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Droid Life’s Look Back At 2011 In Numbers

droid life numbers poll

We have a huge love for people’s opinions here at Droid Life, which most of you have gathered as participants in our well known reader polls.  Over the course of this year alone, we have posed about 70 different poll questions, asking that you share things like which devices you want, what features you need, and even what apps you can’t live without. As a community driven news outlet, there is not a better way for us to decide the direction of the site than through these polls. Plus, they are a ton of fun. At the end of 2011, we have reached 650,000+ total votes casted and more than 480,000 comments.  To us, those numbers are mind-numbing.

So down below we have gone ahead and pulled some of the top polls, charted them, and then presented them in a way that will give us all a look at what 2011 was all about. Who were the most popular manufacturers from one quarter to another? Are unlockable bootloaders important during the purchasing decision? Did any of our 2011 predictions come true?  Enjoy.

September 21, 2011                                                                        December 22, 2011

“What phone do you currently own?” It’s amazing to see how drastically a poll can change when a smartphone of the Galaxy Nexus’ significance comes out. Back in September, the smartphone pie was spread fairly evenly throughout a number of devices. As of December 22 and a week into availability of the Nexus, there is one phone that has taken over the DL community. You can read our full review of the Galaxy Nexus here.

Below we have the comparison charts for the DL community’s phone manufacturer of choice throughout 2011. Back in August, Motorola had a commanding lead over any other maker with HTC falling just short in 2nd place. But now, thanks to the Galaxy Nexus, Samsung appears to have shed it’s “cheaply made” stigma and stolen the top spot. It’s tough to tell exactly what this means, but my first instinct is to assume that bootloaders, open software, and the latest version of Android have a bigger role in hardware choice than the actual hardware.

August 22, 2011                                                                               December 27, 2011

All the way back in January we asked for your 2011 predictions. What would be the story of the year? Verizon’s new 4G LTE network? Honeycomb tablets? iPhone finally on Big Red? All of our imaginations were running wild as CES was just wrapping up and we were on the verge of seeing a huge surge of dual-core devices coupled with astonishing data speeds. For the most part, the poll was pretty spot on other than most Honeycomb tablets flopping. LTE was clearly the talk of the town from quarter to quarter. Nice job, folks.



Along with all of the major polls we ran, we also asked a ton of other questions having to do with your smartphones. Questions ranged from what your preferred screen size was, if you used insurance, and even what your favorite keyboard is.

  

2011 also marked the year that Google introduced Google+ to be the next major competitor to go directly to battle with Facebook. After the initial “private” period, the service opened up to all, causing quite the reaction from readers and other tech minds alike. Were people actually using it? Did it stand a chance against Facebook? It seemed only fitting that we ask all of you.

“But what about the bootloader?!?”  How many times did we hear that question this year?  With Verizon and Motorola releasing device after device with locked bootloaders we could tell that people were starting to become depressed when thinking about the future of Android’s underground development.  So do the majority of Android owners really want their bootloaders unlocked? This poll should give you the clearest answer.

And in one last semi-poll, we still had time to create a massive list of the top 25 apps from 2011 posts for all of our app junkies. We covered the top games, utilities, and everything in between in this huge app roundup. Want to check it out? Then click the picture below.

2012 and CES are right around the corner. Any predictions on what will make headlines? Possibly Jelly Bean? Quad-core phones? Let us know your predictions down below.

  • http://twitter.com/ThatsSpecific Seth Crain

    67% of us prefer a screen size that’s over 4in…

    The iPhone has a screen size of 3.5in; that is a failure.

  • Anonymous

    I hate to burst people’s bubbles, but was there any other sort of ‘confirmation’ or leak that suggests Google is marketing a Nexus type tablet other than the TRANSLATION from an Italian newspaper?

    Schmidt talks in maths to begin with, being interpreted from a foreign newspaper doesn’t give me any indication there will be a Nexus tablet. I still don’t believe Google cares all that much about tablets (yet).

  • Anonymous

    Google Tablet will be quad core, ICS, 1 GB RAM (maybe 2?) 16 GB on board with MicroSD card support, NFC, wifi, 5 MP rear camera 2MP front 1080p 10″ with a retail price of… $399.

    Now THAT is an iPad killer.

  • http://twitter.com/grilmasterweber kweber

    voice technology to compete with siri, windows 8, sgsIII, droid 4, maybe new moto phone with better camera and hd screen ?

