Sometimes, in the race between Apple and Android we lose sight of the larger picture. Such is the case when tech media reported the Google-created mobile software leading iOS 46.9 percent versus 28.7 percent. In fact, a year-long review paints an entirely different scene – one that proves the old tale of the tortoise and the hare.
Thursday, ComScore released three-month figures showing Android held almost 47 percent of the U.S. smartphone market while Apple’s mobile platform grew a little over 1 point during the three-month period ending in November. The simplistic takeaway is that Google was still dominating in its ho-hum manner.
But if you look at month-to-month growth from January 2011 to November, you see Android’s growth rate actually slowing. For instance, in January, Android’s market share was growing at 20 percent. The next month, growth was hovering just above 5 percent. As Fortune points out, by November Android was growing its U.S. market by just 1.3 percent.
This is where the tortoise and hare analogy kicks in.
Apple started the year slowly in negative growth. However, by the end of ComScore’s reporting period, the iOS market growth climbed above Android’s – far from the “Android Crushing iOS” headlines.
Like the tortoise in that famous race, Apple has made slow, steady progress throughout the year. Incremental changes, such as improving supplies to alleviate retail shortages, as well as adding carriers all helped the tech giant’s domestic smartphone standings. Android, meanwhile, has suffered one court loss after another all with accompanied loss of public mindshare. Will 2012 be any different? We’ve heard much about Apple’s plans and little new from Google.