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Gartner Says Android to Become No. 2 Worldwide Mobile Operating System in 2010 and Challenge Symbian for No. 1 Position by 2014

(PresseBox) (Stamford, Conn., ) The worldwide mobile operating system (OS) market will be dominated by Symbian and Android, as the two OSs will account for 59.8 per cent of mobile OS sales by 2014, according to Gartner, Inc.

Symbian will remain at the top of Gartner's worldwide OS ranking due to Nokia's volume and the push into more mass market price points. However, by the end of the forecast period, the No. 1 spot will be contested with Android, which will be at a very similar share level.

Communication service providers' (CSPs') marketing and vendor support for Androidbased smartphones will drive the platform to become the secondlargest platform, following Symbian, by yearend 2010 (see Table 1). This is almost two years earlier than Gartner predicted a year ago.

"The worldwide mobile OS market is dominated by four players: Symbian, Android, Research In Motion and iOS," said Roberta Cozza, principal research analyst at Gartner. "Launches of updated operating systems - such as Apple iOS 4, BlackBerry OS 6, Symbian 3 and Symbian 4, and Windows Phone 7 - will help maintain strong growth in smartphones in the second half of 2010 and 2011 and spur innovation. However, we believe that market share in the OS space will consolidate around a few key OS providers that have the most support from CSPs and developers and strong brand awareness with consumer and enterprise customers."

Gartner expects manufacturers such as Samsung to launch many new budget Android devices in the second half of 2010 that will drive Android into mass market segments. Other players, such as Sony Ericsson, LG and Motorola, will follow a similar strategy. This trend should help Android become the top OS in North America by the end of 2010.

"CSPs and mobile device manufacturers alike will need to revisit their platform strategies and balance the need to pursue platforms with the highest current demand against the need to maintain differentiation with unique devices," Ms Cozza said. "CSPs will likely reduce the number of platforms they offer, to reduce their support costs and clarify their propositions to market."

Gartner predicts that by 2014, opensource platforms will continue to dominate more than 60 per cent of the market for smartphones. Singlesource platforms, such as Apple's iOS and Research In Motion's OS, will increase in unit terms, but their growth rate will be below market average and not enough to sustain share increase. Windows Phone will be relegated to sixth place behind MeeGo in Gartner's worldwide OS ranking by 2014.

Additional information is available in the report "Forecast: Mobile Communications Devices by Open Operating System, 2007-2014," which is available on Gartner's website at http://www.gartner.com/....

Gartner UK Ltd

Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT) is the world's leading information technology research and advisory company. Gartner delivers the technologyrelated insight necessary for its clients to make the right decisions, every day. From CIOs and senior IT leaders in corporations and government agencies, to business leaders in hightech and telecom enterprises and professional services firms, to technology investors, Gartner is the valuable partner to 60,000 clients in 10,800 distinct organizations. Through the resources of Gartner Research, Gartner Executive Programs, Gartner Consulting and Gartner Events, Gartner works with every client to research, analyze and interpret the business of IT within the context of their individual role. Founded in 1979, Gartner is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, U.S.A., and has 4,300 associates, including 1,200 research analysts and consultants, and clients in 80 countries.

For more information, visit www.gartner.com.