Google sees Android sales soar

About 200,000 smartphones and other devices based on Google’s Android operating system are sold every day, according to CEO Eric Schmidt.

Google sees Android sales soar

The claim is underscored by figures from industry tracker NPD that said Android had leapfrogged RIM as the smartphone software of choice, with one third of all phones sold in the US based on Android, pushing RIM devices (28%) into second place, with Apple’s iPhones (22%) back in third.

The success of Android will come as a welcome boost to Google, which is seeking new revenue opportunities as growth in its core internet business slows and technologies such as smartphones and social networking services transform the way consumers use the web.

According to Schmidt, revenue from search advertising on mobile phones will eventually exceed the revenue Google generates from PC searches, but he could not predict when.

“It looks like Android is not just phenomenal but an incredibly phenomenal success in its growth rate,” he said.

Social networking

Schmidt said Google was now focused on integrating social networking features into its online products, but would not comment on reports it is building a service to compete with Facebook or partnering with social gaming firms such as Zynga.

“There have been a whole bunch of leaks, some that have been correct, some that have not been correct. In general, it’s better to not talk about unannounced products,” Schmidt said. “In general, we always believe that our products would be better with more social signals.”

Analysts say games could be Google’s ticket into the social networking arena, as Google seeks to overcome a string of lacklustre initiatives that have left it on the sidelines of the booming web 2.0 market.

The comments came on the same day the company pulled the plug on Google Wave.

Schmidt said Wave did not “get enough traction” but that the company would apply some of its features to forthcoming products.

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