Euro Android

If there was any doubt that 2010 was the year of Android, then the latest set of European smartphone shipment data compiled by analysis firm IDC should pretty much seal the deal. According to IDC's latest Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, the Android platform saw massive year-on-year growth of 1,580 percent in Europe between Q4 2009 and Q4 2010.

In the fourth quarter of 2010 Europeans snapped up 7.9 million Android-powered phones, compared to 470,000 during the final quarter of 2009. This places Android comfortably ahead of both Apple and RIM, who shipped 5.2 million and 4.8 million phones respectively.

IDC research manager Francisco Jeronimo predicts that Android will continue to go from strength to strength and maintain its position as the European market leader.

"The last quarter of 2010 clearly shows the trends for the coming years in Western Europe. The Western European mobile phone market will be dominated by smartphones, and Android will be the king of the hill, Android surged from 4% to 31% market share in less than a year to become the market leader in 4Q10 and the fastest growing operating system ever."

Jeronimo also expects Android growth to continue to outpace that of iOS and other platforms over the next four years, as more and more Europeans turn towards smartphones as opposed to cheaper feature phones. [IDC]