Android’s native web browser can now lay claim to being the most popular mobile browser, according to StatCounter’s latest survey. Mapping use over the past year, Google’s mobile internet browser has grabbed around 23 percent of all users, up from just over 14 percent back in February 2011. The phone and tablet-based browser may have soaked up BlackBerry and Nokia users on its way to the top, with the two companies dropping browser share to six and 11 percent, respectively. Opera continues to hold its own, with a stable market share of around 21 percent throughout 2011, while the iPhone’s Safari isn’t far behind, notching up 20 percent by the end of last month. Conspicuous by its absence, Windows Phone’s Internet Explorer hasn’t made the table just yet and Google is surely hoping to see its mobile version of Chrome enter the table soon — presumably once it’s available on more than one device.
Say goodbye to the Android Market. Google has officially rebranded the storefront today as they unveiled Google Play, the all-in-one destination for apps, books, and movies. A post on the Android Developers blog tells us that we’ll soon be getting updates on our 2.2+ handsets which will replace the Android Market app with Google Play. In essence nothing changes for the seasoned Android user, and the experience will remain untouched. Head to market.android.com and watch as you’re already redirected to the new website with a familiar layout.
Although it gets rid of the “Android” aspect of the Market, we applaud the decision to go less platform-centric for content. “Get it on Google Play” rolls off the tongue and will help push a larger agenda forward for Google. It also makes sense if we consider that Google has a hardware device up their sleeves as it should play music and/or other media.
Read more about Google Play here.