For the first time, sales of Android based devices here in the US were greater than iPhone sales during a given quarter. According to data released earlier today by the NPD group, Android sales during the 1Q of 2010 represented 28% of all smartphone sales while iPhone sales represented 21%. Leading the pack, as usual, whose lineup of Blackberry devices accounted for 36% of all smartphone sales in the US from January to March of 2010.
As a quick aside, this news just goes to highlight the absurdity of the report that the Department of Justice and the FTC have their anti-trust eyes set on Apple in the wake of its new developer agreement which forbids iPhone apps entry into iTunes if they were created with cross-platform development tools.
But back to the latest data from NPD.
The report attributes the rise in Android sales, in part, to Verizon’s “buy-one-get-one” offer that it recently expanded to include all devices under its banner. Initially, the buy one get one free deal only applied to Blackberry devices.
Still, iPhone sales continue to do well, though there is no denying that Apple will eventually have to open up the device to other carriers here in the US if it wants to remain competitive. The iPhone has been a great boon for AT&T and is responsible for millions of new AT&T subscribers – but the fact remains that AT&T, for a number of reasons, simply isn’t a viable option for millions of smartphone users in the US. Apple has been riding the AT&T train for almost 3 years, but with strong competition now emerging in the form of Android, Apple has to be eyeing Verizon with ever widening eyes these days.
As a point of interest, NPD found that during the 1Q of 2010, AT&T comprised 32% of all smartphone sales, followed by Verizon Wireless with 30%, T-Mobile with 17%, and poor ole’ Sprint is lagging behind with a paltry 15%.