Gartner: Android dominates smartphone sales worldwide

Gartner's first-quarter numbers say Android accounts for 36 per cent of sales

Another day, another report saying Android rules the smartphone world, this time from Gartner.

Gartner's first-quarter numbers say Android leads in worldwide smartphone market share, accounting for 36 per cent of sales. Nokia slipped to second place with 27.4 per cent market share, followed by Apple's iOS in third place with 16.8 per cent. Research in Motion's BlackBerry and Microsoft's Windows phones round out the top five with 12.9 per cent and 3.6 per cent, respectively.

Here are a few takeaways from Gartner's smartphone report:

Everyone Wins (Almost)

Often lost in the market share horse race coverage is the fact that nearly all smartphone platforms are growing, and fast. Symbian lost market share year-over-year, but sales grew by nearly 15 per cent. iOS only gained 1.5 per cent market share year-over-year, but unit sales more than doubled. On the whole, Gartner says smartphone sales grew 85 per cent compared with the first quarter of 2010, now accounting 23.6 per cent of overall phone sales.

The only losing mobile platform? Windows phones, whose unit sales fell by about one per cent as Microsoft tries to transition from its old Windows Mobile to the new Windows Phone 7. Gartner doesn't list WebOS individually.

Beware 'Other' Androids

While Android seems to be making huge gains, the real smartphone explosion is coming from what Gartner calls "other" manufacturers, whose collective unit sales grew by 48.5 million year-over-year. No other smartphone maker has seen growth like that. In fact, several vendors that have embraced Android have seen their total year-over-year sales fall, including LG, Motorola and Sony Ericsson, as their businesses transition to smartphones. We can assume that a large portion of worldwide Android growth comes from the "other" category, consisting of brands you've never heard of in emerging markets.

That said, there are plenty of studies and surveys showing Android's ascent in the United States, where big brands reign.

HTC and Samsung All the Way

Not every phone maker is reaping the rewards of Android, but Samsung and HTC appear to be cleaning up. Samsung saw six per cent year-over-year growth in phone sales -- an increase of 3.9 million units -- and HTC exploded by 176 per cent, with about 5.9 million more phone sales than the first quarter of 2010. This should be no surprise; out of PCWorld's list of top 10 smartphones, HTC and Samsung each make three.

Don't Forget to Profit

Tempting as it may be to count Apple out of the smartphone race, keep in mind that market share isn't everything. A recent report from Asymco found that despite the Apple's small sliver of the smartphone market, the iPhone accounts for 55 per cent of all smartphone profits.

Follow Jared on Facebook and Twitter for even more tech news and commentary.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags MicrosoftNokiaGartnerGoogleAppleAndroidioswindows phone 7htcsymbianPhonessamsungconsumer electronicsRIM BlackBerry

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jared Newman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?