Android Users’ Cellular Preference Vs. iOS Highlights Mobile OS Differences

January 22, 2013

Although Android continues to dominate both US and global markets in terms of devices, Akamai’s web browsing analytics show that roughly 60% of mobile web usage is created by iOS devices versus only 20% via Android. Specifically, Android owns 75% of the global smartphone market as opposed to iOS’ 15% share. Android’s popularity is even more pronounced in countries with large low-income populations; 90% of Chinese smartphone users are on Android devices. These usage numbers come from mostly US-based sites, so it’s possible a global sample would indicate different usage trends. Android cellular traffic edges iOS, while iOS traffic is mostly Wi-Fi; Android users’ preference for cellular is likely a result of user inexperience or interface differences.

Enterprise device adoption trends differ from overall markets, driven largely by Android security concerns and iOS’ popularity with higher income knowledge workers. Consequently, the average organization’s device population is 45% iOS and only 24% Android, though Android enterprise growth is expected due to ongoing Google and Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM)-driven security initiatives.

ETA Bottom-Line:  Due to Wi-Fi’s lower costs, particularly if your company owns or reimburses employee data plans, look to train workers and setup phones to automatically choose Wi-Fi over cellular. If you have a large or growing Android device population, this is of particular importance given Android users’ tendency to prefer cellular.