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In Tight Race for Smartphone Supremacy, Apple Leads by a Hair

Apple's iOS is the top smartphone platform, according to The Nielsen Company, but Android is growing faster.

In terms of smartphone supremacy within the United States, Apple holds the lead over Google and Research In Motion. But not by much, according to research published Monday by The Nielsen Company.

Based on November data, Google's Android OS was most popular among those purchasing a smartphone within the last six months, taking 40 percent of that market. In terms of overall consumer smartphone market share, however, Apple's iOS held the lead, with 28.6 percent of smartphone owners using an iPhone. RIM's BlackBerry OS held 26.1 percent of the market, with Android taking up 25.8 percent of the market. Nielsen notes that BlackBerry is within a margin of error that statistically could bring it to a tie with iOS for first place or Android for third.

Overall smartphone adoption clearly grew in 2010, according to Nielsen, which showed that in November alone, 45 percent of all consumers chose a smartphone over a feature phone.

The Nielsen Company did not indicate whether Microsoft's new Windows Phone 7 made much of a splash in the market since its debut last fall.

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