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Samsung Galaxy S II hits record sales, HTC follows suit

by Kristen Nicole

It’s a white hot summer for Android, with some of its latest devices setting sales records in these early days of July. Device makers Samsung and HTC are pleasantly plumped by phone sales, with HTC claiming an 88 percent increase from last year. The Taiwanese handset maker has seen a string of successes since creating Android’s first G1 device, though its sales have seen dips over the past three years as competition rises. HTC’s stock even dropped last month, with investors expecting the company to stop growing at their current pace. They’ve been proven wrong, and HTC’s upcoming lineup of smartphones and Honeycomb tablets could help keep the faith.

The highly anticipated Samsung Galaxy S II has also lived up to expectations, giving Android another reprieve as Apple holds back on releasing the iPhone 5. Three million Galaxy S II Android smartphones were sold in its first 55 days, beating the record for the original Galaxy S smartphone by 30 days. With over a total of 10 million original Galaxy S smartphones sold worldwide, hopes are high for the handset’s baby sibling. Already Samsung is looking to an international market for its Galaxy S II, marking most of its sales in Europe, Asia and Latin America. There’s no telling what records Samsung can break once it hits the U.S. market, reportedly slotted for a late July release.

Android faces an entire consortium of rivals

Android may be riding high on device sales, but the mobile OS faces several challenges from competitors and lawsuits. Last week’s omission of Google as a winner of the recently released Nortel patents means Google faces steeper obstacles towards maintaining dominance with Android’s platform. The gaggle of opposition united Microsoft, Apple, EMC and RIM against Google, keeping it from patents that supposedly could help Android’s defense in the courtroom. With Oracle and Microsoft going after Android via patent infringement suits, losing out on Nortel is a dismal development in Android’s story. It’s not Google’s nature to take it lying down -- some pundits expect antitrust lawsuits from the Android OS maker, though the consortium of rivals could very well take Google to court as well.

Google’s also looking to infiltrate other mobile platforms with its latest social cloud service, Google+. The accompanying app enables Android users to sync content and access private social circles, but gaining a mobile presence on iOS devices is another story. Google+ is awaiting Apple App Store approval, a process by which Apple is notorious for booting services that compete with its own products. With a web interface and a swelling of early adopter support, Google+ is another jab at Apple’s upcoming iCloud, which will also sync content across devices.