Analyzing Google’s progress in the devices market

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Dec. 4 2020, Updated 10:52 a.m. ET

Google introduces new versions of Android

During the last six months, Google, Inc. (GOOG)(GOOGL) has taken clear forward strides in the mobile devices market.

For example, it introduced the Android One smartphone OS (operating system) specifically for price-sensitive markets like India. Market research firm IDC expects that the cumulative Android One shipments to India will surpass the 1 million mark by the end of this year, qualifying it as a successful launch.

In the last quarter, Google also launched Android Lollipop OS, its largest-ever release of Android. Android already dominates the smartphone OS market. And, with the help of Android One and Android Lollipop, Google aims to further strengthen its position.

Google also introduced a number of hardware devices in the last quarter, including the Nexus 6 smartphone, the Nexus 9 tablet, and Nexus Player for Android TV.

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Google looks to penetrate retail and enterprise segment with Chromebook

Chromebook sales are growing briskly. The devices are already popular in the education sector, and Google is looking to penetrate the retail and enterprise segment with them as well. Google recently announced that it will provide 1 TB (terabyte) of Google Drive space for free for two years to anyone who buys a Chromebook before the end of this year.

In the enterprise sector, Chromebooks are a threat to historically dominant Microsoft Corporation (MSFT). Apple Inc. (AAPL) is also seeing some momentum for iPads in the enterprise sector, but faces stiff competition from Chromebook, which is the cheaper option for enterprises looking to cut costs in this slow economic environment. BlackBerry Ltd. (BBRY) is already losing popularity among enterprise customers, which means it’s unlikely to challenge Apple, Microsoft, or Google in this space.

Google should gain share in the OS market

Google is leaving no stone unturned as it penetrates all segments of the devices market—smartphone, tablet, and PC. According to a report from research firm Gartner, and as the chart above shows, Android should continue to gain share in the devices market, going from 38% in 2013 to 52% in 2015. Microsoft Windows’ share should remain stagnant at around 14%, while Apple’s share should increase slightly from 10% to 12% during the same time period. All of the Google initiatives we’ve covered in this series should give fuel to Gartner’s forecast.

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