Android smartphones from all manufacturers make up nearly 80 percent of all smartphones recently sold worldwide, but Apple's iPhone and iPad still dominate when it comes to Web browsing in the U.S. and other highly developed countries.
In the U.S., about 62 percent of all mobile Web browsing in the last year came from iOS smartphones and tablets, according to dotMobi, a Web consulting and Web data measurement firm. The company measured billions of Web sites visited by smartphones and tablets in 101 countries, including the most developed ones.
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Overall, iOS devices were used most often for browsing in 34 of the 101 countries measured; Android dominated in 67 nations.
The percentage of mobile users browsing the Web with iOS devices was higher in several nations than in the U.S. In the UK and France, that figure was 65 percent; in Japan, 68 percent; in Canada, 73 percent; and in Australia, 74 percent.
Meanwhile, Android smartphones and tablets are used more often for browsing in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe, including Spain (56 percent) and Germany and India (both at 58 percent). Macedonia was strongest for Android usage, at nearly 91 percent, while South Korea -- home of big Android device maker Samsung -- had 74 percent of users browsing with Android.
Eileen O'Sullivan, the chief operating officer of dotMobi, said that Apple still maintains a stronghold across major markets in the world, but added, "its dominance is not guaranteed." She said that while Apple is still considered an "aspirational brand," its relatively high prices compared to Android smartphones and tablets could cost it market share in the countries where it leads.
All of dotMobi's data is freely available on the Web, but users must register to see it.
The company provides maps that rank browsing by OS, even a specific device, and clicking on a country will show the percentage of use for that device in that country. For the U.S., Apple's 62 percent share of Web browsing by iPhone and iPad compares to about 19 percent for Samsung devices and less than 4 percent each for Motorola, LG HTC, BlackBerry, Nokia and others.
In China, nearly 49.5 percent of Web browsing is done via iOS devices, with the remainder shared by Android devices from various brands, including Samsung (11 percent), HTC (9 percent), Huawei (6 percent) and Lenovo (3 percent).
Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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