back to article Google activates half million Androids a day

Activations of Android-based devices now exceed half a million per day, and are growing by 4.4 per cent each week. This news comes via a triumphal Tuesday tweet from no less an Adroidophile than Google's mobile headman Andy Rubin. Google's Andy Rubin tweets that Android devices are now at 500,000 activations a day It's …


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  1. Fuh Quit


    I tried 4 different ROMs in my first two weeks of Androidness - do each count?

    Also, I fully expect RIM to move to a software solution within 6-12 months. If not, they will marginalise themselves.....and there is no security with a corporate-connected single-user device that is not a BlackBerry right now.

    Climb aboard or perish, I say.

    1. DrXym

      Did they have the marketplace app?

      If not then no.

      1. Fuh Quit
        Thumb Up


        they did.

        I should also come clean and admit that I used 3 Facebook profiles last month. None of which are mine.

  2. Danny van der Weide

    Phones, tablets, whatever... It's just maths, really!

    You make it sound like these numbers sound unrealistic, and therefore they must have scraped all possible Andriod devices together to make an interesting number.

    Since growth is 4.4% a week, and december 2010 is about half a year ago, which is 26 weeks, the sum goes something like this:

    1.044^26 - 1 = 2.06

    And 300000 * 2.06 makes about 619040... which is 'slightly' above 500000.

    Apparently the growth rate is still accelerating...

    So, there's no need for tables or googleTV boxes to reach these numbers.

  3. Bucky 2

    Broken phones

    Why do they need to activate a half million Androids every day? Why not simply activate them once and let them STAY activated?

    Just asking.

  4. spegru
    Black Helicopters

    What is this 'activation'?

    I've had/ been responsible for about 5 android phones: Never noticed any activation thing - I just switched em on and they worked! Same as my Archos 101 tablet that's not even a phone.

    On the other hand I had the misfortune to be asked to help set up a brand new Iphone4 - blinkin eck what a phaff! - having to install some dodgy app called 'itunes' on a PC first (lucky I kept that windows boot)

    Sound like there's some confusion between 'activation' and 'shipping' going on somewhere in google land....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      "I've had/ been responsible for about 5 android phones: Never noticed any activation thing"

      I haven't seen anything official but my guess is going to be: knows your device from when you enter your Google account, I imagine 1 activation = 1 device on

      So I have 3 Androids showing on market, so that's 3 activations to my single Google account.

    2. Graham Dawson Silver badge

      A N Other Title

      Linking your phone to a google account is probably what they mean. That would activate your access to various bits and bobs such as the marketplace and their handy information slurping servers.

      That sort of activation.

  5. Justin Clements


    Ice Cream Sandwich?

    Are Google being run by 5 year olds these days?

    It's one thing to have these fun sounding releases, but Ice Creamed Sandwich?

    Grow up ffs.

    1. heyrick Silver badge

      @ Justin Clements

      Named after sweet goodness, though I suspect certain letters will prove trickier than others to find (in)sane names for.

      FWIW - Google's CEO dies if J is anything other than Jello... ;-)

      1. Captain DaFt

        And what's wrong...

        With jelly babies? (Doctor recommended!)

  6. Synthmeister


    Why do they say "activations" instead of sales?

    And FYI, the iPhone alone is still generating more money than Google's entire business.

    1. Neill Mitchell


      "And FYI, the iPhone alone is still generating more money than Google's entire business."

      I don't think so. Perhaps you have some evidence to back that one up?

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Exponential growth?

    So, on the assumption we haven't been engulfed by bacteria or the world's resources haven't completely run out, in just over a year's time everyone in the world will have an Android device.

  8. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    In other news

    Microsoft rakes in more than $1M a day from Android activations.

    Bloody patents.

  9. Cameron Colley

    Anyone know how much Google makes from these devices?

    For Apple it's possible to work out mark-up on the device and for Microsoft we know they make money on most Android devices sold. But what do Google make? Obviously they make more than the cost of hosting the data centres to put up with this -- but how much more and what's the breakdown?

    I have no love for Apple, quite the oposite in fact, but they do seem to be the ones profiting most from smartphones at present.

  10. alun phillips

    Sales V Activations

    The reason for activations against sales, is an activation is in the hand of an end user a sale can be whatever you want it to be, just ask Steve Balmer.

    1. GrantB

      Sales vs Activation; Google don't sell phones

      Apple know exactly how many iPhones are paid for as they paid for them to be made. My guess is that there accounting/CRM systems would keep track of every serial number for every SKU and where they are in the sales pipeline. I would also guess they check everything connecting to iTunes, for any clones or unauthorised Taiwanese manufacturers ‘overruns’ .

      Microsoft charges their partners $n dollars for every phone shipped with their mobile OS’s so they know exactly how many have been made.. and would have reports showing just how many haven’t been sold.

      With Android, Google probably have some very good ideas of how many are made and sold via reports from partners like HTC, Motorola and Samsung.. but I see lots of very cheap Chinese ebook readers/mini tablets that are running some Android version without access to the Android market place. I suspect most of those, the hardware manufacturer has simply FTP’d down a copy of an Android source, compiled a version and sold the device without Google ever knowing.. at least until the user chooses to activate it (if they even do this). In short, Google don’t sell phones ( unlike Apple, Blackberry or Nokia) nor phone OS licenses (MS), so can’t count sales directly.

  11. Lyle Dietz

    Honeycomb on Galaxy Tab

    Where do I get that ROM? Mine's running FroYo...

    1. roy lovelock


      i think they mean the new galaxy tab 10.1 not the older tab (gt1000), btw mines on gingerbread.

  12. Mikel

    Google doesn't have to make money to win here

    @Cameron Colley Google only makes a few dollars on each device. That's not the point. If there were no Android, then Google would have to pay Apple more and more each quarter to keep being the default search engine and have their apps installed. Eventually Apple might be persuaded to Bing up their phones and shut Google out of the lucrative mobile search ad market.

    But there is Android, and anybody that Bings up their devices find in short order that consumers get to choose. And we like Google for search, yes we do.

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