Sales of the iPhone and iPad pale in comparison to devices running Android, however that doesn’t mean Google is set to dominate the wireless industry. As traffic research compiled by IBM over the Christmas holiday indicates, usage still matters and that’s where Apple’s iOS operating system shines.
IBM’s Digital Analytics Benchmark Report found that 23 percent of all the online shopping traffic it tracked on Christmas came from an iOS device. By comparison, only 4.6 percent of all purchases the company tracked were from devices like the Samsung Galaxy S4 and other devices running Google’s Android operating system.
Of all the web traffic the company tracked, it found that 32.6 percent of it came from an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, eclipsing the 14.8 percent it tracked coming from Android devices.
To be clear, IBM says it gathered these numbers by tracking the transactions that were processed on 800 retail websites in the United States. As such, these numbers are slightly skewed. Apple’s iOS sales are the strongest in the United States when compared to other countries. It’s also entirely possible that these numbers are skewed because of wealth discrepancies and other factors.
Even with those caveats in mind, it’s clear that Google’s dominance in smartphones only really pertains to the amount of devices the company’s operating system actually ships on. Beyond that, Apple mostly dominates in the metrics that matter more to developers and users.
For example, Apple’s higher usage share means that users are more likely to use an application made for the iPhone more often, even if that same application is available on Android. Releasing an app for iOS is likely to get them more usage and more ad revenue, however bringing their app to Android means they could double their audience. While larger developers can afford to bring their apps to both platforms at the same time, many smaller developers simply don’t have enough resources to do the same. These developers have to decide what platform should come first and metrics are a big part of that process.
Its numbers like these that keep app developers flocking to iOS, fueling demand for the iPhone, and iPad.