Global market share held by smartphone operating systems from 2009 to 2014

This statistic shows the global market share held by smartphone operating systems each year from 2009 to 2014. Symbian had a market share of 46.9 percent in 2009. In the first quarter of 2012, 56.1 percent of all smartphones sold to end users were phones with the Android operating system. In 2010, 296.65 million smartphones were sold worldwide.

Smartphone operating systems market - additional information

The operating system, also known as an OS, transmits user commands to all other programs and applications. It also controls the peripheral devices, such as printers or cameras. A mobile OS operates on hand-held devices, such as mobile phones, smartphones, tablets or smart watches. While OS themselves are usually available for free and are already installed on the device, the additional programs and apps are tailored specifically for each system.

As of 2014, the main players on the smartphone OS market are Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS. Other smartphone operating systems on the market include Microsoft’s Windows Phone and Blackberry’s RIM to a lesser extent. Symbian, which was used extensively on mobile phones and early generations of smartphones by leading manufacturers, such as Samsung, LG, Motorola and most notably Nokia, was a dominant player on the market in 2009 and 2010. Due to the growing popularity of Android, which most major smartphone manufacturers adopted as their OS of choice, and Nokia’s partnership with Windows Phone, which began in 2011, Symbian was effectively pushed off the market in 2014.

Google’s Android leads the global market with an 80 percent market share, while Apple’s iOS is second, with 15 percent. There are stark differences between regional markets; in the United States for example, the market is almost equally divided between Android and iOS.

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