Android Mobile OS Now Number One in U.S. Market Share

It seems like just a few months ago, we were reporting that despite how the Research in Motion (RIM) Blackberry devices seem to be lagging behind popular smart phones like the iPhone 4 and the various Android-powered smartphones like the Droid 2 and Droid Incredible, RIM somehow managed to hang onto it’s market dominance in the U.S.

What a difference a few months can make. For the first time ever, Android has taken the number one spot in the U.S. Market, with nearly one third (31.2%) of all  U.S. smartphones running Google’s Android OS as of January 2011. This is according to a study released Monday by comScore. Android managed to best the BlackBerry share of 30.4% of American smart phone owners, as well as the popular Apple iOS and easily trounced the new kid on the block, Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7.

As you may recall, the Android mobile operating system didn’t even exist before late 2008. It’s modest launch device was the HTC G1 available only on T-Mobile. I owned one of those original ‘Google Phones’ and as clunky and slow as it seems in hindsight, it really was a device on par with the iPhone at the time, only with an extremely anemic app selection by comparison.

It wasn’t until late 2009, with the release of the original Motorola ‘Droid,’ that the graph really started to spike for Google’s mobile OS. Soon, their market share was ticking upwards about 2 percentage points every month. Nowadays, more than 350,000 Android devices are activated each and every day. Google’s success in this arena really comes down to two factors: plenty of choice with more than 150 Android-powered devices to choose from and Google’s open source like licensing which allows handset manufacturers to load the OS for free. The ability for these same manufacturers to customize the OS any way they’d like certainly makes it appealing as well.

So what’s your opinion? Are you tempted by an Android-powered smart phone? Do you already have one? What about tablets powered by Android 3.0 ‘Honeycomb?’ Be sure to let us know in the comments section.

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