By Rachael Everly
It seems today that mobile is becoming more important than desktops for internet and applications. Last year’s stats from the industry revealed that mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, for the first time ever, exceeded in traffic than from desktops. The data put out by StatCounter showed that mobile devices accounted for 51.3% of the internet use while desktops comprised of 48.7 percentage of that usage.
Right after the disclosure of these stats, content filled with advice regarding the sheer importance of websites being mobile friendly proliferated the digital sphere. Justified claims were made that mature markets of the developed world like the U.S and UK still employ desktops as their main mode of internet use and that it’s the developing countries that contribute to most of the mobile traffic, as access to mobile there is easier and makes more sense due to the availability of cheap devices and services, and a lack of a need for a bigger device.
Hence, further evidence that did not come off as a surprise is the news of Google’s Android surpassing Windows as the most common and popular operating system for internet access. Yesterday, the same research plus web analytics firm established the fact.
Android’s usage of the internet was 37.93% while the internet usage coming from Windows was 37.91%. While this might be a tiny difference, it signifies a notable shift that was anticipated to happen and which will doubtlessly increase over the months.
Stat counter bases its findings on 2.5 million websites which create more than 15 billion page views in a month. The company tracked over a long period of time the usage traffic coming from the two operating systems. One of the factors that contribute to the high amount of internet traffic coming from android devices is the failure of Window’s phones in the market. As mobiles are the most popular platform for most internet usage, it only makes sense that a mobile operating system would eventually cross the usage mark made by a system that operates on a more stationary device.
However, what makes android so much more popular than other mobile operating systems like iOS is largely because of the cheap smartphones that it’s installed in. Although it’s interesting to note that for Apple’s operating system exclusively, its mobile phone users have managed to beat their desktop users by almost three times in internet usage last month, according to StatCounter.
Additionally, while Windows does dominate the desktop landscape, the global sales for personal computers have declined over the last five years while mobile phones sales have skyrocketed and Android holds the most share of it. The highest growth comes from countries on an economic rise like India, Indonesia, and China, which has now become the most lucrative market for iOS apps in the world.
The popularity of mobile in these regions have caused a shift in the international revenues of developers along with a change in an app’s legal environment and cultural needs.
An earlier report by App Annie found that iOS apps were downloaded 25 billion times in the previous year out of a total of 90 billion downloads, the rest of which are attributed to Android. However, from the $35 billion paid to publishers across iOS and Android App Stores, the majority went to iOS.
That too, however, is also predicted to change fast, due to Androids steep incline in the developing world and App Annie sees that this year the app earnings for Android are bound to leave behind iOS’s earnings for the first time. Seems like a year of firsts for the platform.
Author Bio: A featured contributor at Inman, BusinessTown, AllBusiness and TheRichest, Rachael Everly, is a business and finance enthusiast, who happens to have a special interest in matters related to student loans and repayment plans.