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Google Android now running on 22 percent of the tablets

Apple proves to be the one losing out with a 20 per cent fall in share

Google’s Android OS for mobile devices has been mighty popular since its launch in 2008, with one of its primary competitors being Apple’s iOS. The Android OS has found quite a place in tablets, although Google is yet to out a version of the OS suited for tablet displays. But even then, the latest figures point out the success story of Android with respect to tablets in a big way.

Research firm Strategy Analytics have given out data that says that of the 9.7 million tablets sold in the last quarter of 2010, Android was pre-loaded on 2.1 million, which calculates to a huge 22 per cent share; that is a pretty impressive figure for an OS launched less than 3 years ago.  Talking of Android’s competitor and market leader, iOS, it achieved a 75.3 per cent market share in the same time frame; and that is a far cry from the 95.5 per cent in the previous quarter. This massive drop in iOS’ popularity can be largely attributed to the low cost of Android-based devices and the Android OS coming pre-installed with useful and popular Google services like Google Maps, YouTube, Google Navigation, Google Voice, Google Goggles, etc.

What’s more, the firm expects the share for Android to increase further in 2011 with new tablets from major manufacturers coming in, like the Motorola Xoom and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2. Moreover, with the tablet-ready Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) version set for a release shortly, the market for Android tablets will see a massive growth. As a consequence, the only one to lose here is Apple, as it is up against a number of major players supporting the Android platform. But Apple is all set to launch the second generation iPad too. Will Apple prove to be dominant with a single product in its hands? Only time will tell.


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Pallab Jyotee Hazarika, 2011-02- 1 (Update: 2012-05-26)