Android claims top spot over Symbian in global smartphone shipments

Worldwide smart phone marketBritish research firm Canalys announced today that Android has officially dethroned Symbian as the world’s most popular smartphone platform. The Nokia-backed OS has long-held the top spot, but Canalys reports that “Shipments of Android-based smartphones reached 32.9 million, while devices running Nokia’s Symbian platform trailed slightly at 31.0 million worldwide.”

Nokia only just reclaimed Symbian operations in November after manufacturers were being lured away by Android. The platform has struggled recently to compete against the likes of RIM, Android, and Apple, and developer interest in the OS has waned. Still, Nokia has resisted jumping on bored with Android because, it claims, the OS doesn’t allow manufacturers enough room to define their brands.

While Nokia and Symbian have undeniably struggled, particularly with North American consumers, it’s important to note that the numbers from Canalys reflect handsets shipped in the fourth quarter of 2010. Nokia remains the number one global smartphone retailer, with a market share of 28 percent (The New York Times claims this number is actually 31 percent, according to Boston research firm Strategy Analytics). But despite its overall global presence, Nokia knows it can only ride its former popularity for so long, and warns investors its profit margin will drop somewhere between seven and 10 percent. The cell phone maker revealed fourth quarter numbers, saying it gave a “solid performance,” but admitted “the industry changed, and now it’s time for Nokia to change.” This seems to reference the fact that it’s been unable to offer a competent high-end smartphone OS thus far, and CEO Stephen Elop will share Nokia’s new strategy for Symbian and Meego at next month’s Mobile World Congress. This new strategy could include partnering with Microsoft on a new Windows Phone 7 model, which has been rumored recently.

But Android’s success isn’t only in thanks to Symbian’s struggle. Canalys noted that strong sales from retailers like LG, Samsung, Acer, and HTC are also responsible.

Overall market growth was additionally phenomenal this year. Over 2010, shipments reached 101.2 million and in the fourth quarter, skyrocketed to an 80 percent growth since 2009. The US also shipped the most handheld devices, with RIM, Apple, and HTC taking top spots.

Product Review

Google Pixelbook review

Do you want the best Chromebook money can buy? Our Google Pixelbook review examines the operating system’s new flagship, which includes 2-in-1 versatility, an active stylus, and Google Assistant.
Photography

These point-and-shoot cameras make your smartphone pics look like cave paintings

If your smartphone camera just isn't giving you the results you're looking for, maybe it's time to step up your game. The latest and greatest point-and-shoot cameras offer large sensors, tough bodies, and long lenses - something no phone…
Wearables

These are the best smartwatches for everything from fashion to fitness

Tempted to buy a smartwatch? If so, then the growing number of great models available means you've got plenty to choose from. But which one should you pick? Here is our list of the best smartwatches.
Computing

Google's Pixel Slate is new, but does it make the Pixelbook irrelevant?

The ultimate battle of premium Chromebooks — Google's Pixelbook vs Pixel Slate. Two top-shelf devices for the ultimate ChromeOS fan, but which machine will fit best into your daily life?
Mobile

Pocket transforms articles into podcasts with an assist from Amazon

Read-it-later app Pocket is adding an option to turn articles into easily navigable podcasts with its new app redesign for iOS and Android. The feature relies on Amazon's voice-to-text service Polly.
Mobile

Here’s our guide on how to get ‘Fortnite’ on your Android device

'Fortnite: Battle Royale' is one of the biggest games in the world right now, and it's finally on Android, even if getting set up is a bit long-winded. Here's how to play 'Fortnite: Battle Royale' on an Android device.
Product Review

Hotter than a Dot? Google's Home Mini outsmarts, doesn't outperform Amazon rival

With voice match and improved artificial intelligence capabilities, the $49 Google Home Mini is a voice assistant that seamlessly puts the Google platform on the tip of your tongue.
Computing

How to recover Google contacts

If you accidentally deleted an important person from your Google Contacts, they might not be lost forever. Recovering them is a fairly easy process -- as long as you do it quickly. Here's how.
Deals

Save up to $1,000 with the best smartphone deals for October 2018

Need a better phone but don't want to spend a fortune? It's never a bad time to score a new smartphone and save some cash. We rounded up the best smartphone deals available that can save you as much as $1,000.
Mobile

Got gadgets galore? Keep them charged up with the 10 best USB-C cables

If you weren't already aware, USB-C is quickly becoming mainstream. That's why we've rounded up some of the better USB-C cables on the market, whether you're looking to charge or sync your smartphone.
Computing

Tired of choosing between Windows and Mac? Check out these Chromebooks instead

We've compiled a list of the best Chromebooks -- laptops that combine great battery life, comfortable keyboards, and the performance it takes to run Google's lightweight Chrome OS. From Samsung to Acer, these are the Chromebooks that really…
Mobile

OnePlus charges into U.K. carrier stores, leaving online-only start in the past

OnePlus's next phone, the OnePlus 6T, will be more widely available than any OnePlus phone before it, as the company has announced major deals with retailers in the U.K. The device launches on October 30.
Mobile

The Palm has been revived, and it wants to help you limit your smartphone usage

A reboot of the classic Palm is finally here and it's tiny. It syncs to your phone and acts as a secondary device -- with a feature to help you disconnect from technology. At $350, the Palm will be available exclusively through Verizon.
Product Review

The all-new Palm wants to be many things, but it’s really just a tiny smartphone

The all-new Palm is here, and it’s tinier than ever. Exclusive to Verizon, it syncs to your primary smartphone and acts as a secondary device -- with features to help you disconnect from technology. But at $350, is it worth the high price…