Ice Cream Sandwich now runs 25% of Android phones, as Google's mobile platform holds its strong lead in smartphone market share.
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The two newest versions of Android continue to steal market share from earlier renditions of the Google smartphone platform. In the last month, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich climbed from 23.7% of all Android devices to 25.8%. Google can now officially say that the year-old operating system is installed on one-quarter of Android smartphones.
Android 2.3 Gingerbread still accounts for the lion's share of Android, and is installed on 54.1% of devices. Android 4.0 will slowly steal Gingerbread's market share, however, as more and more devices are updated to 4.0. In fact, I'll be surprised if Gingerbread's numbers don't dip below 50% by December.
The newest version of Android, Jelly Bean, made modest gains and improved from 1.8% to 2.7% of the Android market. Jelly Bean is still only available on a handful of devices, including the Galaxy Nexus, Nexus S and Nexus 7.
Jelly Bean should see a huge jump in adoption by this time next month, though.
Three new Nexus devices go on sale later this month, all of which are running Jelly Bean. They are the LG-made Nexus 4, the Asus-made Nexus 7 and the Samsung-made Nexus 10. Each will ship with Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, which adds several features including Photo Sphere and continuous text input on the keyboard. Given the appeal of Nexus devices, which run clean versions of Android with no carrier or manufacturer software, sales will surely be brisk.
Brisk sales are nothing new to the Android platform.
Android smartphones accounted for 75% of all smartphone sales during the third quarter of 2012, according to analyst firm IDC. Its numbers show that Android accounted for 136 million of 181 million smartphones sold in Q3, giving it a 91.5% year-over-year growth rate.
Sales of Apple's iPhone stood at 26.9 million for the third quarter, giving it about 14.9% of the smartphone market. That's one-fifth of Android's numbers for the third quarter.
RIM sold 7.7 million BlackBerrys, giving it 4.3% of the smartphone market. Nokia's Symbian device sales added up to 4.1 million, or 2.3% of the market. And Microsoft sold a combined 3.6 million Windows Mobile / Windows Phone devices, giving it 2.0% of the smartphone market.
To put it another way, Android and iOS added up to 90% of all smartphone sales for the third quarter. Any hardware maker not selling Android or iOS devices during the fourth quarter is going to have a rough holiday season.
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