No, when I talk of Android Domination, I’m not going to talk about robots taking over our lives. This is a different kind of Android, the Google kind. The Android operating system was released by Google in 2008. Since then, Android devices have taken over the mobile markets around the world. It holds the largest market share for mobile and tablet devices, even more than Apple’s popular iOS.
What Android has done in just the last few years is very impressive. But if a report by Gartner is correct, the entire computing industry is about to become an Android haven.
Since the introduction of the first personal computers, there’s been a fight for dominance between Apple and Microsoft. It’s a fight Microsoft had won hands down years ago, but Apple continued to fight. They made inroads here and there but the Windows operating system ran on nearly 100% of computers as late as 2005. But then things began to change.
Apple made a comeback with its line of products including the revolutionary iPhone in 2007. The mobile market was an area Microsoft already struggled in and has never been able to compete successfully (in terms of market share).
And the industry as a whole was interested in moving to Open Source so operating systems like Linux began to have more appeal, albeit to a smaller set of computer savvy consumers. But it wasn’t long before Google entered the fray. Its open source approach for Android proved compelling to developers and hardware makers alike. Soon mobile devices were popping up everywhere from low end tablets to high end mobile phones.
Still Android was only competing in the mobile space though, in a battle with Apple for the most used mobile operating systems (phones and tablets included). The recent predictions by Gartner indicate that Android will be on more systems, including PCs (netbooks mostly), than any other.
In this chart by Statista, you can see the green bar shows the majority of devices shipped in 2015 and 2016 will run Android. But what is really interesting is that the market share of Windows and even iOS/Mac OS both grow too. Just a little. The numbers show the “other” category shrinking and clearly most of the new devices will have some variety of Android OS. My guess is that devices that used to be shipped with a form of proprietary software will now have Android as the base instead.
At first blush, it does appear Android is dominating the world. But it also seems that both Apple and Microsoft will hold their own for the time being. What can that mean? The battle is far from over.