Android Jumps Past iPhone in U.S. Mobile Web Use

Android is still lagging behind the iPhone in marketshare, with only 9% market penetration in the U.S. (iPhone is around 25%). But according to new numbers from online ad giant AdMob, Android actually passed the iPhone in mobile Web use this month.

This is all U.S.-only--internationally, the iPhone is much better established than Android. But here in the States, Android accounted for 46% of online mobile traffic, compared with Apple's 39%. The other players, by the way, don't even enter the picture. RIM's BlackBerry phones are in third place, with 7%, and Palm's struggling WebOS only eked out 3% despite a recent Verizon launch.

AdMob goes even further and separates out the individual devices using both Android and iPhone OS. Motorola's blockbuster Droid snagged 32% of the Android traffic, followed by the older HTC Hero. Embarrassingly, Google's own Nexus One managed only 2% of U.S. Android traffic--that might be the stat that allows us to say definitively that the Nexus One has officially bombed.

As far as iPhone OS, the aging iPhone 3GS had 39% of its OS's traffic, followed by the 2nd-gen iPod Touch at 25% and the iPhone 3G at 20%.

This is great news for Android, and more specifically Google--while it may not have as many users as the iPhone, those users are highly active mobile Internet users. Google, which owns AdMob (these numbers are independent, however), is in a position to capitalize on these active users.

Dan Nosowitz, the author of this post, can be followed on Twitter, corresponded with via email, and stalked in San Francisco (no link for that one--you'll have to do the legwork yourself).

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  • Peter Mortensen

    It would be worth noting that AdMob's methodology is based on websites and apps that carry their ads, which is not the whole of mobile web traffic. Quattro Wireless (owned by Apple) does a lot of mobile ad serving, and they're not included, I don't believe. Moreover, Apple's coming iAd platform (a key part of iPhone OS 4.0) would not be counted in this, so you can expect to see Apple continue to fall in these metrics, but for increasingly inaccurate reasons.

    For disclosure reasons, it would be a good idea to mention that Google owns AdMob. I'm sure they're not manipulating the stats, but it's a caveat people should know.