Internet marketing service providers may be interested by new data that shows the Android operating system (OS) has become the most popular smartphone platform, ahead of Apple's iOS.

The study by Canalys showed Android-equipped devices now account for over 43 per cent of the US market.

This means developing software for the system is a must for any marketers looking to increase their mobile advertising reach, according to Tameka Kee, writing for Econsultancy.

A mobile app plan focusing solely on Apple will therefore "ultimately be incomplete", she said, adding "a diversified mobile strategy is key".

Android, which was acquired by Google in 2005 as a small start-up venture, was described recently by the company's vice-president of corporate development as "our best deal ever".

While some people have commented the large variety of handsets on which the OS appears may make it difficult to produce a specifically targeted ad campaign, Ms Kee observed that not taking advantage of the surge in growth would be a "grave marketing offence".

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