Gartner: Android Share Jumps To 25.5 Percent, Now Second Most Popular OS Worldwide

Gartner’s third quarter smartphone data is out today and it looks like Android is continuing to grow by leaps and bounds. According to the latest report, Android accounted for 25.5 percent of worldwide smartphone sales, making it the No. 2 operating system, rising from a 3.5 percent marketshare in the same quarter in 2009. Apple’s iOS, on the other hand, dropped from last year, from 17.1 percent in 2009 to 16.6 percent in 2010. Symbian took the top spot with 36.6 percent of sales share.

Gartner also said that global mobile phone sales totaled 417 million units in the third quarter of 2010, a 35 percent increase from the third quarter of 2009. Smartphone sales grew 96 percent from the third quarter last year, and smartphones accounted for 19.3 percent of overall mobile phone sales in the third quarter of 2010.

In terms of North America stats, Apple’s share surged past Research In Motion (RIM) but it still falls behind Android. Gartner estimated that Android phones accounted for 75 percent to 80 percent of Verizon Wireless’s smartphone trade in the third quarter of 2010.

Android’s staggering growth isn’t surprising, considering there have been similar reports of the operating system’s ascent up the smartphone food chain. Recent Nielsen data showed that Android devices were the most popular choice for new smartphone purchases over the past six months.