Android Crushes the Competition, iPhone Stands Still

The latest quarterly smartphone results are in from market research firm comScore, and surprise-surprise, Google's Android platform continues to rock the marketplace while everyone else looks on.

According to comScore, smartphone usage is up 18 percent in the latest quarter, sitting just shy of 43 million users. And while Google's Android OS sits in fourth place behind RIM, Apple, and Microsoft, it's the only one with a significant trend upwards.

"42.7 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones in an average month during the November to January period, up 18 percent from the August through October period. RIM was the leading mobile smartphone platform in the U.S. with 43.0 percent share of U.S. smartphone subscribers, rising 1.7 percentage points versus three months earlier. Apple ranked second with 25.1 percent share (up 0.3 percentage points), followed by Microsoft at 15.7 percent, Google at 7.1 percent (up 4.3 percentage points), and Palm at 5.7 percent. Google’s Android platform continues to see rapid gains in market share."
As comScore puts it, "Google's Android platform continues to see rapid gains in market share," which might be an understatement. By contrast, Apple remained stagnant for the quarter, while Microsoft tumbled backwards by nearly the same pace as Android moved forward.

This isn't really all that surprising, given that all four major wireless carriers in the U.S. now carry Android phones. Apple's iPhone, on the other hand, is still only available through AT&T, a strategy Apple may want to rethink if it hopes to maintain its lead over most of the competition.

It will be interesting to see what another quarter brings to the table. Should we see more of the same, it's entirely possible that Microsoft and Google could switch places, putting Android within striking distance of Apple.