13
Mar
so many androids

Imagine, if you will, that every man, woman, and child in Europe owned an Android device. That still wouldn't account for every device that's been made, sold, and activated, according to the latest blog post from Google CEO Larry Page. In the same message that revealed Andy Rubin would be leaving his position as the head of Android development, Page mentioned almost in passing that Android had surpassed 750 million activated devices, including smartphones, tablets, and various other gadgets.

The pace of innovation has never been greater, and Android is the most used mobile operating system in the world: we have a global partnership of over 60 manufacturers; more than 750 million devices have been activated globally; and 25 billion apps have now been downloaded from Google Play. Pretty extraordinary progress for a decade’s work.

For a quick reminder of Android's continued rapid pace, we direct your attention to Eric Schmidt's update in September of last year, when he said that 480 million devices had been activated. Keep in mind that Google's measurements for "activated" were given as the number of devices that have been registered for use with a mobile carrier, use Google services, and have not been activated before.

That being said, the number of actual Android devices that have been sold and used is probably higher, since plenty of Android devices (notably those in China, hardware from OEMs like Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and non-phone gadgets like the OUYA) don't use Google's services or the Google Play Store. Tugging in the opposite direction is the fact that plenty of those activated devices are now out of service; with nearly five years of backlog, there are more than a few phones and tablets gathering dust in landfills or desk drawers.

But any way you slice it, there's a hell of a lot of Android hardware out there, and it's growing more quickly than anyone might have guessed way back in 2008. Here's to the little green robot that could.

Google Blog - Update from the CEO

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • Nex Unit

    But yet... developers STILL prefer iOS first for development... sad.

    • tanknspank

      All about keeping cost down and developing for as big of an audience as quickly as possible. Would you rather develop and test for a few devices or several hundred devices? Seems pretty cut and dry to me and I love Android.

      • Mike Reid

        Besides mass market, Android has some niche opportunities.

        As an independent dev with a hardware dependent niche my response to fragmentation is to focus on the most popular high end devices.

        A handful of Samsungs, and an HTC or two are probably not much more difficult than a handful of Apple devices.

        Android has IMO grown enough, and the popular phones have sold enough, that targeting mostly high end devices is feasible. High end users are, like Apple users, more likely to buy apps. Piracy ratio only 2-3:1 instead of 10:1 LOL.

      • Asphyx

        Well if that was true then Android would get all the development....

        Android now owns 48% of the Tablet market compared to iPad. It long ago overtook Apple in units sold and used on the phone side. Only reason why people say Apple sells the most units is because they don't lump Samsung, HTC, and theother Android manufacturers together into one group. If they did Apple would have less than half the market there too.

        If there is any difference as to why more development is done for Apple it is more likely because of it's dumber than hell UI that makes it easy to write games for one unit and have it work on all where in Android the hardware varies drastically and it's much easier to badly code for a locked in OS and hardware standard and hit hardware directly than it is to comply with androids varying and different HALs that are not controlled by Google but mostly hacked together by the Hardware manufacturers themselves.

        • http://twitter.com/snookasnoo Idon’t Know

          I don't know where you got that 48% number form but its ridiculous.

          • Nickan Fayyazi

            I guess you didn't read the article.

            "Keep in mind that Google's measurements for "activated" were given as the number of devices that have been registered for use with a mobile carrier, use Google services, and have not been activated before.

            That being said, the number of actual Android devices that have been sold and used is probably higher, since plenty of Android devices (notably those in China, hardware from OEMs like Amazonand Barnes & Noble, and non-phone gadgets like the OUYA) don't use Google's services or the Google Play Store."

    • Mark

      But they do target android first.

      Opera mobile beta coming soon on
      fxguru coming soon on
      shadowgun deadzone

      and so on. .... .

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1745689461 Hal Motley

        I would say a lot of mainstream developers would target iOS first and then release a botched Android version. EA and Gameloft are good examples because I used to play a lot of their games on iOS, but on Android they barely work the way I want them too. Plants VS Zombies demands lengthy updates and it's really annoying.

      • http://twitter.com/snookasnoo Idon’t Know

        Please...it's not even close...

  • Ben Murphy

    As a flashaholic, I have issues w/ this. This UID count does not take into account that many android roms will give you a new UID at every flash. For me, I would have about 10+ UIDs a week, were it not for the fact that I like honest stats and I use Titanium Backup to restore my device ID. Developers, however, may be too busy to deal with this, same could be said for other flashaholics. I love the market share android enjoys, and I can't get enough, but the unique activations statistics are WAY bloated.

    • Jack

      Not true!

      And why you creat account for this not true FUD one comment here? M$ PR FUD team..?

      Never flashing cound anyone second time!

      more than 750 mln = REAL more than 750 mln

      • http://twitter.com/snookasnoo Idon’t Know

        Android fanboys are far worse than iOS fanboys with comments like this.

    • Gvghbb

      you hardwareid is used that never changes

      • http://twitter.com/snookasnoo Idon’t Know

        Wrong.

        • Nickan Fayyazi

          What? Your hardware changes when you flash a ROM?

          iOS fanboys…

    • http://twitter.com/havens1515 Randroid

      "devices that have been registered for use with a mobile carrier, use Google services, and have not been activated before."

      Ever connected your device to your computer for development purposes? If you have, you'll notice that the computer identifies the hardware with a string of characters that never changes.

      I, also, am a flashaholic, but even when my UID changes, this hardware string doesn't. If they calculate the activation numbers based on this string (which I would assume a company as large as Google would be smart enough to do) then the number definitely IS accurate.

      • http://twitter.com/snookasnoo Idon’t Know

        They don't. They purposely count everything they can think of to pump up the numbers. As if sheer number of activations mean anything anyway. Its like hits on a web site. A near meaningless bit of data.
        Profit is what matters and the entire Android ecosystem is woefully short of profits.

        • Schiller Fan #1

          Hi Phil!

        • http://twitter.com/havens1515 Randroid

          Show me some proof, and I'll believe you. Until then, stop trolling.

  • chris2kari

    ...and almost all of them had outdated OS versions already at activation and will never see an update in the life if the device..