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Verizon iPhone Surge Yields First Slip in Android U.S. Sales Share in Two Years


Market research firm NPD today announced the results of its "Mobile Phone Track" survey for the first quarter of 2011, covering U.S. mobile phone sales. According to the study, Apple rode the strength of the CDMA iPhone launch on Verizon to eat into Android's share of the smartphone market for the first time since the second quarter of 2009. Android does, however, continue to hold a strong lead in market share.

The Android OS lost ground for the first time since Q2 2009, falling to 50 percent of smartphone unit sales in Q1 2011 compared to 53 percent in the prior quarter. Apple iOS share rose 9 percentage points to comprise 28 percent of smartphone unit sales. BlackBerry OS also lost ground, falling 5 points, to 14 percent.

The iPhone surge comes even as Apple has reportedly sliced CDMA iPhone 4 production to half of its initial 2011 projections.

Looking at all mobile phones, Apple ranked third among manufacturers with 14% of the market, behind Samsung at 23% and LG at 18%. And with continued strong growth from the iPhone and Android, smartphones for the first time represented the majority of U.S. mobile phone sales at 54%.

Apple's iPhone 4 ranked as the top-selling mobile phone in the U.S. during the quarter, and perhaps most surprisingly, the iPhone 3GS took second place in the rankings. Despite essentially being a nearly two-year-old device, the iPhone 3GS almost certainly received a strong boost during the first quarter after AT&T and Apple dropped the price to $49 on a two-year contract. The iPhone 3GS is not available on Verizon.

Related roundups: iPhone 5c, iPhone 5s, iPhone 6

Top Rated Comments

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39 months ago

So the iPhone went from being pummeled by Android to now just being badly beaten.

That is Awesome.


the iPhone doesn't compete against Android. The iPhone competes against all of the handsets running Android. And it's killing them. The 3GS as the second best-selling handset? That's frankly embarrassing for Android.

So tell me, in what world is having:
1 - the most popular handset
2 - the 2nd most popular handset
3 - the most popular mobile OS
4 - the most popular tablet
getting "badly beaten"?
Rating: 9 Positives
39 months ago

So the iPhone went from being pummeled by Android to now just being badly beaten.

That is Awesome.


Why do you keep comparing a single phone model to an entire platform used on 20 some devices?

Oh... that's right... it's all you can hang your hat on. Sorry... let's talk pummeled or badly beaten when any single Android phone outsells the iPhone.
Rating: 8 Positives
39 months ago
Anyone else find these stories on market share to be completely boring?!?

Can MacRumors setup a Page 3 section to put these on and keep the interesting rumors on the first page (new Macs, new iOS, etc)?

Until Apple announces they are stopping production of the iPhone due to low sales.....I don't care who sells the most. :rolleyes:

-Kevin
Rating: 7 Positives
39 months ago

So the iPhone went from being pummeled by Android to now just being badly beaten.

That is Awesome.


No even if Android marketshare is bigger iPhone is STILL the winner. Two handsets verses 90+ Android handsets and Apple still holds its own. That should tell you something but I'm sure it doesn't.

Why I reply to you I'll never know since everyone knows what you are.
Rating: 5 Positives
39 months ago
THere are two articles on the home page right now: one about Verizon iPhones not selling as well as thought, and one on the Verizon iPhone surge causing Android US market share to slip.

So the news is that they are simultaneously doing better and worse than anticipated?
Rating: 5 Positives
39 months ago
This is the important part:

Apple's iPhone 4 ranked as the top-selling mobile phone in the U.S. during the quarter, and perhaps most surprisingly, the iPhone 3GS took second place in the rankings. Despite essentially being a nearly two-year-old device . . .

That speaks volumes.
Rating: 4 Positives
39 months ago

How do you "win" a platform war?

Does Google win because they have so many devices running their Android OS? *Marketshare*

Or does Apple win because you have to buy their hardware in order to get iOS? *Profit*

Or can we just agree that both platforms are doing insanely well in their respective ways?


Heck, I'd go so far as to say, "Both platforms are doing insanely well." Period. Dead stop. End of sentence.

I've never understood the mindset that things for one group to do well everyone else must do poorly. How about the expression, "A rising tide lifts all boats."
Rating: 4 Positives
39 months ago
Not surprising the iPhone 3GS was #2.

This is the real data. How are the actual phones selling... That is why when people try to convolute Android vs iOS on phones only it is silly.

Apple is dominating the smartphone markets with their individual products. Opening up to Verizon has taken away one of Android's advantages in the US.

All 4 iPhones are in the Top 10 of smartphones sold since the iPhone came out. In fact they are probably all in the top 6 or 7.
Rating: 4 Positives
39 months ago
I'm honestly surprised by a lot of you. The whole "no single android phone outsells the iPhone!" argument, is foolish and weak. It's a platform war. You basically get ONE CHOICE with the iPhone. Now it's a great choice, but of course it's going to be a top seller as a result. There are so many good Android choices out there that a single model isn't going to dwarf the others. Since there are, you know, options? As a platform it seems iOS is getting whooped on. Does that not register, or are people that much in denial?

Now myself, I like my iPhone, but come on...in this case we are talking about platforms...So weird...
Rating: 3 Positives
39 months ago
I think it's pretty clear now that we won't really know what "the iPhone comes to Verizon" fully means until next year. Too many variables to learn anything quickly.
Rating: 3 Positives

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