Android's Vast Global Mobile Market Share Shrinks While iOS Continues to Grow

Android's vast global smartphone market dominance has shrunk slightly over the past four years while iOS has continued to increase its overall share, according to a new trend analysis.

market dominance of smartphone operating systems
Google's Android OS is the most widely used in the world, with smartphone makers of all kinds relying on the mobile operating system to power their devices. As such, it's no surprise that Android controls around two-thirds of the mobile market, but new data from StockApps suggests Google shouldn't take its pre-eminence for granted.

Android controlled 77.32% of the global OS market in July 2018. As of January 2022, four years later, that percentage had dropped to 69.74%. Meanwhile, over the same four-year period, global iOS adoption grew from 19.4% to 25.49%, a 6% increase. According to StockApp's analysis, the remaining 1.58% that Android lost went to other smaller scale OS developers.

The marginal shift in share in no way indicates that Android's dominance is under threat, but despite reports of disappointing iPhone SE sales, it's a positive sign for Apple that its broader strategy of diversifying its iPhone and iPad lineup is paying dividends in a highly competitive space.

StockApps' analysis also includes an interesting geographical breakdown of OS dominance. For instance, in Africa, where Apple devices are more prohibitively expensive, 84% of all smartphones run Android, while iOS accounts for roughly 14% of the continent's devices. It's a similar story in Asia and South America, where Android takes an 81% and 90% share, respectively. By contrast, iOS share is 18% in Asia and 10% in South America.

As expected, Apple's piece of the OS pie is more substantial in North America and Oceania, where it overtakes Google's share. iOS commands 54% of the market in both regions, while Android takes nearly 45%, suggesting that once customers pay the initial higher price of Apple's devices, the quality of its hardware, software, and user support tends to keep consumers within its ecosystem.

Top Rated Comments

Abazigal Avatar
4 weeks ago
We need more competition, even if you like iOS or Android. A whole market just shared by two players is not a healthy market. The 30% commission in the app stores makes that clear.
The market has spoken. Developers aren’t willing to support a third OS.

And I look at the gaming market, where every gaming console more or less charges the standard 30%, so I am not sure what exactly competition is supposed to fix. I personally feel that Apple is justified in collecting 30% given the role its App Store has played in growing the overall pie and in facilitating transactions (leading to more people purchasing apps than they otherwise would have).

It’s a good day to be an Apple user, especially one who has chosen to embrace the Apple ecosystem in its entirety. [emoji4]
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alphaswift Avatar
4 weeks ago
I miss Windows Phone. So many great features.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Unggoy Murderer Avatar
4 weeks ago

We need more competition, even if you like iOS or Android. A whole market just shared by two players is not a healthy market. The 30% commission in the app stores makes that clear.
Hi Tim Sweeney! ?
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
System603 Avatar
4 weeks ago
It's sad to see that there are only two real* competitors.


edit:
*I don't really consider Android's Vanilla vs Samsung One vs MIUI vs ... as a true competition unlike "old times" of iOS vs Android vs Windows Phone vs webOS vs ... with all the constant one-upmanship. But I guess it comes with the maturity of the platforms plus the immense costs of keeping up both technically and adoption/app-wise.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Unggoy Murderer Avatar
4 weeks ago

It's sad to see that there are only two real* competitors. [...]
Yup, it was a sad day when Microsoft gave up on Windows Phone. While I didn't own any of the handsets, things seemed to work well. Features that never really came to light (notably Continuum) would have been really brilliant.

RIM's Blackberry OS 10 also had some really nice features, but alas, was snuffed out by the relentless march of Android and iOS.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
toke lahti Avatar
4 weeks ago
4% drop in iOS in last TWO MONTHS and this is not even mentioned?
w00t?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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