Apple Has 15.4 Percent of Smarphone OS Market, Up from 10.5 Percent in 2009



In a world where smartphones are increasingly more popular than standard cell phones, Apple and Android appear to be the names most on the move, new research indicates. Apple’s OS now powers 15.4 percent of global smartphones, while Google’s Android has 9.6 percent of the market, overtaking Microsoft Windows Mobile while increasing from last year’s 1.6 percent of smartphone operating systems used.

According to Gartner, global iPhone sales rose 112 percent for the first quarter of 2010, compared to 10.5 percent for the same period in 2009. Even in the larger cell phone market, the Cupertino, Calif. company places No.7 with 2.7 percent, behind Motorola by just three-tenths of one percent.

“Growth came partly from new communication service providers in established markets, such as the UK, and stronger sales in new markets such as China and South Korea,” Gartner’s Carolina Milanesi said Wednesday. “The second quarter will be a very important one for Apple. We expect that Apple will present its new iPhone in June during its Worldwide Developer Conference, which will be the first to feature the latest release of the iPhone OS that includes welcome improvements for developers and users, such as multitasking,” she added.

Apple and Android were the only two smartphone operating systems to report market share gains in the first quarter, compared to the same period a year ago. Market leader Symbian, for instance, shrank to 44.3 percent of the market, down from 48.8 percent during the same period in 2009. Second-place RIM also lost ground, falling to 19.4 percent of the OS market, down from 20.6 percent during the first quarter of last year, according to Gartner.

Compared to smartphone sales increasing by 48.7 percent to 54.3 million global units, the general cell phone market grew by only 17 percent to 314.7 million units, signaling what the analyst company described as the “strongest year-on-year increase since 2006.”

In related news Apple has 72 percent of the Japanese cell phone market, according to the Wall Street Journal.

[via Gartner, Fortune and WSJ]