Android iPhone and iPad Tech News

Android Now Powers 9 Out of 10 Smartphones

Dave Parrack 03-11-2016

The mobile operating system war is now over. And Android won. Because while Apple still sells shedloads of iPhones, 9 of 10 smartphones sold around the world is now powered by Android. And those numbers are unlikely to change anytime soon.


When it comes to gadgets, there has always been a propensity to take sides. The most obvious example is PC vs. Mac Apples vs. Oranges: A Long Time Windows User Meets OS X What could happen when a long-time Windows user drops their defense and uses a Mac for the first time in years? Read More , but there have also been web browser wars, games console wars, and many more besides.

The current binary option of choice is Android vs. iOS. There used to be other alternatives vying for your attention, but with BlackBerry no longer a thing BlackBerry Stops Making Phones and Nobody Cares The long and drawn-out decline of BlackBerry continues. The latest twist in the tale being BlackBerry announcing it will no longer be developing or producing its own handsets. Read More , and Microsoft’s commitment to Windows Phone being called into question Lenovo Doubts Microsoft's Commitment to Windows 10 Mobile Lenovo has zero interest in Windows 10 Mobile, and will not be making a smartphone powered by Microsoft's mobile operating system anytime soon. Lenovo isn't even convinced Microsoft is committed to Windows 10 Mobile. Read More , consumers really only have two mobile operating systems to choose from.

The choice is between Android and iOS, and the vast majority of consumers of choosing Android. So much so that Strategy Analytics suggests that Android now enjoys an 87.5% share of the market. Apple’s iOS, on the other hand, only controls a 12.1% share of the market.

Woody Oh, Director at Strategy Analytics, said:

“Android’s leadership of the global smartphone market looks unassailable at the moment. Its low-cost services and user-friendly software remain attractive to hardware makers, operators and consumers worldwide.”

Does Market Share Actually Matter?

You may be shrugging your shoulders right about now, because you believe these figures are unimportant. If so, you probably own an iPhone. You’re also wrong. Dominating the market in the way Android currently is matters. To Google, to Apple, and to you, the consumer.


The positives for Google are patently obvious. As are the negatives for Apple. But in terms of consumers, it’s all about the apps. Some people believe iOS apps are still superior to their Android equivalents Why Are iOS Apps Still Better Than Android Apps? I feel I can safely make the claim that iOS apps are just better. Put down the pitchforks for a moment, and hear me out. Read More , but that’s unlikely to remain the case if things carry on as they are.

With Android enjoying such a vast lead over iOS, developers will increasingly focus on Google’s mobile operating system. After all, developers just want to reach the most number of users they possibly can. Which is why many apps are now being launched on Android before they’re ported to iOS.

Are you an Android user or an iOS user? What led to you making that choice? Do you care about the market share of your chosen operating system? Have you noticed any real-world effects from the situation? Please let us know in the comments below!

Image Credit: Maurizio Pesce via Flickr

Related topics: Android, Apple, Google, iOS.

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  1. Mauro Biscotti
    November 6, 2016 at 1:41 pm

    I try not to get emotionally involved with my digital devices or other consumer products. The constant squabbling and back and forth between Apple users and Windows users, between iOS users and Android users etc. is a sign of...insanity, late-capitalist anomie? Whatever it is I don't drink from that particular KoolAid bowl. The Apple fanbois and the Fandroids are suffering from the same malignancy although I do think the Apple FANatics have a slightly more advanced case. Jailbreakers seem to be a notable exception...maybe because a lot of them own Droids to get them through JB droughts.

    About the significance (or lack thereof) of market share. As long as Apple can keep iPhone sales at the current level or higher it should not have a huge impact on app quality. The vast majority of apps on both platforms available today are garbage...e.g. fifty QR scanners that use the exact same skin and icon but have a (slightly) different name, 50 dozen crappy one use games and 500 dozen cobbled together POS apps nobody uses. Quantity does not equal quality. Don't get me wrong, there are many good, even excellent, quality apps available. But do a browse through the Play Store and App Store and the junk outnumbers the keepers by 10:1.

    MacOS has been at < 20% market share for decades and there is more than enough software available for that platform and seamless cross-platform integration has been a thing for years now. Unless iOS users abandon the platform in droves (always possible...especially given Apple's innovation stifling overly-conservative, arrogant control freakery) it will be okay. Ditching the 1/8" headphone jack and acting like they invented Bluetooth is incredibly short-sighted, IMO. Innovation it ain't. And from what I've seen iOS 10's UI looks fugly as hell.

    Who knows..what will happen. Low market share isn't a problem if it stays at a sustainable level...if it keeps falling then it becomes a problem. If Apple is going to charge a premium for its gadgets it had better up its innovation has enough money to play around with. I think if you start seeing jailbreakers ditch their iOS devices for good that will be the beginning of then end of iOS. We shall see..

  2. Tony
    November 5, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    Android User
    -floating apps
    -split screen
    -cost effective accessories
    -companies competing for my business (see above)
    -file management control
    -Amoled display (I read alot on my phone)
    -customization (buttons, icons, swipes, gestures, nfc tags, ir blaster, tasker, etc.)
    -All that being said, when people ask me what phone they should get, I respond "You should get an iphone". Why? Simplicity. If you only have one option, then you can't be frustrated by 3+. Not everyone can be free.

  3. JDR
    November 5, 2016 at 1:32 am

    I use Apple products because I want products that just work. If I wanted toys to customize then I would go with an Android device. iOS is inherently more secure than Android at this present time. I'am the IT director for small nursing campus, and like this article says 9/10 use Android devices. It's more like 6/10 where I work. Regardless, every phone is running a different version of Android, most of them complain about the app store iOS users never bitch. So normalizing of versions spread out across all of the Android devices would be nice, in addition to a standard UI.

  4. Dave Muswell
    November 4, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    Yes its true, 9/10 can afford iphones

  5. acyinks
    November 4, 2016 at 2:24 pm

    I have both and Android phone and an iPhone. I own the Android phone and my work gave me the iPhone. I have used Android for about 4 years now and iOS for 1 year and the difference is amazing. The Android phone is customizable beyond the comprehension of a dedicated iPhone user. It is easier, more intuitive, and all around a far superior OS. The iPhone on the other hand is far from intuitive. Even after a year there are still things I struggle do on the iPhone that are just simple to perform on Android. The iPhone screen is tiny and typing messages/emails is a disaster. What should normally take under 5 minutes normally takes over 10 on the iPhone. Next to Android iOS is clunky.

    • Jackie
      November 6, 2016 at 8:00 pm

      Keep practising mate, sooner ore latter you will get through, need intellectual skill to understand IOS,not for all.

  6. John
    November 4, 2016 at 3:28 am

    I will never ever ever in my life throw money down the toilet, I mean purchase an Apple product.

  7. William Vasquez
    November 3, 2016 at 8:20 pm

    I've been using an Android phone for over 2 years now, and I enjoy the almost unlimited amount of apps that are available. It all comes down to one word...choice! I like choosing which phone manufacturer I prefer. I like the lower cost that comes with competition. I like using any headphones that I want since the beginning of time. I want the choice of removable batteries and SD card storage. I want the choice of getting into the OS and changing it if I want to. All of this and more are probably the reasons that 9 out of 10 people prefer and buy Android phones.