1 in 2 smartphones now running Android

1 in 2 smartphones run Android
Android is set to dominate further in 2012

Android claimed over 50% of the smartphone market share in the last three months of 2011 which sees Google's mobile OS appearing on one in two smartphones.

According to stats gathered by Gartner the smartphone market witnessed huge growth in Q4 of 2011 with sales to end users reaching 149 million units - a 47.3% increase from the fourth quarter in 2010.

This boost in sales resulted in Android claiming 50.9% of the smartphone market, up from 30.5% in the same quarter in 2010. Apple also saw an increase in market share for its iOS system as it claimed 23.8% in Q4, up from 15.8% in 2010.

Symbian down as new kids storm in

Nokia's Symbian OS on the other hand saw a large drop in the smartphone market share, slipping down to third place with 11.7%.

It's not all bad news for Nokia though as Gartner reports that it's still the number one global vendor of mobile devices – with its entry level handsets widely shipped to Asia and other developing countries.

Emerging manufactures such as ZTE and Huawei have started to stake a claim in the mid and low-range smartphone markets and both companies saw gains during the last quarter of 2011 as they became the fastest growing mobile vendors after Apple.

ZTE is now the fifth largest mobile devices vendor in the world after it shipped 56 million handsets in 2011.

The increased presence of these newer companies has helped Android take the majority share in what is a very competitive smartphone market.

Gartner predicts Android's position will strengthen further in early 2012 as Apple's delayed launch of the next iPhone will see a decline in sales in the first two quarters of the year.

From Gartner

John McCann
Global Managing Editor

John joined TechRadar over a decade ago as Staff Writer for Phones, and over the years has built up a vast knowledge of the tech industry. He's interviewed CEOs from some of the world's biggest tech firms, visited their HQs and has appeared on live TV and radio, including Sky News, BBC News, BBC World News, Al Jazeera, LBC and BBC Radio 4. Originally specializing in phones, tablets and wearables, John is now TechRadar's resident automotive expert, reviewing the latest and greatest EVs and PHEVs on the market. John also looks after the day-to-day running of the site.