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Android rules smartphone apps, iOS still tablet king

Posted: 06 Mar 2013     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:application downloads  mobile apps  smartphones  tablets 

Smartphone app downloads will continue to rise as the annual download volume is seen to reach 56 billion this year, according to ABI Research's Mobile Applications Research Service report.

Google Inc.'s Android platform will account for 58 per cent of the total market share, with Apple's iOS is commanding an annual share of 33 per cent. Microsoft's Windows Phone will finish the year with a slice of slightly smaller than 4 per cent, with BlackBerry trailing it with 3 per cent.

The market researcher predicts that mobile users will download around 14 billion tablet apps during the year. In the tablet segment, iPad's lead as a development platform remains formidable, as 75percent of the amount will be apps running on iOS. For comparison, Android will represent an annual share of 17 per cent, excluding Kindle Fire. Downloads to Amazon's tablets will warrant a market share of 4 per cent, while around 2 per cent of the total will be for Windows tablets.

With its vast installed base and the generally improved conditions for app building, ABI Research expects a growing number of smartphone-focused developers to adopt an Android-first strategy within the year. Senior analyst Aapo Markkanen, however, reminds, "Arguably the most pressing issue for Google is how much of this handset momentum will ultimately trickle down to tablets, where Apple is holding the fort remarkably well. We would argue that in this context Google will actually benefit from the efforts by Amazon, since the presence of Kindle Fire adds a lot of critical 'code mass' to Android's proposition as a platform for tablet applications. It is worth remembering that Android's so-called fragmentation problem isn't only a problem, but that it has a certain upside as well."

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