NEW YORK — Google’s Android software for mobile devices was running on 75 percent of smartphones shipped in the third quarter, as the company extended its lead over Apple, according to research firm IDC.
Apple’s iOS system, used in iPhones, was second with a market share of 15 percent. Apple’s new iPhone didn’t come out until late in the quarter, while Samsung Electronics Co. and other Android makers had major releases earlier.
A year ago, Android had just 58 percent to the iPhone’s 14 percent. Gains came largely at the expense of BlackBerry and Symbian phones, according to Thursday’s report.
“Android has been one of the primary growth engines of the smartphone market since it was launched in 2008,” said Ramon Llamas, a research manager for mobile phones at IDC. “In every year since then, Android has effectively outpaced the market and taken market share from the competition.”
Google makes its software available to phone makers for free. In doing so, Google wins prime placement for its services. Apple does not license iOS to others.
Companies making Android devices include Samsung, HTC Corp. and Motorola Mobility, which Google now owns.