Nielsen: Consumers Hot for Android-based Smartphones

About a third of consumers who plan to buy a new smartphone are lining up for Android-based devices, a notable gain for Google Inc.'s OS from its market position just a few short months ago, according to The Nielsen Co.'s monthly survey of U.S. mobile consumers for the first calendar quarter of 2011.

Nielsen's data for the period shows that 31 percent of consumers who plan to purchase a new smartphone preferred the Android OS, while 30 percent chose Apple Computer Inc.'s iOS and 11 percent Research in Motion Inc.'s Blackberry. Some 20 percent of consumers don't know what to do, Nielsen said.

While not a Teutonic shift from the researcher's data compiled for Q3 2010, when Apple's iPhone commanded 33 percent of the market compared to Android's 26 percent and Blackberry's 13 percent, the results already are translating into sales, Nielsen said.

About half of those surveyed in March 2011 who purchased a smartphone in the past six months opted for an Android device, while 25 percent had elected an iPhone and 15 percent acquired a Blackberry unit.

According to Nielsen's survey data, at the end of the first quarter 2011, 37 percent of mobile consumers who owned a smartphone had one with an Android OS, 27 percent claimed an iOS device and 22 percent a Blackberry. Windows Phone has about 10 percent of the market, the researcher said.

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