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Christmas Day 2012 saw record-breaking number of iOS and Android activations

How to choose an e-reader or tablet for the holidays

When it comes to mobile industry sales, it’s no surprise that smartphones, tablets, and other gadgets see a surge in purchases around the holiday season. Earlier this week on Christmas Day 2012, however, both Apple and Android have beaten their own records.

According to data from Flurry Analytics, which examined a database of more than 260,00 apps, more Android, and iOS devices were activated on Christmas Day this year than any other day in history. To be exact, there were more than 17.4 million activations recorded on December 25. This is 332 percent over the baseline for the month of December, Flurry’s data indicated.

These activations have come from a variety of devices including iPhones, iPads, Galaxy devices, Kindle Fires, and more. The number of new activated devices this year more than doubles that of Christmas 2011, which saw 6.8 million activations. This was the previous single-day record, but this year’s holiday activations completely shattered that achievement.

This, of course, means that there has also been an unprecedented number of app downloads as well. Using its percentage penetration per platform, Flurry estimated the total number of market apps downloaded on Christmas Day. The company checked these numbers against publicly released figures from Apple and Google, just as it did with the information on device activations.

Christmas Day 2012 saw 328 million downloads from both Apple and Android’s app stores. Compared to the baseline for app downloads established in the first 20 days of December, this is an increase of 128 percent. Yet again, this breaks the record for the most apps downloaded in a single day in history.

It’s worth noting that tablets saw a massive jump in activations this holiday. According to Flurry, the ratio of smartphone to tablet activations is usually 4:1, with phones accounting for 80 percent of activations and slates comprising 20 percent. On Christmas Day 2012, however, smartphone activations only hit 49 percent and tablets accounted for a whopping 51 percent.

This doesn’t come as too much of a surprise, considering tablets don’t come with the two-year contracts that smartphones are usually tethered to. Unless users purchase a 3G-enabled tablet that requires a data plan, it’s easier to surprise someone with a tablet without the complication of contracts.