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Android runs smartphones from a number of brands, including Samsung. ((Wally Santana/Associated Press))

Google's Android operating system now runs more new smartphones than any other platform.

Android overtook Nokia's Symbian platform — which had previously been the top smartphone operating system for a decade — in the fourth quarter of 2010, with shipments of 32.9 million, reported Canalys, a technology market research firm headquartered in Reading, U.K.

Nokia trailed with 31 million shipments, but it remained the top smartphone brand worldwide, as Android runs smartphones from a number of brands, including HTC, Acer, Samsung and LG.

None individually had enough sales to claim the top spot, but shipments from each of those brands did jump three-fold to 40-fold over the past year.

Canadian smartphone market share by platform

Vendor

Share

BlackBerry

38.0%

Android

28.5%

iOS

20.7%

Symbian

4.8%

Others

8.0%

Source: Canalys estimates

Overall, the worldwide smartphone market grew to 101.2 million units in the last quarter — up 89 per cent from the same quarter the year before, Canalys reported.

In the Canadian market, Waterloo, Ont.-based Research in Motion's BlackBerry was both the top brand and the top operating system.

Android was by far the most popular platform in the U.S., with shipments of 12.1 million units. However, no one brand of Android phones shipped more units than RIM, which was the top-selling smartphone brand in the U.S. It reclaimed the top spot from Apple in the United States and overtook Nokia in Latin America.

Nokia's phones remained the most popular in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.