According to iPhone Footprint, Google’s Nexus One outsold the iPhone worldwide by 16% in February 2010.* This gap is likely to widen very soon when the CDMA version compatible with Verizon Wireless is released.
I see a number of reasons why the Nexus One is globally popular. Google is known as one of the world’s best brands. The Nexus One has industry-leading hardware, including a 3.7″ AMOLED touchscreen. The phone is reasonably priced off-contract, which is very important to non-U.S. markets where the subscription/subsidy mobile model does not exist.
Android is on a tear lately and now accounts for almost as much smartphone traffic as the iPhone. See below:
I believe that the chart above represents the single biggest reason iPhone exclusivity in the U.S. will end this year. Apple needs market share, plain and simple.
Will the next-generation iPhone close the gap that is likely to develop or is this a case of “openness” winning?
*Update: The iPhone Footprint report does not cite any sources for the proposition that the Nexus One outsold the iPhone by 16% in February. This is unconfirmed. Thank you to my Google Buzz followers for their noteworthy correction.
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