AndroidGoogle today in its fourth-quarter earnings call confirmed Andy Rubin's statement in December that some 300,000 Android devices are being activated every day. That's 9 million or so a month, folks.

Google also said that searches from within Android ended the year up 10 times. ("10x actually is what was said.") "I think that this is the year that phones will play the big role in commerce, like I predicted," said Google Senior VP of Product Management Jonathan Rosenberg.

Other highlights from the Q&A:

  • Rosenberg on tablets vs. smartphones: "They're both viable."
  • Mobile search grew 4 times on mobile devices. "No doubt that this market absolutely is cranking."
  • "Click to call ads are generating a lot of money every month."

Reader comments

Google confirms 300,000 Android activations a day


What counts as activation? I flashed my phone about 20 times over the last couple days trying to figure out how to do it right and fix everything. I ended up having to login to my google account each time to get to the marketplace.

very impressive for sure, but i also wonder how may are deactivated every day.. there is no way that is net. I activated 3 different android phones last year, so that number doesn't represent customers either. I just wish we could get actual growth...these spin numbers piss me off. Though you'll get the same bs from apple and microsoft too.

Showing that iOS - on one carrier loses no share in the total market place while Android takes share from RIM, Window, and Palm. I wonder what you think it was showing. That means that Apple - stuck on AT&T - has maintained it's share while the other carriers replaced their RIMs and Windows and Palm with a touch screen app enabled device. Which for now is Android, until they can get the proper one.

Apple counts by iOS devices which of course includes iTouch's and iPads with WiFi only. The first tablet was the Galaxy Tab. So IF Apple actually had the balls to break down the number of iphones, itouch's and ipads and put their phone numbers head to head with Android we know who would be winning.

Sure they can cry about the sheer number of available mfg's and models, but they chose to limit themselves by carrier and by choice, Android didn't.

Now that 2011 will include Tablets and IF Samsung decides to ship the Android like itouch we could see even more growth.

Very excitable people on this forum today. We are however, comparing Apples and Oranges. We are also comparing fully detailed earnings reports with tweets, and approximations and sheer sophistry.

I note no link to what Google actually said. However, saying that we are "activating 300K a day" is somewhat legal ( Google is not generating any revenue) but quite misleading. Apple reports what they sell in the entire Quarter ( sales, not channel) and everybody divides by 90, give or take. Goggle say they are activating 300K a day on a given day and everybody multiplies by 90. Maybe Steve Jobs should tweet " We are activating 500K a day" on Dec 5th, and see if idiots fall for that particualr trick. It was, after all the height of the Holiday season when Rubin tweeted.

Lets ignore that the activation may not be a sale and assume that Google are in fact tracking device IDs. I note, in passing, that they didn't say 30M a quarter but "300K a day". So why not the quarterly figures. As for Jan, that always falls off ( although with Android last year, it overcame that with accelerated growth into new markets and carrier). So if they reached 300K a day at the height of the Dec season, you cannot assume they are in Jan. But let's see the wording.

We know they were 200K a day coming in ( that has been verified). If Oct 1st was 200k and Dec was 300K the average is 220K, assuming some linear growth. The 30 day activations are 20 million. I will come back to that figure.

As for not including the iPod touch and the iPad - fraid not - Fandroids. The Google activations include the Samsung Galaxy Tab and the Google TV . If Android Tablets were in the ascendent ( not likely) you wouldnt exclude the iPad now would ya? So dont do that now. If an Android MP3 player was taking on the iPod touch ( effectively an iPhone with no 3G connection) it would be included in Google's activations per day.

Sum total of Apple's Dec Q sales

1) 16.2 M iPhones ( and supply constraints as they said in the conference call).
2) 10 M iPod touches.
3) 7.3 M iPads.

which is a about 33M sales or about 40M activations using Googles logic

I jest ( sorta) , lets stay with 33M. Android activated about 20M. I'll be kind and say 22M ( if OCT 1st were more than 200K a day)

Android phones sell mostly in China and America. This is carrier and price related. Nevertheless of the $3B revenue Apple made in China $2.6B was made in the last Q. Android is going to lose share there ( as are the other iPhone Java clones in that market, and they are legion). This will accelerate if Apple maintains the 3GS as an option after June with a reduced price ( again). Which I think they will. Anyway as Apple said in their conference call they tend to double when going muli-carrier. Factor that into China and the US and Androids market share collapses in both markets this year. And that is, effectively, their market.

The Tablet war is over. The original iPad will be reduced to $399 when the iPad 2 comes out. Any cheap Android manufacturer who hopes to compete at that price will produce something like the Next ( i.e. the UK chain) Android tablet which came out in October. Google it. It didnt work Thats because Apple has the supply chains sown up ( and it spent $3.9 billion doing that) , and it can actually write an OS which uses the GPU rather than a JVM which doesnt.

The stuttering you see on your Andoird phone ( unless it is a Samsung phone ).

That gets even worse on the bigger screen. The galaxy tab which has the same chip as the iPAd and similar drivers was the last great hope for Android. Even then it cost £200 more in the UK market. And Samsung can write drivers. Gingerbread will prove that you cant really compete with an OS company in this space.

The iPad will be two years ahead in April, but the iPad 1 will wipe out any Android competition. Next December will see iOS 2-3 times Android in sales, but only 2 times in activations. In terms of who buys what, and revenue for developers, it wont even be a competition. Interest will die away. the poor and the "rooters" will be left to not buy software on the remaining Android devices, and for the rest of us the old android phone may be useful for holding up badly misaligned furniture, or $5 on ebay.

"So IF Apple actually had the balls to break down the number of iphones, itouch's and ipads and put their phone numbers head to head with Android we know who would be winning."

Lol. Apple put their exact sales on the iPhone to the last iPhone in their conference call. They have to. Its the law. I put the figure above. Google can tweet about 300K, or say they are activating 300K a day at the end of the Q, but dont have the "balls" to specifiy the total for the quarter.