Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) remains on top of the game as far as the OS penetration is concerned, and it is focused on increasing its market share.
Google currently occupies 80% of the market share in the mobile OS market on a global scale and 60% in the US market. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has put up a good fight due to the popularity of its iPhones especially in the American Market. Analysts, however, believe that Android OS might be more dominant than iOS in the next five years due to a number of factors, and this will lead to more market share for Android.
One of the reasons why many users claim that they prefer to use iPhones is the native iPhone messaging app called iMessage. However, SMS messages are however being taken over by Over-The-Top (OTT) messaging services such as Whatsapp, which now has more than 1 billion users. The fact that it features a more emotional platform where one can see whether the other person is typing, the ability to send images and documents with ease and lack of charges makes it a more appealing service. This means iPhone might lose its leverage on those customers who were previously inclined to its native messaging service.
Android fragmentation has been one of the problems that most people do not like about the OS. Thus it is unattractive to some people. Google is, however, working on reducing the fragmentation of the ecosystem. This has been one major problem for users as well as developers. A good example is the release of Android Marshmallow, which was released in October 2015. So far only 4.6% of Android devices have received the update. Apple releases OS updates once in a while and as soon as it is ready but the installation depends on user decision to upgrade.
There are also plans to decouple handsets and carrier plans meaning Android users in the US will pay for their mobile plans and purchase their devices separately. This will especially encourage people to purchase premium devices. Google is also enhancing Android penetration through an Android desktop OS.