Android has replaced Windows as the world’s most popular operating system according to an analysis carried out by the research arm of independent web analytics company StatCounter.
In March 2017, Android marginally took the lead of the worldwide OS internet usage market share with 37.93% of users using its operating system to access the internet, whereas Windows was not far behind, with 37.91%. This covers total internet usage across desktop, laptop, tablet and mobile combined.
Aodhan Cullen, CEO at StatCounter, declared the stats as “a milestone in technology history and the end of an era.” He added that “It marks the end of Microsoft’s leadership worldwide of the OS market which it has held since the 1980s. It also represents a major breakthrough for Android which held just 2.4% of global internet usage share only five years ago.”
Cullen outlined that the reasons for the breakthrough were the growth of smartphones to access the internet, a decline in sales of traditional PCs and the impact of Asia on the global market.
Despite this, Windows still dominates the worldwide operating system desktop market, which covers PCs and laptops, as it held 84.34% of the usage share as of March. What’s more, despite Android’s combined platform victory, Windows is still dominating usage in Europe – with 51.7% market share versus Android’s 23.6%. Whereas the story is very different in Asia, where Android leads with 52.2% market share, significantly overshadowing Android’s 29.2%.
Cullen claims that “It will be difficult for Microsoft to make inroads in mobile but the next paradigm shift might give it the opportunity to regain dominance. That could be in Augmented Reality, AI, Voice or Continuum (a product that aims to replace a desktop and smartphone with a single Microsoft-powered phone).”