Android: 900,000 activations daily -- what that means

Android: 900,000 activations daily -- what that means

Summary: Head Android Andy Rubin responded to a rumor he is leaving Google, and couldn't resist throwing out the latest impressive figure of Android activations.

TOPICS: Android

The Android juggernaut continues to chug unstoppably, based on a statement by Andy Rubin over the weekend. Rubin stated that 900,000 Android phones are activated every day, a staggering number. What does he mean by activation? He defined it late last year on Google +:

That makes the new daily figure even more impressive, as it means there is wireless service activated for each phone counted. Rubin's statement rules out updates to the OS counting as a new activation. Android is getting close to the magic million a day mark.

Rubin's statement came in response to a published rumor that he is about to leave Google for a new startup. He quickly dashed the rumor on Google + and couldn't resist adding about the new activation level for Android.

While there is a never-ending debate in the mobile space about whether a company's reported numbers represent sales or shipments, Google's unique use of activations is a clear indicator of platform growth. The previous figure given by Rubin was 850,000 activations/day back in February of this year.

Activating an Android phone means someone got a new phone, and entered into an agreement with a carrier of some type to get service. Rubin has previously stated that the number includes tablets, which may not count Wi-Fi only models given a lack of service provider. Given the relatively low sales of Android tablets, that may not be a factor.

Topic: Android

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  • You just couldn't help yourself

    "Given the relatively low sales of Android tablets"

    Give it a rest James.

    To answer your question what does it mean?
    It means Zdnet and or James will have to do a better spin job.
    • Or it means that the large majority of activations

      are on phones. Though I would really like to see what % is on cheap to free phones vs higher end model, not just lumped together overall numbers

      This would give a better understanding as to who those numbers given in the article are attributed to.
      William Farrel
    • Hmmmm

      Funny how he claims low sales but can't back it up. Great jounalism. Huh?
  • Pre-Munchkinned

    Google is doomed. Apple too. The Microsoft juggernaut, fast and fluid, shall rise like a tsunami, destroying everything in its path. Soon Microoft and Nokia, holding hands, will dance under the rainbow while the birds sing.
    Robert Hahn
    • BS!

      Apple and M$ are sinking while android is the people's choice by a large margin!
      The Linux Geek
      • The people's choice, indeed!

        it shows that people will use whatever is given them as long as it's on the free phones!

        Sad, if you think about it.
        William Farrel
      • You're the one with BS

        Look at Apple's stock..I dont' see anything sinking do you?
      • The people's choice, indeed!

        @william farrel: The same could be said of the millions/billions of PCs with pre-installed Windows.
        Thanks for pointing out 99% of consumers don't choose Windows, it's just the OS that was installed on the cheapest PC in the store.
      • Interesting

        As this article does not address activations of iOS or WP7 devices.

        Weren't YOU the same one who claimed that this would be the year of Linux? As was 2011, 2010, ect. And the ONLY reason Android is such a large "choice" is due to the availability of free and cheap Android devices which do not measure up to any iOS or WP7 device... the more expensive ones however give the iOS and WP7 devices a run for their money.

        As someone else mentioned I'd love to see a figure on the number of activations of the cheap or free Android devices vs the higher end Android devices... such a figure would prove if the theory of Android's dominance is due to the cheap and free devices is true.
      • Ya

        Give it a rest. Little Geek. Just remember, you buy an Android and Google profits. Not your buddies in the open source community.
      • Errrr

        @anothercanuck : "Thanks for pointing out 99% of consumers don't choose Windows, it's just the OS that was installed on the cheapest PC in the store." - Well if your grand ma or grand pa could user correctly, I'd be surprised. They don't like Windows, wipe it off? A PC brand doesn't sell with Linux? Boycott them. Oh, anmd where did you get that 99% figure from? Top of your head [again]?
  • "the relatively low sales of Android tablets"

    Given that Samsung has sold well over 7 million Galaxy Note phoneblets, "the relatively low sales of Android tablets" are much less of an issue than one might suppose. When you consider that the Note sports a 1280 x 800 screen and that 1280 x 800 is the same resolution as the vast majority of 10" Android tablets, I fully expect developers to start filling the void of tablet optimized Android apps much faster than originally anticipated.
    • That relative figure

      is in comparison to the sales of the iPads. So yes the "relatively low sales of Android tablets" is quite applicable.
  • 10" tablet

    I still think the 10" tablet is in general a relatively niche, impractical, "luxury" item to the average joe. Apple was just in the perfect position to make such a device a success within a certain group of consumers. I think its simply not possible for a typical 10" non-ipad tablet to be a huge success. We will see this with windows RT tablets as well.
    The android based "tablet" success is and will continue to be in the 5-7 in range, as we have seen with the fire and the note. Unless apple comes out with a 7", which might put a wrench in that.
    • Agreed

      10" is simply too big.
      x I'm tc
    • I have to agree

      based on my experience with a borrowed iPad and my rooted Nook Color.
    • Wrong

      I have a 10 inch Android and love it. My spouse has the 7 inch and it is not the same tablet experience. I picked it up and put it down. If Apple has only 61% down from 100% since when they debuted they were practically the only game in town it stands to reason Android is at least 38% of the market. Do the math. iPhone share is less than that at 27%.
  • It's just like having a car....

    If I go to the lot and there's different kinds of cars, each one is going to do the same thing but some you have to pay more for to do it better...

    For example:

    1. If you want an iPhone/iPad, it's like getting a BMW, it's sleek, it's fast, it is expensive, it has elegance, class, and it's more of a status symbol than anything, gets you from point A to B in style.

    2. If you want an Android phone/tablet, it's like buying a Honda's cheap, it gets the job done, if it breaks you don't have to worry about losing the farm over it, everyone has one so you fit in like the average Joe.

    3. If you want a Windows Phone it's like buying a's cheap, it will eventually get you where you want to go, but you only ride it at night because you're embarrassed everyone else will see you riding it and laugh at you.
    • it is a matter of debate

      iPhone/iPad is not like getting a BMW. It is more like getting top of the line Huydai Sonata. It is underpowered and overpriced. There are better options around but you just like the shiny look of it and really believe in TV ads. The rest is just a peer pressure. You will get over it,,,, eventually.
      • Oh, let me rush out and get a cheap Windows/Android device

        Outdated in 12 months or less.

        Yes, let's all adopt your lame philosophy.