Apple iOS gains on Google Android in mobile OS race

Apple iOS gains on Google Android in mobile OS race

Summary: Android is still in the lead, but with the arrival of the new iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s, Apple's iOS narrowed the gap.


Correction: A previous version of this story misstated share variations as percentages, not percentage points. The story has been updated to reflect this.

comScore's latest quarterly surveys for the U.S. mobile phone wars are out for the summer months. While Google's Android operating system still leads the pack with 51.6 percent of the platform market share, Apple moved up to 40.7 percent, even before the sensational September sales of its iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s.

comScore Mobile OS Aug. 2013

Apple's iOS's gains came at the expense of Android, which saw its market share decrease from 52.4 percent to 51.6 percent, and the beleaguered BlackBerry, which also lost 0.8 percentage points. Blackberry now holds a mere 4 percent of the overall market. Microsoft, with Windows Phone 8, crept up by 0.2 percentage points to a 3.2 percent share.

As for smartphone brands, Apple remains on top, with 40.7 percent of the US OEM market. Samsung stays in second place, with 24.3 percent. The other major smartphone vendors, HTC, Motorola, and LG, either lost market share or stayed level, well behind the two leading smartphone vendors.

With the number of smartphone owners in the US now topping 145 million, users increasingly rely on their mobile devices for their internet access. This brings the total smartphone market penetration to 60.8 percent in August, up 3 percent since May.

Once on the internet with their smartphones, 92.2 percent of users visit Google sites, followed by Facebook, at 84.6 percent; somewhat surprisingly, 83.2 percent visit Yahoo sites; and 68.6 percent go to Amazon sites. This mirrors overall US internet use, where Google, followed by Facebook, are the top two contenders.

When it comes to internet-based apps, the story is slightly different. By comScore's count, Facebook ranked as the top smartphone app, with 75.7 percent of the app audience. This was followed by five Google-owned apps: Google Search, at 53.9 percent; Google Play, at 53.2 percent; YouTube, at 52.8 percent; Google Maps, at 46.1 percent; and Gmail, at 44.3 percent.

Corrected on October 7 at 9am EDT.

Related stories:

Topics: Mobility, Android, Apple, Google, iPhone, Mobile OS, Samsung, Smartphones

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  • Apple iOS gains on Google Android in mobile OS race

    The linux based android is dropping like flies and the Microsoft Windows Phone OS continues to gain market share quarter after quarter. Let android and iOS fight it out while Microsoft Windows Phone sneaks up behind both of them and steals the market.
    • Wow.

      I have a Windows Phone, I'm a big fan of the platform and I'm only to happy to recommend it to people (with all the obvious caveats), but even I think that is a heroically optimistic reading of these figures.
    • Up .2 percent in three months... that rate, Microsoft hits 10% in about eight and a half years. I don't think Google and Apple are all that worried yet.
    • Mr. Davidson: "The linux based android is dropping like flies"

      Translation -> Android devices are falling from the sky into the open hands of consumers.
      Rabid Howler Monkey
      • 1 Billion served

        1 billion Androids at 1.7 million a day.

        Android rules
        Some Internet Dude
        • At that rate, there must be some 20 billion Android devices

          in people's hands by now.
    • Win phone

      keep dreaming even blackberry has Win phone beat.
      Some Internet Dude
      • For possibly one more quarter...

        ...but after that there will only be 3 major mobile OSs left.
    • Android

      As long as Android keeps losing marketshare, I'm happy.
      Dreyer Smit
    • Windows Phone going nowhere fast

      While the world waits for a try Linux open platform, it settles for Android (with Google trademarked license terms) while iOS continue to dominate. Windows will find it hard to crack this market because people are bored of Windows and MS.
      • IOS dominates??

        Wow, so even after the article said IOS only has 40%, and Android has 51.6% somehow your lousy math came up with that? Not only does Android have the lead, but over all world wide, Android has 78%, and IOS has a mere 18%. So much for domination.
        A. Noid
      • No one is "waiting" for a Linux phone`

        People use Android because it is good, not because it is Linux. The average iPhone user couldn't even tell you what OS is on their phone - the codebase behind OSes do not matter to end users, much as all of us here might geek out about them.
        • True

          Most correct statement so far, most users don't really care what OS is on their phones as long as it works and runs "the apps they want". That's all users really want. We here obviously understand that the bigger the install base is for an OS, the more lucrative the market is for developers, thus more apps. With Apple's long headstart and Android gaining share by leaps and bounds, the developers know who the big players are.

          As much as I hate seeing competition die off as it leads to monopolization of the market, nobody wants to board a sinking ship. Windows and Blackberry better step up their platforms and make them much more attractive for developers. Developers create the ecosystem of apps that consumers want. If you build them, they will come.
          • Windows Phone

            Unfortunately today it's the developers and yes even crappy Google that dictate what marketshare smartphones obtain. Google for instance has made every attempt possible to sabotage Win8 with their stupid stance on exchange and then blocking Google Maps only for Win8 users, then blocking the YouTube app they insisted be fixed that they actually "approved" for Win8 phones. I have a Win8 phone and I don't see anything wrong with it. There are some apps missing but I'm not that chained to most apps, and the FB and Twitter apps work... I don't "have" to vine or instagram and I don't play games on a 4" screen. I think they need to get over it and start ignoring millions of Win phone users. There are millions and it's very bad business sense to ignore a potential market of millions. It's a fast and dependable platform and very intuitive. I also have Siri like voice commands and email/text dictation without having to buy into Siri and a contract. My phone was inexpensive unlocked and purchased outright.
          • Oops!

            I meant "stop" ignoring millions of users! Lol can't edit.. :/
          • Re: Unfortunately today it's the developers

            Who else you think should dictate the market share?

            Mary Poppins perhaps?
    • Sneak up form behind

      At this rate Windows Phone ail be sneaking up from behind for the next 20 years.
    • Ballmer????

      To be honest I didn't even see the Window phone on this chart at first, which is probably a pretty good metaphor for how it is doing in the real world. Ya, it is there but hardly anyone notices because they are too busy buying Apple and Android phones and with good cuase.

      Besides a few fan-boys or bargain bin hunters who would by a phone with no software. That is the core of the problem, the Win phones are nice but offer nothing over Android and Apple but do have many draw backs when compared. It just makes no sense to buy one.
    • Yes, MS usually does "sneak" very well - a little TOO well in this case

      In this case, a rise of .2% to 3.2% after a whole year of heroic efforts at advertising is a little too sneaky even for them.

      But it's ok, the US market is a distortion of the much bigger worldwide market anyway. MS and Android are both doing better there.
    • Like flies?

      Like flies? Really? it's lost less than apple has gained. Or to put it bluntly, Apple has gained because it's eaten in to Blackberry, Symbian's share more than than it's touched Android.

      So, when you say dropping like flies all it does is to paint you as someone that has some moronic favour for a mobile phone operating system / vendor. It's a device, not a religion.