Google's Android mobile software grabbed the lead in popularity over Research in Motion's Blackberry system, according to the latest industry statistics released Tuesday.
StatCounter.com, an online statistical service, said Android held a 15.2 per cent share of the mobile operating system market in the second month of 2011.
The improvement gave the Google-owned software company a small lead over RIM's older Blackberry system, which held a 14.5 per cent slice of the global market in the same month.
Android's monthly gain represented the first time the newer company had surpassed Blackberry in market share, StatCounter said.
Android's lead over RIM was even bigger in the crucial North American market, where the Google system held a 26.4 per cent in February versus Blackberry's 22.2 per cent.
More ominously, Android's gains show the technology upstart gaining speed in the rapidly growing mobile market.
"The momentum is certainly with Android, which has almost tripled its market share over the last 12 months from 5.4 per cent to 15.2 per cent," said Aodhan Cullen, StatCounter's chief executive officer.
Globally, Nokia's Symbian system holds the largest share of the mobile software market at 30.7 per cent while Apple Inc.'s iOS offering locked down the No. 2 spot worldwide at 24.6 per cent.
Interestingly, the Apple operating system has lost more than nine percentage points in market share in the global market during the past 12 months Cullen noted.