Google’s mobile OS is five years young today — Androids don’t age, they just get updated and replaced — and my colleagues at Crave UK have the full story of how Android began. I, however, wanted to look at the numbers that tell us how far it’s come.
First let’s take a look at the favorite metric of Andy Rubin and other Googlers — the total-Android-activations number. The Googleplex tells us the total number hit a half billion back in mid-September, around the same time Google Chairman Eric Schmidt was quoted as saying there were 1.3 million new activations each day. Doing some quick math on the Android calculator app, I get just over 570 million total activations up to the current day. That’s almost two Android devices per U.S. citizen, and quickly approaching one for every 10 people on Earth.
At the current rate of growth (taking Schmidt’s word for it, of course), Android will reach a billion activations before its sixth birthday next year. That’s a few years less than it took Facebook to reach a billion active users, which is pretty impressive considering that all Facebook accounts are free to set up, but few Android devices come without a price or carr… [Read more]
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