US smartphone users now over 100 million, Android increases market share

Research firm comScore has released its latest set of data looking at key trends in the US mobile market for the three-month period ending January 2012.

One figure which caught the eye was its finding that for the first time there are now more than 100 million mobile subscribers in the US using smartphones. The exact figure was put at 101.3 million, an increase of 13 percent from October.

No doubt that figure was helped by the launch of Apple’s popular iPhone 4S handset in October. Indeed, Apple saw its smartphone platform share increase 1.4 percent in the three-month period ending January 2012 over the preceding three-month period. The Cupertino company now has a 29.5 percent share of the smartphone platform market.

Google’s Android operating system, on the other hand, comfortably maintains its number one position with a 48.6 percent market share, up 2.3 percent from the previous three-month period. It looks like it won’t be long before Android is on more than half of all US smartphones.

The biggest loser was Research In Motion, which saw its presence in the American smartphone market drop by 2 percent, giving it a 15.2 percent share. In January, following a difficult 2011, Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie stepped down from running RIM, making way for the company’s former chief operating officer, Thorsten Heins. Heins now faces the unenviable task of trying to turn around the fortunes of the company.

As far as the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) market goes, comScore’s figures show that of the top five OEMs, only Apple made any gains, with its market share rising 2 percent to 12.8 percent.

Samsung, with its enormous number of smartphones on the market, remained in the top spot, with a 25.4 percent share. This marks a tiny drop of just 0.1 percent from the previous three-month period ending October 2011. In second position was another Korean electronics giant, LG, with a healthy 19.7 percent of the market.

According to comScore, 234 million Americans aged 13 and older now use mobile devices. In a country with a population of 311 million, that’s an impressive figure.

The research company’s study involved more than 30,000 US mobile subscribers.

[Image: Reno Martin / Shutterstock]

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