**Editor's note: Please click here for our list of October's hottest selling smartphones to see the showdown between the iPhone and its closest Android competitors..**
Google's Android operating system, estimated to control more than half of market share in many recent studies, will once again have to take a backseat to Apple and its iconic iPhone, at least for now.
Numbers from consumer researcher Kantar Worldpanel ComTech show that enormous sales of the iPhone 5 – which went on sale in late September – were enough to move the Apple mobile operating system (iOS) back into first place in the U.S. Its market share was 48.1 percent, compared to Android's 46.7 percent, in the 12-week period ending Oct. 28 — not bad when you consider that there's only one phone that runs on iOS and dozens, if not more, that use Android. That leaves only 5 percent for BlackBerry, Windows Phone and others struggling to compete with the two most dominant operating systems in America – and on the planet.
“The last time we saw iOS overtake Android in the U.S. was when the iPhone 4S was released and Apple managed to retain its lead for three consecutive periods," said Dominic Sunnebo, global consumer insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech. "This time we predict that Apple will beat its previous high of 49.3 percent and achieve its highest ever share of the U.S. smartphone market within the next two periods."
Kantar Worldpanel says Android is still king in Europe, accounting for nearly 74 percent of sales in Germany and almost 82 percent in Spain during the period. Apple, however, is making gains in four of the five major European countries, with a particularly strong performance in Britain, where it holds almost a 33 percent share.
The researcher says the majority (62 percent) of iPhone 5 sales in the U.S. have been to existing owners wanting to upgrade. Apple also has benefited from Android users making the switch (13 percent).