Freight Train Kept A-Rollin’
2011 was the year of Android. A small over the year ago Andy Rubin tweeted which 300,000 Android inclination were being activated any day. In Jan we reported which Android had surpassed iOS in conditions of US smartphone marketplace share. In Jun Android’s activations-per-day reached 500,000; this month they hit 700,000. That’s more than double the rate during which it was swelling when it overtook iOS.
By comparison, UBS estimated in Dec which Apple would sell thirty million iPhones in 4Q 2011. Sounds similar to the lot, until we comprehend which Android inclination — roughly all of which have been phones, as Rubin’s numbers don’t include Kindle Fires or Nooks — have been being activated during the rate of five million the week, or 65 million in the quarter. In alternative words, Android phone sales were substantially tighten to double Apple’s during the entertain in which Apple’s flagship iPhone 4S was released. we design Apple outsold Android during Christmas, since which they boasted this year’s three most longed for gifts, yet Android will have up which disproportion in the couple of reduced weeks.
How did this happen? Certainly not since Android is better. Almost no the singular disputes which Apple’s user knowledge is superior. Thanks to Android’s horrific fragmentation problems, the Android chronicle which developers write apps for – 2.2, which was expelled in May 2010 – is clearly defective to iOS 5. The iPhone 4S is the illusory high-end phone, the 4 the superb mid-level one, as well as the 3GS still the critical player in the free-with-contract market. So since has everybody left Android?
Partly since America is not the world. The iPhone 4S was the outrageous strike in the USA as well as the UK, yet not so much in the rest of Europe. It’s substantially not the fluke which prepaid (ie no-contract) mobile use is some-more renouned in Europe than America (though which might slowly be changing) as well as much some-more popular, verging upon ubiquitous, in the building world. Right right away Android flattering most owns the complete prepaid smartphone market.
But it’s not only the low finish of the market, as well as it’s not only the accessibility of most opposite handsets. Samsung alone has sole more than 10 million Galaxy S IIs, together with mine. we went Android since we debate of Apple’s hegemonic, hermetically-sealed proceed to technology, even yet we consider the iPhone 4S is the rather improved phone, yet that’s only me. It seems which most most millions of people honestly cite Android’s anarchic, fragmented, as well as mostly awkward UX as well as ecosystem to Apple’s seamless sleekness. That might appear bizarre to some, yet it has turn inarguable.
And it’s only the beginning. we pronounced this time final year, “Android will raze … in the building world.” Now that’s eventually happening. When we was in Kenya progressing this year the latest US$100 Huawei Android had only turn the phone of choice for Africa’s burgeoning center class. Android has just proposed to go hockey-stick in Brazil — an manage to buy that’s right away bigger than the UK’s. Place your bets, ladies as well as gents: how prolonged prior to Android activations strike the million each singular day?
All of which is good headlines for Google. They might or might not have the raise of income off Android. What’s some-more critical to them is which it’s an increasingly insurmountable moat. Bill Gurley of Benchmark Capital presciently called Android the freight train 9 months ago. How right he was. Can Apple stop it? Can anyone? we disbelief it, unless it someway derails, as well as we only can’t see which happening. It has as well most movement upon the side.
Image credit: Trans-Siberian burden train, by yours truly.