Mr. Page added that revenue from mobile devices, largely from use of its search engine on smartphones and tablets, is on pace to generate $2.5 billion over the next year. The figure is up from a $1 billion-a-year pace Google disclosed a year ago, thanks in large part to the proliferation of devices powered by Google’s mobile operating system, called Android. Mr. Page said more than 190 million Android devices, the vast majority of which come pre-installed with Google’s search engine, had been activated.
We all know and are excited about the promise of mobile. Mary Meeker‘s fantastic presentation from last fall showcased how the mobile internet and the gadget centric world that is oncoming is a tech trend far outpacing the speed and impact of the internet of the late 90’s. We’ve seen huge tectonic shifts in the mobile ecosystem with big moves from players including Google (buying Motorola Mobility), Microsoft (purchasing Skype), Amazon (releasing its Kindle Fire), and Apple (just being awesome).
But this announcement from Google has got to be a wakeup call to us all. Mobile is upon us. In a big way. And faster than I’d have expected.
This is a great development to see, as it shows that this huge market — mobile — now is developing a profit pool in a second key ecosystem. For the past several years, Apple has owned the profitable developer ecosystem. Apps were built and monetized principally through Apple’s ecosystem. It was great–Apple offered an ease of distribution unthinkable before the iPhone. But it had limitations–if Apple didn’t like what you were doing or if your model didn’t fit their approach you were SOL.
Android is much more open. Developers can experiment with all kinds of different business models and approaches, in ways that wouldn’t work anywhere near as well with Apple. The promise was great, but the reality was unclear: we all knew Android was out there, gaining traction, but we didn’t know its health as a developer platform. Well, this announcement should go a long way towards removing the doubt. Now Google’s Android platform is both broadly distributed and starting to generate money. This is a big announcement and its great for developers, investors and consumers in the mobile ecosystem.
- Google: 190M Android devices activated, mobile revenue run rate hits $2.5B (venturebeat.com)
- The unstoppable Android army (zdnet.com)
- Why Did Google Ignore Mobile in Its Earnings Report? (readwriteweb.com)