Although there are some differences in the global number of active Android and Apple devices, both are increasing at an incredible rate.
There are almost twice as many global active Android devices as Apple devices, according to the latest numbers. Google’s operating system has continued to remain a hugely popular option over the years and, while Apple’s user base also continues to grow, it seems as though Android adoption is keeping up. In no small part thanks to the help from the varied number of partner device-makers and ever-increasing use cases.
In a little over ten years, the Android platform has grown considerably. This is not only in terms of the actual number of devices, but also in the variety of devices that Android now powers. While primarily launched as a mobile operating system on select phones, Android has gone on to power smartwatches, smart TVs, car infotainment systems, and so much more.
As part of a series of announcements made during the Google I/O 2021 developer conference, Google confirmed that the Android active device base now stands at more than three billion. The company did not provide any further indications of just how that number breaks down, but it is impressive nonetheless. Back in January of this year, Apple confirmed there were 1.65 billion active Apple devices at the time, with iPhone alone accounting for one billion.
Is Apple Catching Up?
Whether Apple is catching up to Android seems less important than the fact both operating systems are continuing to expand at an incredible rate. Furthermore, there is also the issue of updates on the two operating systems arriving at different times which makes direct comparisons at any given point all the more harder. However, some insight on their growth patterns can be seen in the previous announcements. For example, almost exactly a year before Apple announced the latest figure, the company confirmed 1.5 billion active devices, including 900,000 iPhones. In contrast, Google last provided a firm update back in 2019 when the figure stood at 2.5 billion. Prior to that, Google confirmed in 2017 that the number was two billion. Over the past four years, Google has essentially seen a half-billion increase every two years. Averaging roughly a quarter-billion each year, that’s slightly more than the increase Apple announced between 2020 and 2021.
However, Apple is doing much of this alone and that’s an important difference. With Android being as open as it is, the number of devices is able to increase at a much faster rate, thanks to the varied selection of partner companies that use the operating system. In contrast, Apple’s numbers are just for its own devices, making it all the more impressive as a single brand and company. Of course, with almost five billion devices between them, Android and Apple are both doing exceptionally well, and continuing to cement their dominance.
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