apple (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:25PM (#32162050)

    Google's Android revenue: 0.
    Apple's iPhone revenue: over $5B per quarter and growing.

    This is a very misleading statement.

    Google does not get revenue directly from selling Android. However, they do indirectly get revenue from in-app advertisements, search advertisements, and app store purchases that are all tied to Android phones. I would be that if Google ever released numbers it would show a significant amount of revenue.

    Considering that they did not have to develop Android from scratch and does not make the hardware; I'd say this is a pretty good deal for Google.

  • by painandgreed (692585) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:43PM (#32162352)

    Who cares? An iPad and iPod are not a smartphone, or a smartphone substitute. They're in a completely different market.

    They're only in a different market if you are a telco. If you are a developer trying to make money by making applications for these devices, 'phone' is just another feature like GPS. What really matters would be the total number of devices that your app can be bought for. If one of the OSs has the developers for the most and best apps, it gives it an advantage over the other phones. Given that the Android developer market currently seems to be split up between different versions of OS and hardware, Apple has a little bit more weight to its cause when not talking strictly phones.

  • Re:surprising? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MobyDisk (75490) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:46PM (#32162410) Homepage

    The phone definitely matters. Just yesterday I noticed that an iPhone 3GS gets 3 bars in my house and an iPhone 3G gets 0 - 1.

  • Re:Bullshit. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:52PM (#32162488)
    I guess it depends on where you live. I see just as many Android phones as iPhones nowadays. Hell at a boardgame party Saturday night (I am that lame) we even whipped 'em all out to compare. 3 iPhones, 3 flavors of Android phones (including my G1) and 1 Palm Pre. The most amazing thing is that a lot of the Android phones that I see are being used by non-tech people and they seem to be as happy with the experience as the iPhone users.

    I never noticed motorcyclists on the road until I started riding.
  • by DdJ (10790) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:55PM (#32162534) Homepage Journal

    You are totally wrong

    My own research (which involves poking at the dev environment and talking with Android developers, but not actually doing Android development yet) leads me to believe that both you and the person you're responding to are partially right.

    You can write very portable apps if you want to. You can write very locked-in apps if you want to. For some developers it's not a problem, and for other developers they're finding that they have to (at least) change the way they think about a lot of stuff.

    There is a (weak) analogy to J2ME here. There was a common subset of J2ME, and if you stuck to it, your apps could run on a wide variety of handsets... but they sucked, since that common subset sucked. The best J2ME apps were written for individual handsets.

    Nothing I've seen indicates that the Android marketplace is that bad. But it's also not "write once, run everywhere, even without putting any design effort into making that come to pass, regardless of the kind of app you're writing".

    For some apps (especially some games), the developers have it stuck in their heads that they must have the background of their main view be based on a pre-rendered bitmap image that's got exactly the same number of pixels as the display it's rendering on. If those folks insist on continuing to think that way, they'll have an awful lot of work to do...

    This would be like saying you program for the iphone vs the iphone 3Gs.

    You know there are cases where you essentially do, right? It's not common for most apps yet, but if you use the newer OpenGL features on the 3Gs, the app won't run on a 3G or 2G. The iPad takes this to an even greater extreme.

  • by jtcampbell (199660) on Monday May 10, 2010 @05:57PM (#32162574) Homepage

    This all rather presumes that Apple simply wants to sell as many iPhones (or iPhoneOS devices) as possible.

    Apple want to be No. 1 in the top 50 or 25% of the market. That's where the profit margins are.

    You can now buy phones running Android for £100. The hardware sucks. The margins must be pretty thin.

    That isn't a game Apple wants to be in.

    The key to Apples success is selling aspirational products. Sure their hardware is more expensive, but it also *feels* more expensive.

  • by 404 Clue Not Found (763556) * on Monday May 10, 2010 @06:00PM (#32162596)

    No virus issues yet (that I know of).

    Crashes... most certainly. Several a day, but thankfully not system-wide.

    Bugs aplenty spread across apps.

    Feels a lot like the early days of Windows, actually.

  • Re:Cool, but .. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by sznupi (719324) on Monday May 10, 2010 @06:26PM (#32162950) Homepage

    Well, S60 allowed those "crap" phones to be smartphones in first place - cheapest S60(v3) smartphones aren't much more expensive than 100 bucks...without contract. Generally they seem to be doing something right if Symbian has half of the market.

    Plus Symbian^3 (and text ones) seems to be going in the good direction; with UI and development based on Qt there won't be that much of a difference from Maemo...

  • by Bill_the_Engineer (772575) on Monday May 10, 2010 @08:11PM (#32163924)

    The leaked iPhone 4G looks like Apple is just trying to catch up with the Nexus One, and not even succeeding at that.

    Wishful thinking? Or do you have a 4G now?

    The big question is when "multitasking" is no longer the major difference between platforms what will be the next Android marketing slogan?

    I have an Android phone, and I can't wait for Google to catch up with Apple. I don't call bringing out a much larger phone with a faster CPU to make up for the poor performance of Google's bastardized Java language anything to cheer about much less as being ahead of Apple. As if that mattered.. What matters is Android approaching the performance levels of Apple iPhone OS on similar hardware.

    I don't care how the latest fastest CPU Android phone measure up against Apple's iPhone. What I do care about is how Android is progressing and operating in phones that I would like to carry with me and in my pocket.

    Believe it or not, some people don't buy a smartphone to compensate for some shortcomings or care about the world versus Apple. However, if Apple is the benchmark that everyone measures themselves against then I need to ask myself why am I sticking with a phone that is similar to an iPhone when I can easily just go get an actual iPhone?

  • Re:Apple (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Teckla (630646) on Monday May 10, 2010 @09:29PM (#32164484)

    I walked into Best Buy on launch day (this was in Boston) and they had a big display with 5 iPads. No lines, 3 of them were not even being used, so I wandered up and played with one for 10 minutes and only at the end did someone else come up behind me to try one out.

    A week or two ago, I walked into Best Buy, and saw some iPads on display as well. One was available, and I wanted to toy around with it, but the greasy, oily fingerprints all over it made me want to vomit. I gazed at it wistfully and forlornly for a few moments, and then left.

    I'm not sure the iPad is for OCD types like me. :(

  • Re:Apple (Score:4, Interesting)

    by tsotha (720379) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @03:59AM (#32166530)
    They say it's selling well, but I'll be damned if I can figure out what it's for. Anything with a backlit display won't be as good an ereader as a Kindle. Too big to fit in your pocket, and no keyboard for serious business use. What are people doing with it?
  • by jipn4 (1367823) on Tuesday May 11, 2010 @05:49AM (#32166954)

    You're making the assumption that it actually is "close enough for practical purposes". I don't think it is. Of course, I don't think the multitasking restrictions are technical in nature anyway; Apple is likely doing this to have yet another way of excluding apps they don't like. For example, with true multitasking, I could run things like a webdav server or metadata server in the background that would give users a better way of organizing and exchanging data between applications than Apple is providing. Apple would kill such an app simply because they don't want someone else providing such functionality.

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