Over the Christmas weekend almost four million new Android mobile phones were activated across the world, indicating that Google's operating system was enjoying a bumper year as the stocking-filler of choice.
Each day a total of 1.85 million Android activations were registered globally, making for just over 3.7 million between December 24th and 25th as presents were unwrapped and new phones taken for a test drive.
Google recently revealed that about 700,000 new Android smartphones and tablets were being registered each day, so the Christmas gift-giving rush more than doubled this typical activation level.
When you combine Google's total haul with that of Apple, its main rival, close to seven million new mobile phones were pulled from their packaging in less than 48 hours. This does not even take into account users who got models running competing platforms, such as BlackBerry OS and Windows Phone 7, so the real total is likely to be much higher.
The people who did get a smartphone this Christmas, whether it was running Android or iOS, did not wait long before filling their new mobiles with applications, according to Flurry Analytics.
Over the Christmas weekend more than 242 million apps were downloaded from the various app store services. These purchases will have gone some way to increasing the amount of cash that has been spent by UK consumers in the days following Christmas, with current estimates putting the total outlay at over £4.3 billion.
The battle for market share in the smartphone sector is fierce but it seems that Google has got things well under control with Android, which is benefitting from being available on a wide number of handsets and being installed on entry level mobiles, as well as flagship devices.
However, 2012 could be a little tougher for many manufacturers because consumers are expected to reign in their spending on mobiles, saving their cash instead by holding onto their existing handsets and swapping to a SIM only tariff, rather than a contract lasting up to 24 months.
HTC recently revised its profit projections for 2011 downwards, after sales failed to maintain their previously buoyant nature, despite the fact that it has launched top end models like the Sensation XE and Titan.
Although there are some predicting a gloomy outlook for the coming year, there are still a host of exciting mobile phones on the horizon which could change the fortunes of major manufacturers.
The first quad core smartphone processors will be finding their way into range topping mobiles in the first few months of the year. In addition the UK could finally see 4G LTE networks and compatible handsets, if providers and regulators get their acts together.
2012 might also be the year in which 3D technology takes off. The LG Optimus 3D proved that this was possible in 2011, but mainstream success has yet to materialise. Whatever happens in the next 12 months, Android activations show little sign of slowing from their current pace.
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