Android sales said to surpass iPhone

The NPD Group says U.S. sales of Android smartphones have surpassed Apple’s iPhone to take the second spot behind Research in Motion (RIM), with 28 percent of the market. Meanwhile, Sprint has joined Verizon in turning its back on Google’s Nexus One, says eWEEK.

According to the NPD Group, RIM’s BlackBerry operating system (OS) continues to lead the U.S. smartphone market with 36 percent of first quarter sales, but Android has supplanted Apple’s OS for the iPhone to take second position at 28 percent. Apple fell to third place at 21 percent, says the study.

Carrier distribution and promotion played a major role in Apple’s first-quarter drop relative to Android and RIM, suggest the NPD Group. “In order to compete with the iPhone, Verizon Wireless has expanded its buy-one-get-one offer beyond RIM devices to now include all of their smartphones,” stated Ross Rubin, executive director of industry analysis for NPD.

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