‘Unbeatable’ Android leads global smartphone market

Google’s mobile operating system, Android, continues to have an enormous lead over its rivals, with an 84% global market share in the third quarter of 2014, according to new statistics.

Figures released by market research firm, Strategy Analytics, show that a total of 268 million smartphones using Android were shipped in the quarter, compared to 206 million in the same period last year.

Android’s main rival, iOS on Apple’s popular iPhones, also saw increases, but nowhere near the level of Android smartphones. Global shipments of iPhones reached 39.3 million in the third quarter of this year, up from 33.8 million in Q3 of 2013, according to Strategy Analytics’ data.

Even with Apple shipping more iPhones, however, the US tech giant saw its market share fall overall, dropping from 13.4% to 12.3%. Strategy Analytics said this was likely due to a greater range of lower-cost Android smartphones available than the more expensive and high-end iPhones. The company also said that Android continues to be sought-after due to the operating system’s ease of use as well as its compatibility with the various smartphone makers. Its lead seems to be “unbeatable” at present, the company said.

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As for other smartphone operating systems, there were 10.5 million global shipments of Microsoft phones in the third quarter of this year. This is a slight rise on 10.3 million in the same period the year before, giving the Microsoft OS a 3.3% market share, a dip on 4.1% in Q3 last year.

Troubled BlackBerry – once the leader in the smartphone field – shipped just 2.3 million units in the third quarter, compared to 2.5 million in the same period in 2013. Its market share plummeted even further, to 0.7%, from 1% in the third quarter of last year.