Android smartphone sales reached a market share of 52.5 percent in the third quarter, according to market researchers Gartner. Some 60.5 million Android smartphones were sold worldwide, up from 20.5 million in the same period a year ago.
Android’s rivals didn’t fare as well. The hardest hit: Symbian’s operating system fell to a 16.9 percent market share from 36.3 percent in 2010′s third quarter. Even Apple’s iOS, which had a huge success with its iPhone 4 model in 2010, was down, logging a 15 percent market share, down from 16.6 a year ago. Others who gave up ground: RIM (at 11 percent) and Microsoft (at 0.9 percent). Surprisingly, Bada doubled its market share, reaching 2.2 percent.
Among vendors, Nokia retained the top smartphone sales spot during the quarter, but continued to bleed market share, according to Gartner’s numbers. The Finnish mobile maker fell to 23.9 percent, down from 28.2 percent in the same period in 2010. Samsung and Apple recorded improved market share: 17.8 percent for Samsung (up from 17.2 percent) and 3.9 percent for Apple( from 3.2 percent).
Although Android seems to be the biggest winner of 2011, it will be interesting to see what affect the new Nokia Windows phones and the iPhone 4S will the final numbers for 2011 come in.