  • Anonymous

    I think Samsung is gonna slam dunk this chart come spring. Unfortunately, it will be the unlocked and rooted SIII that is going to silently kill all the Nexus and Motoboys dreams. The SIII looks to have a 2ghz quad core chip, 2 gig ram, 10MP camera with 1080p, will ship with ICS on board, and has officially announced they will be pushing it at CES in Feb. Some rumors think it will sport the flexible Super Oled display. I doubt that. Either way, it is gonna blow the doors off the Nexus which has allready blown the doors off of MOTO.

    • Anonymous

      Agreed, the GSIII will be a monster. But the Nexus is a different type of device. It’s not built with the greatest specs anyway – in fact the GSII will prob beat it in most benchmarks.

    • IceBergLettuce

      Vaporware.

    • http://twitter.com/IAmRoosevelt The Roosevelt

      Yeah, but it’s not like Verizon’s ever going to get it anyway, so all we really have is the Nexus.

  • Anonymous

    I expect Motorola to show off an amazing phone that make all current phones look like old news.  Verizon will finally release it ten months later right before Google releases a new Nexus.

  • Anonymous

    so…did motorola have a commanding lead, or did htc fall just short?

  • Anonymous

    I can’t believe Tim put in the BS chart showing that everyone bought a nexus. That poll was so skewed its not even funny.

    • http://www.droid-life.com Tim-o-tato

      Just so I know, what do you think is skewed about it?

      The newest of the two had 20,000 votes. 
      The one from Sept. had 15,000 votes. 

      Is that how it was skewed? I just want to be on the same page with you. All we did was take the data we accumulated and then assembled it in the little pie charts. 

      • Anonymous

        Everyone voted for the GNex like two or three times, it’s a fact!!1!1!!!!one!!1! :s

        • Anonymous

          okay – and what’s the problem? What’s wrong with people wanting and liking the Nexus??

          • Anonymous

            Nothing–I own a GNex and I’m quite happy with the phone.  I was being sarcastic and poking fun at the whole thing.  I figured “!!1!1!!!!one!!1! :s” was enough to get that part of the post across.  Guess not.

        • Anonymous

          First, how do you know they voted two or three times? Second, I voted for the Nexus once because it is my current device.

          • Anonymous

            Sorry, I thought “!!1!1!!!!one!!1! :s” was enough to show sarcasm and poking fun at the original commenter.

      • Anonymous

        It was skewed just like most of these polls can be skewed by people voting more than once just to drive the numbers up but when the voting was done there was absolutely no way all the voters for the gnex actually had one in their hands.

        • Anonymous

          Whether the people that voted physically owned one or not is irrelevant. The question could have easily been worded as “What’s your favorite current phone?”. In Dec 2011 the GNex had the highest votes.

          What difference does it make? Did the device YOU OWN have to be #1? Why are non-GNex owners so upset??

          • Anonymous

            Your last question is the same thing I’ve been trying to figure out.  It’s absurd that so many people are angry over the phone.  It’s just a phone.  Popularity of the device certainly doesn’t make the owner any better or worse off in life.  What’s important is whether the owner of the phone is happy with his or her purchase.  If you own a GNex and you’re happy, great.  If you own some other phone and you’re happy, great.  If you don’t get why some other phone is popular, what does it matter?  Not a whole lot.  For that matter, what does showing the response to polls matter?  It’s just fun data at the end of the day.

          • Anonymous

            Exactly – I didn’t see catch on to your sarcasm – so I guess we agree.

            Who cares – any poll that involves a phone to choose is always going to be the best phone available at the moment. Take another poll in 4 months and see how many choose the GNex then. Who cares?

          • Anonymous

            Now that was the answer I was looking for. People take these polls as gospel yet they are just for fun or just to see what is on everyones minds. Everyone seems to think these sites speak the truth yet jump on kellex when he gets something wrong. I almost think every article should have a rumor tag on it to make sure people don’t think it is true.

          • Anonymous

            But it wasn’t. Thanks for proving my point. Everyone just voted for it because it was the nexus, not that it was their current phone. Hell reading the comments on the post should prove that from people saying they voted for it yet didn’t have the phone yet.

            No, my phone had no chance of being on top and I really don’t care who wins….I just care when Jed is trying to pull another fast one in FL.

          • Anonymous

            Okay, and again I ask – so let’s say people voted because it’s the most popular (for argument’s sake) – what’s the difference? Why is it a problem??

