Android most popular smartphone platform in the UK

Darren Allan

April 5, 2011

Yesterday, we saw the continuance of Android’s rise in the US, with the OS capturing a third of the smartphone market in America according to comScore’s latest figures.

Android is, of course, also flying out in the UK, as IDC figures have indicated that Google’s operating system is also the number one smartphone OS in Europe.

And a poll in the UK, conducted by YouGov, underlines Android’s over-taking of the likes of iOS, the Telegraph reports.

2,000 adults were questioned and 28% owned an Android smartphone, compared to 26% with an iPhone. 14% were on BlackBerry. Apparently over four million Brits have gone Android, younger professionals and older users alike.

Android’s steeply upward success curve isn’t likely to be curtailed any time soon, with the amount of devices carrying the OS clearly not abating, and competitive pricing marking a threat to the more expensive likes of the iPhone.

Which is exactly why Apple is now looking at the prospect of a budget iPhone to counter.


Comments in chronological order (17 comments)

  1. Cheis says:

    If that’s true, where are all these phones? Apple and Blackberry are everywhere. I hardly see an Android phone in someones hand.

  2. dan says:

    Must be just your area. I don’t see iphones or blackberrys anymore. Just android.

  3. Cheis says:

    Oh, right that explains it then.

  4. ian says:

    It’s an impossible comparison to make in an unbiased way…

    OK so 28% own an Android smartphone vs 26% an iPhone.

    So taking those as accurate, the android is the best selling platform on smartphones…

    Arguing the other way:

    It’s probably NOT the best selling smartphone platform - subtle phrasing, but they’re both smartphone platforms, but iOS is onother devices, so the iPhone PLATFORM (or rather iOS) is selling more devices than android.

    Android isn’t even the best selling smartphone - unless one device is accounting for virtually all of that 28%, the iPhone is probably the best selling smartphone.

    Apple are also the most sucessful smartphone manufacturer (by most definitions - they make smartphones and they’ve got tons of money).

    Bestselling also does not necessarily equal “popular”. I’ve got an android device and an iOS device. One gets used (and borrowed by the kids) on a constant basis while the other is gathering dust in a drawer somewhere. One is POPULAR, sales are equal.

    I’m not claiming that Apple aren’t loosing sales to Android, or that they shouldn’t be worried, but simply that the 28% figure means little in itself.

  5. Android-oid says:

    @ ian
    You sound worried mate!

  6. esteban says:

    hmm well everyone i know has apple or blackberry, and i have not seen android phone for a while, so i wonder if these figures are from 2009. we have over 500 employes at my work and more then half have apple and quite few others have blackberry.

  7. t0m5k1 says:

    Well mine was great until Google locations thinks I’m in Taiwan when I’m in UK
    Now I have no support channel other than Google help
    Open source might be great but something just fail

  8. Darren Allan says:

    Esteban, the figures are definitely up to date, not old…

  9. Jon says:

    @ian - your argument makes no sense. Yes iOS is on other devices other than smartphones but so is Android. This article is a comparison of the platform on smartphones, not all devices.

    I do agree on your popularity comment though. Just because sales are higher for Android than iPhone doesn’t make it more popular. It might be that people want an iPhone but can’t afford the premium prices.

  10. Simon says:

    Pointless article. They give Android phones away with contracts. It’s hardly then surprising that there are a growing number of devices running the Android OS. It’s also a good point that iOS, as an OS, has much greater penetration than Android. After all how many people do you know that have an iPhone and pull out and Android/Blackberry based music player (that plays apps) as well, none as there is no such device ( at least no such popular device).

    I guess my question to this article is what is it actually saying. People like free stuff… lol

    I would argue that Android is not a threat to iOS in the same way that Windows isn’t a threat to OS-X. This may sound stupid, but think about it. Those who pay good money for a reasonable PC have a good experience, those who don’t and get a budget PC tend to complain how slow it is and how it crashes. Same with Android phones if you get the top end phone its a good experience. If you get a cheap one it’s not so great and I’d argue that all Android (on cheap phones) will succeed in doing will be to create more people looking for iOS, just like more and more people are converting to OS-X. It’s not about software (totally) it’s about the complete package. People want smartphones, they think “hey I’ve got one”, then they see hmm, perhaps I should have paid for a better one, I’ll change in 12/24months.

    To put it another way (and going off topic) When Windows crashes, do users blame the budget hardware or the OS. I know I used to blame the OS and I’m sure most people would. So cheap Android handsets will literarily drive people to Apple. Google may as well hand out iPhones/iPads/iPod Touches as a way of apologising for the very Microsoft solution, that is budget hardware and varying results.

  11. Phill says:

    But…but…iPhones…they’re so shiny!!

  12. Simon says:

    someones trolling…

  13. Brian Turner says:

    I think the point a lot of people is missing is that - whatever your interest - the article states that the iPhone owns nearly a third of the smartphone market.

    That’s just *one* device (okay, so there’s 3G and 4, but the second is a new generation product rather than marketed at a different audience level).

    While android may currently be populer - because it’s free for manufacturers to use - can anyone name a single android phone with 1/3 market share?

    I think that in itself speaks volumes about how powerful the iPhone is.

    And before anyone calls me an Apple fanboy, my phone is a HTC Desire HD.

  14. ezman says:

    A lot of people get confused as to the significance of the popularity of a particular platform.
    Whether someone buys an android because they love it or because that’s all they can afford or want to pay isn’t of importance.
    When Android was first on the rise, Iphone users claimed that there were no Apps for Android and it wasn’t a viable platform, (as many would say about android tablets now).
    But as the platform rises it becomes dominant and soon the balance of services and apps for Android+improvements to software and hardware will mean that the reasons to get an iPhone become less and less and the market share problem compounds.
    Basically, iPhone has been a dominant player in the smartphone market, now it’s Android running the show - in the future Apple will just be like Apple in the PC world. Small market share for niche users and ‘think different’ people at premium prices. Nothing wrong with that, the world goes on.
    If you’re an Iphone fan you should be happy not worried, there was a time where everyone around me had iPhones, hardly elite! Now you can feel elevated above the Android commoners!
    Market projections are for a share comparison of 45% Android to 15% iPhone in 2016.

  15. Simon says:

    “in the future Apple will just be like Apple in the PC world”

    I had to pull you up on your understanding of the PC world lol. As Apple out sells the largest PC manufacturers individually. You can hardly call it a niche player.

    “Small market share for niche users and ‘think different’ people at premium prices”

    Where’s the premium? A similarly spec’d PC would cost the same as an equivalent mac. Likewise the good Android devices are similarly priced, although carriers have greater flexibility to subsidise Android devices than they would Apple products. The idea that Apple will become a niche player, just because there are more phones running Android is quite amusing. If we’re comparing phones then let’s compare phones by manufacturer and evaluate Market share respectively. If we are looking at the instal base of a particular OS then let’s do that and then you’d see the dominance of iOS over Android, blackberry etc. Hardly statistically speaking a niche player.

  16. SSH22 says:

    Hey Apple Fanboys quit crying like usual. First is was PC vs Mac now it this. I just got done with 3 years of iPHones now I’ve switched like many of my friends are. Nothing lower quality about the phones and trust me they are not free. I think most Apple Fanboys on these sites are lower class, in debt and think owning something with an “i” on it raises your intelligence and social status. NEWS FLASH: You are still losers. At every turn.

  17. Simon says:

    An informative and well balanced argument… Trolling or just a little slow, I’ll let others decide. Thanks for the insight x

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