Research firm Gartner reckons the Android OS will be shipped in 1.1 billion devices during 2014, a 26 per cent increase from 2013 (see table).
“There is no doubt that there is a volume versus value equation, with Android users also purchasing lower-cost devices compared to Apple users,” said Annette Zimmerman, principal analyst at Gartner.
Gartner said Android holds by far the largest number of installed-base devices, with 1.9 billion in use at the beginning of 2014. That compares with the installed base of 682 million for OS/Mac OS devices.
Worldwide, Gartner expects the combined shipment of devices (PCs, tablets, “ultramobiles” and mobile phones) to reach 2.5 billion units in 2014, a 7.6 per cent increase from 2013.
“The device market continues to evolve, with buyers deciding which combination of devices is required to meet their wants and needs,” said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner. “Mobile phones are a must have and will continue to grow but at a slower pace, with opportunities moving away from the top-end premium devices to mid-end basic products.”
(By 2017, Gartner reckons more than 75 per cent of Android’s volumes will come from emerging markets.)
Mobile phones are expected to dominate overall device shipments in 2014, with 1.9 billion shipped in 2014 (a 5 per cent increase from 2013).
The research firm expects so-called ultramobiles, which include tablets, hybrids and clamshells, to take over as the main driver of growth in the devices market from 2014, with a growth rate of 54 per cent.
“Complimentary smaller tablets will take over from the larger tablet form factors, providing the added mobility that consumers desire at a lower cost and will compete with hybrids for consumer attention,” added Atwal.