Apple gains ground while Android pushes to 50% share of US market

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Apple's iPhone grew 1.4% in the U.S. mobile OEM and smartphone OS markets during the three months ending in November, but Google's Android platform continued to dominate and gained 3.1% in its march to acquire half of America's subscribership.

Market research firm comScore's released its latest report on Thursday and saw more of the same in the U.S. smartphone arena from August to November, with Apple and Android showing slow but steady growth while RIM continues to lose ground and Windows Phone stagnates.

comScore's MobiLens service, which reports key trends in the mobile industry by surveying more than 30,000 U.S. subscribers over the age of 13, found that Samsung remained the top handset maker in America and posted 0.3% of growth. The South Korean manufacturer of Android and feature-phones now owns over a quarter of the entire U.S. mobile market.

Apple was the only other smartphone OEM to show positive changes to its marketshare, and leveraged the successful launch of its iPhone 4S to capture another 1.4% during the three month period to end in fourth place with 11.2% of the market. LG and Motorola took the number two and three spots with 20.5% and 13.7%, respectively.

Canadian company Researtch in Motion saw its BlackBerry product line take another hit as the devices suffered the steepest loss of marketshare, dropping 0.6 points to account for a meager 6.5% of the market.

MobiLens top smartphone makers | Source: comScore

Android enjoyed an overwhelming lead in the smartphone OS space, taking nearly half of all smartphone subscribers with 46.9%. The 3.1 point change from August more than doubled the 1.4% growth Apple's iOS managed over the same period. The iPhone maker ended November with a 28.7% share.

RIM once again saw the greatest loss, with a 3.1 point blow to its already suffering marketshare as only 16.6% of subscribers were found to be BlackBerry users.

Microsoft's fledgling Windows Phone dipped to around 5% while Symbian remains at the bottom with 1.5% of the market.

MobiLens top smartphone platforms | Source: comScore

MobiLens also found that overall mobile content usage was up across the board in metrics like texting, app usage and mobile internet browsing, among others.

Nearly three out of four users, 72.6%, sent texts with their phones but usage of downloaded apps saw the biggest point change and grew 3.3% to end November with a 44.9% share.

MobiLens mobile content usage findings | Source: comScore

The latest statistics are in line with reports of strong download numbers coming from iPhone users following healthy sales of the Apple's newest iPhone 4S.