updated 03:00 pm EDT, Thu April 23, 2009
AdMob Mar 2009 Phone Share
The use of the iPhone online has accelerated to where it's now outranking Symbian in terms of sheer traffic, AdMob's March 2009 metrics report shows. Tracking access worldwide based on ad requests, the firm says OS X iPhone grew to represent 38 percent of smartphone traffic and just slightly edged out all Symbian phones, which have fallen to 37 percent. Both are sharp changes from February, when Symbian held a comfortable lead at 43 percent while the iPhone had just crossed the 33 percent mark.
Other competitors remained largely flat in March or else declined slightly from their positions of a month earlier. RIM's BlackBerry OS was third with 11 percent, while Windows Mobile shrunk slightly to 6 percent. Google's Android has now tied Palm OS at 3 percent, and Danger's Hiptop OS for the T-Mobile Sidekick accounts for 2 percent.
In the US, market share is virtually unchanged and gives Apple exactly 50 percent of traffic where RIM gets 22 percent. Windows Mobile has 11 percent in its home arena, and both Android and Palm lay claim to 6 percent. Hiptop represents 4 percent while Symbian earns just a single percentage point.
When including non-phone devices like the iPod touch and looking at individual models, the iPhone and iPod touch are first and second place respectively. Internationally, the iPhone stands for 13.3 percent of all ad requests while the iPod touch represents 8.8 percent. That share expands in the US with exactly 17 percent of traffic going through iPhones and 12.1 percent through the iPod touch.
Other countries tend to split along expected lines as well. While the UK is one of the friendliest countries to Apple with iPhones and iPod touch devices taking up 25.4 percent and 21.6 percent respectively, other countries tend to be dominated by more established mobile platforms. Nearly all top devices in India, Indonesia and the Philippines are from Nokia; non-Apple devices in the UK are split between Nokia and Sony Ericsson, while South Africa is led by Samsung's handsets.
AdMob also took time to focus on the development of Android in the US over the past several months and noted that the iPhone (excluding the iPod) has grown significantly faster even in relation to its existing size. Over the 4 months of the App Store becoming available, iPhone units grew an average of 88 percent from month to month; the Android Market's availability grew by 47 percent over a similar span. Researchers also note that the iPhone by itself now has 8 times as much traffic as the Android-based G1; the difference surges to 23 times more when the iPod touch is included.
In spite of the difference, AdMob points out that T-Mobile's phone has 2 percent of US devices and that it's the fourth most important smartphone behind the iPhone, BlackBerry Curve and BlackBerry Pearl. Both the G1 and the iPhone are believed to have been spurred on by third-party apps, which now have a large share of AdMob's requests and have central app stores that until April didn't exist on BlackBerries and aren't yet live on Windows Mobile or competing platforms.