by Al Sacco

iPhone, Android, Symbian and BlackBerry: Google Searches Since 2004

May 24, 20122 mins
iPhoneMobileOperating Systems

A comparison of online searches for the terms "Android," "iPhone," "Symbian" and "BlackBerry" since 2004 and the latest mobile OS market share numbers provides some valuable insights.

This week, IDG Enterprise, the IDG business unit that includes and a handful of other enterprise technology publications, had its annual editorial offsite. As part of the event, Google’s media outreach guru, Daniel Sieberg, spoke to IDG writers and editors and demonstrated a number of cool Google tools that journalists can use to find data and enhance their stories.

One tool in particular caught my eye: Google Insights, which lets you track and compare Google searches for different terms over time. I immediately wondered what searches for the most popular mobile platforms would look like. What follows is a look at Google searches since 2004 for the terms Android, iPhone, Symbian and BlackBerry. (Note: These numbers aren’t exactly “scientific,” since “several approximations are used to compute these results,” according to Google. Searches for related terms, such as “iOS” and “Galaxy Nexus” also aren’t included. But the chart provides a fairly accurate look at online interest in the platforms during the past six or seven years.)

Chart: Worldwide Smartphone OS Market Share, 1Q 2012Description: IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker provides smart phone and feature phone market data in 54 countries by vendor, device type, air interface, operating systems and platforms, and generation. Over 20 additional technical segmentations are provided. The data is provided four times a year and includes historical and forecast trend analysis. For more information, or to subscribe to the research, please contact Kathy Nagamine at 1-650-350-6423 or detail about this tracker can be found at: Author: IDCcharts powered by iCharts

It’s also interesting to compare these Google search numbers to the latest mobile OS market share stats. Android currently commands 59 percent of the overall mobile space, with iOS at 23 percent, Symbian at 6.8 percent and BlackBerry at 6.4 percent, according to the latest edition of IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Phone Tracker, released today. While Android has more than double the market share of iOS, many more Google users are searching for “iPhone.” And even though Symbian has slightly more market share than BlackBerry, very few Google users are searching the term “Symbian.”

Click the “View full report in Google Insights” button below the Google chart for many more related statistics.