One in four Britons own an Android phone

With half of all Britons now owning a smartphone, Android now powers half of those sold. Where does it leave the other big-name mobile operating systems?
Written by Zack Whittaker, Contributor

New figures show that just under half of the UK's population owns a smartphone, with Android powering half of all smartphones sold, according to new marketshare figures released today by Kantar ComTech.

But instead of the mobile operating systems going head-to-head in marketshare war, the real battle is between which Android handset manufacturers have the most sales: HTC, Samsung, and Sony Ericsson.

(Source: Flickr, CC)

At 43.8 percent, nearly half of the British population own a smartphone, with 49.9 percent owning an Android powered smartphone. Research in Motion's BlackBerry marketshare accounted for 22.5 percent, with Apple's iPhone dropping from 33 percent a year ago to 18.5 percent this quarter.

Yet, only a few days after Nokia held its annual conference in London, the British public are week-on-week rejecting the Finnish manufacturer's phones, as Symbian scrapes just above 6 percent of sales, compared to 20 percent a year ago.

HTC mopped the floor with the other Android handset makers, holding its UK handset marketshare at 44.8 percent, with Samsung at 37.9 percent, up from last year, and Sony Ericsson holding out for leftovers.

Sony Ericsson, the joint venture by mobile giant Sony and telecoms firm Ericsson, which recently announced it would split after a 10-year pact, saw its mobile marketshare drop from 20.5 percent last year to 8.5 percent this quarter.

Samsung has yet to achieve the same levels of share as it has in the United States, with one in four U.S. smartphones owing to the Korean phone firm. Globally, Samsung remains the world's largest maker of smartphones.

In just 18 months, Android has achieved the most used mobile operating system in the UK at present, swallowing the Symbian platform all but completely, and forcefully pushing aside major players, like BlackBerry and Apple's iOS.

Growing exponentially since mid-2010, there has been a sharp rise from around 8 percent to 30 percent the following quarter, with iOS, Symbian and Windows Phone all tumbling in marketshare, with the exception of the BlackBerry operating system, which gained slightly.

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