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Google Android continues growth streak over Apple's iPhone

Google's Android mobile OS has continued to widen its lead on Apple's iOS in terms of U.S. smartphone subscribers, while Research in Motion and Microsoft have fallen even further behind, according to a new survey.

comScore's MobiLens report found Google Android to be the top smartphone platform with 38.1 percent market share in the U.S. during the period from March to May. The platform's 5.1 percent gain outpaced Apple's 1.4 percent increase to 26.6 percent.

The gains posted by Android and iOS were taken from BlackBerry maker RIM and Microsoft, which lost 4.2 percent and 1.9 percent market share, respectively. RIM's share of subscribers stands at 24.7 percent after the drop, while Microsoft held onto a 5.8 percent share. Palm fell slightly from 2.8 percent in February to 2.4 percent in May.

According to the survey, Apple maintained its lead over RIM after having passed its rival in terms of active U.S. users last month. Quarterly sales of the iPhone surpassed BlackBerry smartphones last October, with Apple CEO Steve Jobs remarking, "I don't see them catching up with us in the foreseeable future." RIM recently formed a committee to review its corporate structure after the company's struggles prompted investors to call for an ouster of its co-CEOs.

Source: comScore

In terms of handset share market share, Apple continued to gain on third-placed Motorola, though the iPhone maker still has a long way to go to catch its rival. Apple gained 1.2 percent to reach 8.7 percent of mobile subscribers in the States. Meanwhile, Samsung, LG and Motorola held onto the top three spots with respective shares of 24.8 percent, 21.1 percent and 15.1 percent.

comScore MobiLens survey
Source: comScore

Also of note, the survey saw gains in the number of subscribers who reported using their mobile phones to play games, download apps, and use a browser. Subscribers who play games on their phones jumped from 24.6 percent in February to 26.9 percent in May, while 38.6 of respondents said they download apps on their phones, up from 36.6 percent. Finally, the share of subscribers who use a browser on their mobile phones increased by 1.5 percent to reach 39.8 percent.

Android saw the first blip in a two-year growth rampage last quarter when it experienced its first sequential loss of market share in a region since it began its rapid ascension in 2009. Needham & Co. analyst Charlie Wolf predicted last month that Android would resume its growth pace in the June and September quarters before experiencing a "material decline" in the December quarter after the release of the iPhone 5.