What starts with A, and will be the leading smartphone platform by 2016? If you guessed Apple, you are wrong!

In fact, Android has been forecasted to dominate 38% of the smartphone market, and will overtake Apple’s share by two times. Growth in the Asia-Pacific region will be most rapid, with over 200 million phones to be sold by 2016. This will account for 30% of the global smartphone shipments. Ovum, an independent telecoms analyst also predicts that 32% of Asia-Pacific will be using the technologically- advanced mobile handsets.

“We will see dramatic shifts in dominance for smartphone software platforms, with Android storming into the lead with 38 per cent market share, compared to Apple iOS’ 19 per cent, by 2016 in AP alone. The success of the Android platform is being driven by the sheer number of hardware vendors supporting it at both the high and low ends of the market,” says Adam Leach, principal analyst at Ovum.

Windows and Blackberry will follow respectively, with 22% and 9% in market share. However, the report also advices that more platforms will be added to the consideration set, making the smartphone market an even more competitive playing field.

Leach says: “We expect at least one other platform to achieve mainstream success within the forecast period. This could be an existing player in the market such as Bada, WebOS, or MeeGo, or it could be a new entrant to the market place.”

For marketers and advertisers, this presents a new level of creativity, interactivity and sophistication that is not usually possible on less highly specified feature phones, according to Eden Zoller, Principal Analyst of Ovum in London.

"Smartphones have capabilities that can support a richer mobile advertising experience that is pleasing to both brands and consumers. The dramatic growth in the smartphone market also provides the increasing reach and scale that advertisers crave," says Zoller.