          • Anonymous

            I don’t get how this is pulling a fast one.  Let’s assume for a moment that the entire poll was a sham.  What harm does that ultimately cause in your life? 

            This post  only presents the raw data collected and offers up what Tim-o-tato surmised from the data .  There’s not even a statistical analysis to show any significance of the data collected.  All this data may statistically prove nothing (I’m not about to pipe all this into SPSS to figure it out).  At best, we can look at the data as anecdotal evidence that the readers of this site like phones with the latest OS that are easily hacked and cracked. I don’t see how this poll is so offensive.  I’ve read the post three times now and I don’t see anything that goes beyond suggesting that the readers of the site voted in a poll and the results say items X and Y scored higher than items A and B. 

            Why does the popularity of something make you so upset?  It shouldn’t.  It’s just a material thing and it’s popularity shouldn’t actually have any impact on your life unless you’re in the business of making or selling smartphones.

    • Anonymous

      How is the poll skewed. I’m confused by your comment. There’s no way to skew it. It was a simple question – what is your current device. 42% of the 20,000 people who responded said they had a Nexus. It’s as simple as that and not the least bit surprising considering it’s the phone running the latest OS and is easily unlocked/rooted.

      • Anonymous

        People voted for a phone they did not own just to drive up the numbers.

        • Anonymous

          First, how do you know this? Did you visit the homes of every voter to confirm they own the Nexus. Second, why would someone want to lie just to drive up the numbers? What would this accomplish? Third, why does it matter so much to you? Are you upset that your phone didn’t win? Or are you jealous that you’re stuck with an inferior device? Lastly, why can’t it be that 8,000 readers actually bought the Nexus? Why is this so impossible that readers of this site – a site that writes often about rooting, unlocking, and hacking Android – would be drawn to the first device released in over two years to actually cater to the Android development community?

          • Anonymous

            Because I have been in this site long enough to know that most of the people on here are whiny little kids that are just pissy that their mommy didn’t buy them the phone they wanted. If I believed that this was what everyone had, I would not say anything. The Nexus is a good phone and I don’t debate that, however it is not the end all, be all of phone technology that most seem to want to say it is.

          • Anonymous

            Sounds like you’re one of these pissy little whiny kids you speak of

          • Anonymous

            Lol! If only….life would be so much easier.

          • Anonymous

            +1 to that. 

  • Anonymous

    CES:
    -I see Asus pushing the Pad Phone again at CES.
    -I see a lot of wearable Android
    -Maybe even some home Automation (Lighting Science, etc)
    -More car tech (networking)
    -More Thunderbolt (PCs)
    -Windows 8 tablets (sorry)

    • Lmrojas

      I just got my prime un the mail, I wouldn’t hesitate to trade it in for a worthy Windows 8 tab ( I own a Macbook air and a PC I built my self so im not by any means a fan boy)

      • Anonymous

        WIn8 tabs will be better once they get rid of the traditional desktop “app” and expand upon metro

  • QtDL

    HOLY PIE CHARTS!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-C-Powell/739663293 David C. Powell

    My prediction:  Nexus tablet specs will be officially released at CES, and then both the new Nexus tablet and the next gen Nexus phone hardware timelines will be announced at Google I/O.

    • Anonymous

      Not sure on the mystical Nexus tablet, but I don’t think the next Nexus phone will be announced at Google I/O. 

      I/O is a developer’s conference. The only hardware you’ll see there will be the Nexus phones given out for free to the audience.

    • EC8CH

      I’m very interested in hearing about the Nexus tablet and 2012 updates to the Sammy G-Tab.

      I think the middle of next year we will have three great choices for Android tablets, Prime, Nexus, G-Tab, just like we had three great choices for Android phones on Verizon at the end of this year.

  • A.M.

    I wonder how the poll on screen size would turn out now.

    When the biggest screen people see is 4.3″, they’re going to hesitate selecting anything much bigger as better. Without people getting to experience a full range of sizes, they can’t know their true preference, if there were complete choice. Customers often don’t know they want something until they’re offered it.

    Considering that so many people switched over to the Nexus, a 4.5″ or 4.65″ screen isn’t a big deal, if not an asset in itself. 

    Personally, I’d love for Verizon to bring over the Samsung Note, a Galaxy II phone with a 5.3″ screen.  Maybe most people will decide that that is way too big, but it’s good to have options. I can’t stand people saying “4.5” is too big.” For who? Speak for yourself.

