Android Increases Market Share in Q3

LOS ANGELES — Android, which is Google's mobile operating system, captured a global market share of 81.3 percent for the last quarter, giving it a decided edge in the smartphone market.

According to a report, that figure was up from 75 percent in the prior year's quarter, research firm Strategy Analytics said Thursday. Shipments of Android phones reached 204.4 million last quarter. A year ago, that figure was 129.6 million, the report said.

Apple saw its share of the smartphone market drop to 13.4 percent from 15.6 percent despite an increase in shipments to 33.8 million for second place. Apple is expected to regain some of its lost market share in Q4 because of demand for the iPhone 5S.

"Apple also lost some ground to Android because of its limited presence at the lower end of the smartphone market," Strategy Analytics senior analyst Scott Bicheno said in a statement. "Android will need to take further shipments from Apple if it wants to keep growing in the future, but this is unlikely in the near term as the new iPhone 5s model is proving popular and it will help Apple to regain volumes worldwide in the fourth quarter of 2013."

Meanwhile, Windows Phone doubled its share of the market to 4 percent from 2 percent as shipments increased to 10.2 million from just 3.7 million a year ago, a rise of 178 percent, the report said.

Microsoft's mobile OS is now the fastest growing smartphone platform, Strategy Analytics said.  

BlackBerry's market share fell to just 1 percent from 4.3 percent as shipments slid to 2.5 million, reported.