Google’s Android may lose customers as Verizon sells iPhone

Google Inc’s business may be affected as Verizon Wireless begins selling Apple Inc’s iPhone, given the customers a fresh option to smart phones operating on the Android Operating System.

Verizon Wireless is all set to make an announcement regarding the inclusion of iPhone to its network in New York on Tuesday, according to a familiar source. Dan Hays, partner at management consultant firm PRTM, said that Verizon is expected to replace 2 million Android iPhone shipments order in a year.

Thousand of Verizon customers will prefer to go for iPhone over Android phones, and even its own Android users may switch over, said Gene Munster, an analyst in Minneapolis.

Apple Inc is expected to ship around 9 million iPhones in 2011 in collaboration with Verizon; apart from 11 million units through AT&T, the analyst said.

Android has emerged as a top-seller in the United States and accounts for 26 percent of the smartphone market as compared to 25 percent of the iPhone. RIM’s Blackberry is leading the race with 33 percent of the market.

In the first half of the year, several Android-based LTE-compatible phones are expected to be launched in the market. However, an iPhone with LTE network will take some time to be available, according to analysts.

Analysts view that Apple may perform better than Google as far as attracting Verizon users toward smartphones for the first time.