    • Flyinion

      The only reason the 4.65 works for me at least on the Nexus is that when I’m doing something that should take the full screen like a video, the soft keys hide.  If I had a physical row of keys like the other phones, a 4.65″ screen on top of that would be too big IMO

  • Anonymous

    jelly bean at CES???

    • Anonymous

      99% doubtful – Google I/O in June most likely

      • Anonymous

        I agree, I think they’ll move to a once a year update system. Especially with manufacturers pushing their upgrade dates so far out. 6 months is painful.

        • Anonymous

          It’s painful but it’s also a huge reason for Android’s torrent evolution pace since 1.0. I think it would help OEMs – but then again, you don’t hear Google openly saying they ‘encourage’ skinned UIs of Android – of course it’s open-“ish” so they won’t reject it either (at least not publicly).

          But certainly if you’re a GNex owner you can just feel how much Google wanted to upgrade the UI. I can’t imagine OEMs would skin too much of it moving forward. So in a way I don’t see Google slowing down. 

          They can’t afford to slow down, they need to keep up the pace (IMO). 

  • TheRobotCow

    I wonder if a Droid Nexus will be in the works for 2012?
    Moto hardware with the power of nexus!

    • Anonymous

      I doubt it – for one reason. Motorola doesn’t have the same global presence a company like Samsung does, particularly for Android handsets. You can even argue that Moto doesn’t even have a presence on non-Verizon US carriers, let alone globally.

      • EC8CH

        and you have to wonder what Google wants to do with the Nexus line.

        Do they want to keep and build upon the same design? If so it’s going to be hard to jump manufacturers every year.  Or will they abandon the current design that’s been refined from the Nexus S to the G-Nex and start from scratch.

        My dream would be that every android manufacture would have the option to release a Nexus device at the same time every time a new version of android is released.  How awesome would that be for consumers.

        • Anonymous

          Yeah that would be kick-ass, but in a way I think GOOG needs just one flagship phone. The Nexus was (I think) designed to be a “guide” for other OEMs to copy, but by looking back at the Nexus One and the S I never saw  other phones designed around them. I don’t think Google cared much about the OG before it was released, hence the N1 – I think they quickly turned their heads when they saw how popular it became and so quickly.

          I would love to see a Moto Nexus, but honestly outside Big Red they’re almost irrelevant in mobile phones. Google wants a global presence, and right now only Samsung is kicking a$$ globally ($$ intended).

          • Anonymous

            Maybe lg will be the next nexus cuz they are the ones that need help now. Google wants to keep the ecosystem healthy.

          • Anonymous

            That would be the nice guy approach but come on; If it don’t make dollars it doesn’t make sense. 

          • http://www.facebook.com/TJHRULZ tjhrulz

            Your right, HTC makes sense :P

  • http://twitter.com/Pollita_Droid Erica M.

    Congrats Samsung Galaxy Nexus for winning the popularity contest. While the Galaxy wins for being  pure android the camera is lacking and it feels cheap. Verzion’s choice to push out a ASOP phone every two to three years is smart because first was the Motorola Droid which was amazing and they saw how much people enjoyed so they held off on pushing another non skinned phone for a while, so this one comes along and it wins the popularity contest by a thousand. Perhaps if Verizon would stop rushing and half assing phones they could actually have a solid phone and then people wouldn’t have to change their phones like their underwear. 

    • EC8CH

      “it feels cheap”
      no

      • Anonymous

        It’s like arguing with a 5 year old at this point. It definitely doesn’t feel cheap and the camera is OK, not stellar, not garbage, just OK.

    • Azndan4

      It feels better than my droid, droid x, thunderbolt, incredible 2, and bionic did. Have you actually used the phone for more than ten minutes or are you just going off of what people post in forums and blogs?

    • Anonymous

      The GNex isn’t cheap feeling, at all actually. 
      The camera is decent, but why is a camera so important to everyone all of a sudden?

    • Anonymous

      I really don’t get why you’re using the term “popularity contest.” It doesn’t really apply in this situation. It’s not being elected to any high held position or place of office. It’s a phone that people bought because it’s what they wanted. People bought it and love it even after hating other Samsung devices and saying they’d never own another. That has to say something about its quality.

      I think we all get it, you don’t like it. Maybe you do like it but you have to find a reason to hate it because your contract wasn’t up for upgrade and you don’t want to pay full retail. Either way, opening up your argument with a statement about how “cheap” it feels(which couldn’t be farther from the truth) make you seem bitter.

