Is Your Business App On Android? Here’s Why It Had Better Be

Global Domination? Gartner Says the Android Market Share is 86 Percent of Mobile Devices

Planning a new app for your small business? Make sure you build it on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Android, since that’s where you’re most likely to find your customers.

According to a new Gartner report, Android is dominating the smartphone marketplace with a whopping 86.2 percent share in the second quarter of 2016.

Android Dominates Smartphone Business

Android’s topnotch performance came from demand for mid- to lower-end smartphones in emerging markets, and also from premium smartphones.

It’s also important to note that a number of big Android players, such as Samsung with the Galaxy S7, have launched high-end devices to attract customers. Moreover, Chinese smartphone brands like Oppo and Huawei are entering into the market with more reasonably priced devices.

Robert Cozza, research director at Gartner said, “Google is evolving the Android platform fast, which allows Android players to remain at the cutting edge of smartphone technology.”

“Facing a highly commoditized smartphone market, Google’s focus is to further expand and diversify the Android platform with additional functionalities, like virtual reality, enabling more-intelligent experiences and reach into wearables, connected home devices, in-car entertainment and TV.”

Chinese Manufacturers Quickly Climbing the Ladder

One of the factors in Android’s success has clearly been the proliferation of lower cost smartphones — particularly from Chinese manufacturers — which us the mobile operating system. Chinese brand Huawei, for instance, showed solid growth with 30,670 units sold in the second quarter of 2016.

Other Chinese brands that made it to the list of the world’s top 10 phone vendors are Oppo and Xiaomi.  At 129 percent, Oppo reported the highest growth in the second quarter.

Anshul Gupta, research director at Gartner commented, “Features such as an anti-shake camera optimized for selfies, and rapid charge technology, helped Oppo carve a niche market for itself and boost sales in a highly competitive and commoditized smartphone market.”

Apple Continues Its Downward Spiral

Another factor in Android’s success has been the decline of Apple, and by extension its iOS mobile operating system.

The company posted a 7.7 percent decline in the second quarter as sales took a hit in North America and Western Europe.  More worrying is the fact that Apple reported its worst decline in Greater China and mature Asia/Pacific regions. Sales in these regions took a 26 percent tumble.

These declines help explain the decline of iOS from a 14.6 percent share of the market in Q2 of 2015 to a 12.9 percent share in Q2 of 2016.

Other operating systems, most notably Windows and Blackberry, also saw declines: Windows from 2.5 percent in Q2 of 2015 to 0.6 percent in Q2 of 2016 and Blackberry from 0.3 pecent in Q2 of 2015 to 0.1 percent in Q2 of 2016.

What This Means for Your Business

From a small business owner’s perspective, the message is fairly clear: most of your customers are most likely using Android devices.

What’s also clear is that the smartphone market is regaining its pace. A Canalys report found global smartphone shipment edging upward in the second quarter. According to the Gartner report, global smartphone sales saw a 4.3 percent growth over the same period in 2015.

For your business, it’s therefore a good idea to develop a solid mobile marketing strategy that can help you connect with customers.

Android Nougat Photo via Shutterstock

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Shubhomita Bose Shubhomita Bose is a Staff Writer for Small Business Trends. She covers key studies and surveys about the small business market, along with general small business news. She draws on 8 years of experience in copywriting, marketing and communications, having worked extensively on creating content for small and medium sized enterprises.

8 Reactions
  1. I know I’m frustrated when an app is only available on iOS. But any serious app should be on both platforms. That’s the short story.

    • Robert,

      And the long story is that many of the new apps are starting out on Apple Store first.

      I have my standalone podcast / podcatcher app on Apple App Store, Google Play and Amazon Android App Store

  2. Shubhomita: For the record, I am Apple fan boy (but I have used all kind of different operating systems and mobile phones during the years), but I have to ask: who is making money on the mobile market? How many of the Android users have paid for apps, compared with Apple users? How many Android users have installed the latest main version of the mobile operating system. I can come up with more questions, if you want! 😉

  3. The problem is convincing people to download yur app when it really doesn’t serve them other than give an avenue to buy from you. I think that it is important to think about what type of tool you can provide to your niche before you even think about creating an app.

    • Absolutely! The challenge is not just limited to building an app for iOS or Android, it’s also about giving customers the incentive to actually download it. Hence, the need to devise a solid mobile marketing strategy.

  4. Really great article Shubhomita, Android is the most popular and most accessible mobile operating system (OS) used by majority of smartphone and tablet users, it is also the platform of choice for many mobile app developers. Through Android-powered gadgets, consumers are given access to a lifestyle centered on innovation and technology.

    Mobile App are not only used for social media apps or games, it can also used for important operation such as shopping, knowing events and banking. Android app is able to handle any task and operation on your mobile or tablet devices. That’s the reason in which more and more businessmen are developing mobile apps to expand their business. Businessmen also can be aware of every update in the applications through notifications.

  5. Hi Shubhomita Bose,

    You have shared amazing tips to make my business app better. I was looking for such ways and came to your blog by searching for the same. I will be implementing it soon.