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Motorola Droid estimated to have sold 100,000 in first weekend

Motorola's new Android-based Droid, which launched on Verizon Wireless last Friday and aims to take on Apple's iPhone, is estimated by one analyst to have sold about 100,000 units in its first weekend.

As reported by Bloomberg, analyst Mark McKechnie with Broadpoint AmTech said Verizon had about 200,000 Droids on-hand for sale at launch, and most stores surveyed sold at least half of their stock. With more phones based on the Google Android mobile operating system releasing this quarter, Motorola is predicted to sell 1 million to end 2009, and 10 million in 2010.

"I see the first few days as encouraging," McKechnie said. "There seems to be pretty good demand — they've taken the right steps and picked a good partner with Google on the Android side."

Additionally, analyst Jim Suva with Citigroup believes Motorola will sell 1.3 million Android phones in the fourth quarter and 9 million in 2010. Compare that with Apple's projected sales of 8 million iPhones for the quarter and 28.5 million next year.

Analyst Gene Munster with Piper Jaffray is even more bullish, predicting sales of 9.2 million iPhones in the December quarter, and 36 million in 2010.

This summer, the iPhone 3GS sold over a million phones in its first three days of sale. That strong debut well exceeded its predecessors. In 2007, it took 74 days for the first-generation iPhone to reach that milestone. And in 2007, the iPhone 3G also sold 1 million in its first three days, but in 21 countries. The iPhone 3GS launched in eight nations.

Still, the Droid and other Android-based phones are predicted to have a positive effect for Motorola, which has struggled as of late. According to Gartner, Motorola's share of the cell phone market was 5.6 percent in the second quarter of 2009, down from 10 percent a year prior, Bloomberg reported.

The launch of the Droid has been accompanied by a marketing push by Verizon that, according to one study, has had a negative impact on the perception of AT&T in the target 18- to 34-year-old age demographic. Verizon's aggressive advertisements have led to a lawsuit from AT&T.