ABI Research has calculated that Android overtook iOS in Q2 2011 to have the largest market share for mobile application downloads. It says 44% of downloaded apps were for Android devices, compared with 31% for Apple’s iOS. However, the average Apple user still downloads more apps than the average Android customer.
Lim Shiyang, research associate at ABI, said “Android’s open source strategy is the main factor for its success. Being a free platform has expanded the Android device install base, which in turn has driven growth in the number of third party multi-platform and mobile operator app stores. These conditions alone explain why Android is the new leader in the mobile application market.”
The announcement follows steady growth in the number of Android devices. iPhone shipment growth slowed in Q2 2011 to 9% from 15% a quarter earlier, while Android smartphone shipments had increased from 20% 36% in Q2 2011. The number of Android devices worldwide now exceeds iOS by a factor of 2.4-to-1, with an increase to 3-to-1 expected by 2016.
The total number of app downloads this year is expected to reach 29 billion, up from only nine billion in 2010.
[ABI Research report]