It’s too bad that Google’s business model isn’t to charge for the Android operating system — because it’s selling like hotcakes.
Google (NSDQ: GOOG) CEO Eric Schmidt told The Guardian in an interview that the company is now activating 160,000 Android phones a day, up from only 100,000 a day in mid-May — indicating a monthly growth rate of 60 percent. At this rate, *Google* is activating 4.8 million devices a month and nearly 15 million a quarter. The trajectory is astounding considering that it was activating only 60,000 a day in February, but still pales in comparison to *Apple,* which reported 600,000 iPhone 4 orders in a single day last week.
Google will have to sell a lot of phones for its business model to be successful. Rather than selling the OS to handset manufacturers, like Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT), or selling the hardware and software as a package, like RIM (NSDQ: RIMM) and Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) do, it is giving the platform away for free and banking on making money through advertising in its related products, such as search. It’s also sharing those revenues with both carriers and handset makers.
Outside of handset sales, Schmidt also said Android has made progress with the number of applications it supports. Schmidt: “We’ve also seen a growth in the number of apps available for Android