      • http://twitter.com/Pollita_Droid Erica M.

        Bitter? No not bitter. More less tired of every month a new phone coming out and is all the rage until next month. All these phones seemed rush in one way or another. 

        • EC8CH

          I thinks that’s because of the incredibly short product cycle of the cell phone market. Innovation in that industry is more rapid than almost any other tech sector, that along with the contract renewal cycle that gives people incentives to upgrade every 20 months pushes all the product releases.

        • Anonymous

          I can definitely understand that. I think most of that can be placed squarely on Motorola though.

          I agree with you that it’s a little out of control on the release dates lately but the Nexus phones can’t be held in the same category. They are always released yearly.

          EC8CH is right that the cycle is really short, I think there should be a middle ground where the products are developed a little more, and the components are a little more cutting edge for their release date.

          2 flagship devices per year per manufacturer(more if it’s slider vs slate, or just release the same device in slider and slate forms)

          When the second device is released the older one gets pushed down to 2nd tier, consumer market. 3rd level, entry devices, would be the ones that are a year old at least. It would make Android a better experience for everyone and it would help updates roll out in a timely manner.

    • Anonymous

      Another Butt hurt Bionic owner.

  • Core

    impressive charts.
    think they get the picture ?

    dear moto.. no blur and unlock the bootloaders please.

    • Anonymous

      Dear Moto KEEP Blur and unlock the bootloaders. 

      • Gunther

        No Blur, No locked Bootloaders, Stock Android FTW! Get it Moto, Thanks…

        Oh yeah, and don’t listen to Pedobear Kixofmyg0t

      • Anonymous

        Offer blur as a option that’s downloaded, or at least can be uninstalled.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-C-Powell/739663293 David C. Powell

          agreed Timoh!  I am sure I am in the minority here, but I actually enjoy blur on my Bionic, but it would also be nice to have it not ‘in the way’ when it comes to software updates if we could uncouple it from the OS, that way we might see “pure” ICS in 2 / 3 months, instead of the 5 /6 (predicted) if they could be tested and developed independently from each other. I would also prefer an ‘HTC’ like approach as well to give *me* the option of unlocking my bootloader as I see fit, I am an adult, allow *me* to decide if I want to void my warranty… feel free to track it, report it to Verizon, etc. just give me the option of doing it, I will take the consequences if I brick my device.

          • Anonymous

            If the bootloader is unlocked, does Blur really matter?  I mean, we could just install custom roms with ease at that point, or at least a vanilla AOSP build. 

          • Anonymous

            Custom ROMs are awesome but they have their own bugs most of the time. Plus some people do care about warranty issues. You should have to root to get stock android.

  • EC8CH

    G-Nex took over Droid-Life like Android took over the smartphone market…

    and it only took 7 days to hit those numbers.

    Whether you like the G-Nex or not… that is impressive.

    • Anonymous

      +1

    • Anonymous

      +2

      • EC8CH

        and you can’t give all the credit for the G-Nex’s success on DL to Kellex’s Hypebeastin’

        he’s done that before but never with such impressive results :-P

        • Anonymous

          Now that was funny. ha!

  • Lmrojas

    Even tho my droid x was locked, thank .you foe introducing me to Android

    • Lmrojas

      Dam though, the keyboard was never any good as you can see in my post above lol

  • Franzie3

    I wouldn’t mind seeing more manufacturers (eh-hem Motorola) unlocking bootloaders how HTC is doing it.  

    Some more feature enhancements to ICS would be nice in the forms of 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, etc etc.  

    Maybe another Nexus device on Verizon (wishful) to keep up with the hardware specs.  It doesnt necessarily have to be a brand new design, just bump the current nexus with a quad core and maybe  upgraded memory or something, just so we always have a pure google device to look forward to.

  • http://twitter.com/FatherAllan13 allan

    ;)

  • http://twitter.com/FatherAllan13 allan

    They better not talk Jelly Bean until some of the kinks in ICS are worked out!

    • Anonymous

      I will say, though – that Google responds very quickly to bugs. I opened a bug this morning and in a few hours it was already assigned to someone and we were exchanging notes on how I discovered it. That’s awesome. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000017250612 Alex Drum

    first :D

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000017250612 Alex Drum

      NNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO DAMN YOU ALLAN