With Android continuing to gain both mindshare and market share around the world, there are now over two billion monthly active devices running on Google’s Linux kernel-based mobile operating system globally. This was announced earlier today by the company’s CEO, Sundar Pichai, during his keynote speech at the Google I/O developer conference in Mountain View, California. Although the company owns many popular services, such as Search, Maps, Chrome, YouTube, Gmail and Drive, Android has become one of its biggest brands that is more widely-used than any other operating system, mobile or otherwise. Google’s mobile OS reportedly dominates the global smartphone market with over 80% market share, while Apple's iOS comes in a distant second with just around 17% of the global smartphone market.
Android has been gaining more users with every passing year, thanks largely to the continuing growth in the number of smartphone users in emerging markets like Vietnam, Indonesia and India, even as growth continues to be sluggish in the developed markets in Western Europe and North America. The last time Google officially announced the number of monthly active Android devices was back in September 2015, when the company claimed to have 1.4 billion users globally. For context, Apple announced in January 2016 that it had one billion monthly active users on its iOS platform, but has not updated that figure until now. With over seven billion people around the world, many of whom are yet to start using smartphones, it shouldn’t be a surprise if Android hits the three billion mark at some stage in the coming years.
While Android remains one of Google's most popular products, the company also has a number of other services that have over a billion users each. The list includes Google Maps, YouTube, Chrome, Gmail, Search and Google Play. Even Google Drive has managed to notch up 800 million users, while Google Photos has crossed the 500 million monthly user threshold. With the increasing adoption of Android, developer support for the platform has also improved by leaps and bounds; a fact not lost on the search giant. While announcing the milestone via Twitter, Google thanked the developers who have supported the platform over the years, as well as the many commercial partners who have made Android the largest computing platform in the world.