Android on Steroids
2009 is going to be a banner year for Google’s Android mobile operating system. Strategy Analytics estimates shipments of handsets running the OS will grow 900 percent this year as more vendors adopt it. At that rate, it will far outpace the growth of Apple’s iPhone, whose shipments the company expects to increase just 79 percent in 2009.
“Android has fast been winning healthy support among operators, vendors and developers,” said Strategy Analytics director Neil Mawston. “A relatively low-cost licensing model, its semi-open-source structure and Google’s support for cloud services have encouraged companies such as HTC, Motorola, Samsung, T Mobile, Vodafone and others to support the Android operating system. Android is now in a good position to become a top-tier player in smartphones over the next two to three years.”
If that comes it pass, it’s bad news for Palm (PALM) whose Pre handset and WebOS will be facing off against a powerful mobile triumvirate: Apple (AAPL), Research in Motion (RIMM) and Google (GOOG).