Android snags more than half of smartphone market

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Posted on Jan 8, 2013 by YuMe

It's been four months since Apple released the iPhone 5, and people are already talking about the maker's next smartphone model. One reason Apple is keen on buffing up glitches in the new product may be because of Google Android's domination over the smartphone market.

In a survey of more than 30,000 U.S. mobile subscribers, digital research firm comScore found that 53.7 percent of the smartphones on the market in the three-month period ending in November were Android-powered devices. Apple secured 35 percent of the market.

Winners and losers
According to ComScore, there were 123.3 million smartphone owners in the U.S. during the three-month period, up 6 percent since August. While Google Android and Apple saw market shares go up 1.1 percentage points and 0.7 percentage points respectively since August, Research in Motion's (RIM) hold on smartphone users went down 1 percentage point to 7.3 percent. These numbers were on cue with a series of mobile device predictions published by Forbes staff writer Parmy Olson last week.

Olson predicted Samsung to dominate among smartphone manufacturers. Meanwhile, RIM and Microsoft, which also saw a decrease in comScore's study, will likely struggle. RIM's upcoming BlackBerry 10 will largely determine the maker's fate this year.

Consumer behavior
More than half of mobile subscribers used their phones to download apps, and nearly the same percentage used their phone's browser. It's therefore important for mobile video ad producers to consider how their content transfers to a smartphone screen. In addition, more phone owners are using their phones to access social networking sites and blogs, comScore reported.

Ads on mobile will likely continue to morph and increase as the the number of smartphone users grow and the entertainment capabilities on phones increase. Another phenomenon forecasted by Olson is the continued rise of HTML5, which allows apps to run on mobile operating systems through a web browser.

The coding language will make a comeback in 2013 with the introduction of new operating systems, Tomer Kagan, CEO of mobile app search engine Quixery, said to Forbes. This could lead to the creation of more affordable smartphones.