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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Apple Beats Android in Mobile Browsing, not Market Share

Steve Jobs ipad2

This one should be simple math at first glance: Android owns 48 percent of the global market share for smartphones, so it should be right around there for total Web use as well, correct? By that, we mean the sheer percentage of traffic that Android-based devices send to all sorts of sites around the Web.

In actuality, Android devices send around 16 percent of traffic to websites measured as a part of Net Applications' grand survey. And it's Apple's iOS that takes the cake: Although the company's iOS-based smartphones only achieved a 19 percent market share in the second quarter of the year, iOS devices in total (tablets, iPod Touches, and smartphones) deliver 54.65 percent of the Web traffic to the approximately 40,000 websites measured by Net Applications.

In fact, the figure is a new record for Apple. But, according to Fortune's Philip Elmer-Dewitt, the number should come as little surprise: Apple's iOS enjoys healthy user support in the smartphone and tablet market, and gains the benefit of a bonus category from the less-connected iPod Touch. Android, by contrast, only really has smartphone devices to count on: It's not as if Android tablets don't exist, but they don't enjoy as healthy of a market share (or can count on a dominant, flagship device) like Apple's iPad line.

Looking at the rest of the figures, devices running the Linux-based Symbian operating system (now discontinued) deliver around 6 percent of the total Web traffic measured by Net Applications. Blackberry smartphones and tablets push around 3.3 percent of traffic, with Windows mobile devices offering up scraps at roughly 0.3 percent.

On the desktop side, Net Applications' survey noted that Apple's Safari browser jumped over the five-percent figure for global browser usage for the first time ever. Internet Explorer still leads the category at 54 percent, with Mozilla coming in second place at 22 percent and Chrome, third, at 16 percent.


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