Estimating Android market share for the third quarter

Take a look at this chart. It combines the known shipment data with the total market size for smartphones as defined by Canalys.

Knowing the platform/vendor make-up we can estimate the percent of the market that was Android.

Note that the major unknown is still how much the platform hedgers (Samsung, Other) split their volumes between Android and Windows Mobile (yes, it’s still being sold).

Given this information, I would estimate Android share was around 30% globally. Canalys estimates 25%, which makes this analysis look reasonable.

On a platform basis, Android gains were mostly at the expense of RIM, Symbian and Windows Mobile as we know that the iPhone share remained steady.

Note that in years past the licensing vendors predominantly opted for Windows Mobile, a market that Microsoft wants to regain.

  • TomCF

    I think the graphs would be easier to read if the vendors with highest growth were put at the bottom.

  • r00fus

    Agreed, TomCF. I find this kind of chart misleading because unlike showing profit/revenue for a single cohesive unit, it's showing a share which always balances to 100%. For example, it's pretty clear to see where Nokia and the aggregate Android shares are by using your eye, but not so much anyone in between.

    Maybe listing the numbers so we don't have to go and measure?

    This is one of those cases where something like an animated pie chart (or successive pie charts for quarters/years) would be much easier.

  • vangrieg

    Aha, that would explain the greatest market share mystery of all times to me. I’ve never seen an Android handset made by an “Other”, and Galaxy S isn’t big around here either. So every time I hear those daily Android activation numbers I wonder where all these devices go. Apparently, it’s the US and China.

  • gous

    What a fascinating website! I don't know if you have seen this meticulous analysis at… on the danger signs for RIM. Do you think they are in danger of freefall? Them and Nokia seem to be the big losers at present.

  • Piot

    What's wrong with the Canalys analysis?

    "Once again this quarter, it was devices running the Android platform that proved the greatest driver of growth in the worldwide market, up 1,309% year-on-year from 1.4 million in Q3 2009 to more than 20.0 million units in Q3 2010, forming a quarter of the market share"

    • asymco


  • timnash

    Android flourishes on carriers where it doesn't have competition from iPhone.

  • dave

    In the past few days there have been a rash of reports regarding Android mkt shr. Since most vendors do not break out Android platform sales when they report. Where do they get their numbers?

    Do they look at ad revenue traffic reports?

    My point is aren't all these reports of Android numbers estimates?

    The phone makers are not required to break down their numbers and it seems they do not.

  • Ziad Fazel

    Good work, Horace. In the adjustments and judgments you make, do you account that these surveys track consumer purchases only, and usually miss enterprise purchases and direct online sale.

    I know the NPD survey is limited that way, and believe the Canalys also (can't find reference yet). The missing enterprise sales would favour RIM in the adjustments, and Apple since iOS 4 is likely getting enough enterprise sales to be worth estimating. I doubt Android sales measures would materially rise with the addition of enterprise or direct online sale.