By year end, both of these two OSes will be bigger than Windows

“Google reported a new activation rate milestone: 1 million/day,” Horace Dediu reports for Asymco. “The rate of activations has been increasing steadily which leads to a question: how high can it go?”

“The answer is to take sales (shipments actually) per category and cast the data as “activations,'” Dediu reports. “Defined as ‘activations’ device and computers are being adopted at the rate of about 5.6 million units per day.”

Deidu reports, “As a percent of total activations, Android is running at about 15% and OS is at 10%. Android has already overtaken Windows activations and with the new iPhone, it’s likely iOS will do as well this year.”

Read more, and check out the usual excellent charts, in the full article here.

Related articles:
Apple takes lion’s share of mobile profits; Samsung unit sales estimates cloud market share picture – May 1, 2012
40% of U.S. teens plan to buy an iPhone, 80% plan to buy an iPad within next 6 months – April 4, 2012
With 8.7% market share, Apple reaps 75% of mobile phone profits – February 3, 2012


      1. By my quick math Apple’s iOS already surpassed Windows as the world’s best selling OS last quarter. Up until Q2 2012 Microsoft was touting the # of Windows licenses sold. They were averaging 50 million quarter since the release of Windows 7, and should have been down to 45-48 million in Q3 2012, but shockingly Microsoft didn’t release sales figures last quarter.

        Apple OTOH sold a combined 51 million iPads, iPhone, and iPod touches in Q3 2012, which would make it the world’s top OS.

  1. MDN’s missing take (perhaps):

    “Speaking at PC EXPO ’97—yes, 1997—Steve Ballmer, then Executive Vice President of Sales and Support in the World Business Strategy Group spoke of the “Windows everywhere” vision, and described how even then the ambition was a decade old.” – Ars Technica, 24 July 2011

    How’s that working out for ya, Ballmy?

  2. Did the article leave MDN speechless?

    MacDailyNews Take:

    that’s how it appeared today at 3:23 pm after the story ended and where MDN usually offers their ‘Pearls of Wisdom’.

  3. I think we need to separate the metric into total installed base, annual sales in units and annual sales in dollar terms.

    Apple’s iPhone revenues already outstrip the entire revenue stream of Microsoft, including Windows, Server & Tools, Office, X-Box, Bing and anything else you care to name. So based on one metric, that is yearly sales, mobile devices have already outstripped Windows, by a large extent. And that’s without counting the sales effect of the iPad. And that’s only coming from one company – Apple.

    In terms of total installed base, Ballmer constantly talks about 1 billion installed Windows PCs. At WWDC 2012 Tim Cook said that there have been 365 million iOS devices sold to date with 80% running on iOS 5. This means that 300 million iOS devices are running with the latest software. How many Windows machines out there are running Windows 7? 400 million to date, according to Ballmer. So on a one to one comparison basis, there are slightly less iOS devices running the latest software than Windows PC running Windows 7, but not by a significant margin.

    In terms of the trendline, of the number of units sold in the last year, Android and iOS sells in the region of 200 million iOS devices (140 million iPhones and 60 million iPads) and maybe 200 million Android devices for a combined total of 400 million devices. Windows sells about 250 million licenses a year. So on a yearly basis alone, iOS and Android combined kills Windows on a 2:1 basis.

    Long term, you’ll see Windows decline while the Mac picks up speed. While the Mac won’t be overtaking Windows any time soon, the trend towards mobile is clear.

  4. One other observation about “activations” that I have no hard data to back up, but seems very real. That is this: In my experience, Android users don’t keep their hardware as long as iOS users. It seems like the Android users I know upgrade their phones more often than iPhone users. Like they are continually hoping that the next phone will work like they thought the last phone should have. Forget tablet activations. Most of those activations end up in some dark, lonely, forgotten drawer.

    1. You are probably right. It’s the only way to get the latest Android version. My carrier still offers nothing that Android 4 can run on. I am on 2.3 and will be leaving at the end of my contract. The pay as you go options with iphones looks more tantalizing every day.

  5. Overall, a pretty stupid statistic. Why not include the number of “smart” appliances, from coffee makers to automobiles, that employ Java in some form?

    I can see the value of comparing platforms to demonstrate a move away from traditional desktop computers, but to take it a grain finer is like comparing sales of Red Delicious Apples versus Florida Navel Oranges — comparing apples to oranges in general is hard enough, but going further loses the whole point of the argument.

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