Businesses gobbling up Google Android smartphones, ChangeWave finds

60% more corporate IT buyers say they're buying Android smartphones since May, ChangeWave says

Companies are increasingly spending their smartphone dollars on Google Android devices, at least in part at the expense of RIM BlackBerry devices, according to ChangeWave’s latest numbers. 

Companies are increasingly spending their smartphone dollars on Google Android devices, at least in part at the expense of RIM BlackBerry devices, according to ChangeWave Research’s latest numbers

Some 1,600 corporate IT buyers were asked which mobile operating system they currently provide, and while RIM BlackBerry dominated in August with 66%, that was down 3% since May. Google Android, meanwhile, jumped from 10% to 16%, and was only at 3% back in November. (Read a story on people who have switched from BlackBerry to Android.) In other words, 60% more corporate IT buyers said they're going with Android smartphones.

HTC and Motorola are among the hardware manufacturers enjoying Android’s success, with both experiencing considerable demand increases since May. For example, roughly 10% of ChangeWave survey respondents in May said they planned to buy HTC smartphones (such as the Droid Incredible and EVO 4G) during the next quarter, while 16% said in August they expect to do so over the next quarter.

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Android has also been riding a momentum wave of positive survey results and new product rollouts.

ComScore’s latest numbers show that Android has surpassed Windows Mobile in the U.S. market to rank third among smartphone operating systems. Separately, Gartner issued a report stating Android will beat out the BlackBerry and Apple’s iOS for second best selling mobile operating system worldwide only behind Nokia’s Symbian.(Speaking of which, an outgoing Nokia exec had some choice words about Android this week, saying Android handset makers are like kids peeing in their pants for temporary warmth in the winter.)

Google recently reported that Android adopters are (not surprisingly) increasingly using its newer operating systems, including the 2.2 version dubbed Froyo. Version 2.2 is becoming available on more phones, including the new Droid X as of today. 

Back to ChangeWave’s survey, Apple iPhone rose from 30% to 31% and Windows Mobile, which is soon to be replaced by Windows Phone 7, fell from10% to 9%.

Andrew Jaquith, a Forrester Research senior analyst, said in a recent interview with Network World that he thinks Android is still largely at the point where it is being brought into companies from the bottom up, as opposed to through CEOs and other high-level executives, as has been the case with Apple iPhones. Questions remain over whether Android has the security chops big companies will require, though more and more third-party services are emerging to address such needs.

Overall, 35% of respondents told ChangeWave they plan to buy smartphones next quarter, down 1% from the May survey.

Follow Bob Brown on Twitter at www.twitter.com/alphadoggs

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