A large increase in the percentage of US smartphone owners using the Google Android smartphone platform and simultaneous decrease in the percentage using the RIM Blackberry platform led Google to displace the longtime US smartphone platform leader in January 2011, according to new comScore Mobile Metrix data. Google claimed the top spot with a 31.2% share, up almost 33% from 23.5% in October 2010.
Meanwhile, RIM lost 15% of its US smartphone platform share in the same time period, dropping from 35.8% to 30.4%. The other leading US smartphone platform provider, Apple, remained almost flat in percentage by going from 24.6% to 24.7% market share. However, this incremental increase was not enough to keep Apple from dropping from second to third place.
Microsoft and Palm rounded out the top five US smartphone platform providers by remaining in their respective fourth and fifth place positions, with each losing almost 18% of its share.
A total of 65.8 million people in the US owned smartphones during the three months ending in January 2011, up 8% from the preceding three-month period.
For the three-month average period ending in January 2011, 234 million Americans ages 13 and older used mobile devices. There were no significant changes in the popularity of mobile OEM providers. Device manufacturer Samsung ranked as the top OEM with 24.9% of U.S. mobile subscribers, up about 3% from the three-month period ending in October 2010. LG ranked second with 20.8% share, followed by Motorola (16.5%), RIM (8.6%) and Apple (7%).
Subscribers who used downloaded applications comprised 35.3% of the mobile audience, representing an increase of almost 5.5%. Accessing of social networking sites or blogs increased 4.5%, representing 25.3% of mobile subscribers. Playing games represented 23.7% of the mobile audience (also flat compared to October 2010), while listening to music represented 16.5% (up 7%).
When it comes to US consumer marketshare by operating system, Nielsen Company analysis of January 2011 data also determines that Android (29%) is pulling ahead of RIM Blackberry (27%) and Apple iOS (27%). But an analysis by manufacturer shows RIM and Apple to be the winners compared to other device makers, since they are the only ones creating and selling smartphones with their respective operating systems.
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