Android device activations top 500 million

In advance of yesterday's iPhone press event, Google took the opportunity to announce an Android milestone: more than 500 million total activations.

In a Tuesday night tweet, Google mobile chief Andy Rubin announced, "there have been half a billion android activations to date, with over 1.3m added every day."

That's up from the 900,000 daily activations reported in June. Back in February, just prior to Mobile World Congress, Rubin confirmed that Android activations were at 850,000 per day. Things have been moving rather quickly for the Google-owned mobile OS. In December, activations were at 700,000 per day - on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day alone, there were 3.7 million Android activations, which helped contribute to the 1.2 billion iOS and Android apps that were downloaded between 25 December and 31 December.

News of the most recent Android stats follows Google executive director Eric Schmidt's appearance at the Motorola Razr event last week, where he said that the installed user base of Android devices was at 480 million, but quickly approaching the 500 million mark. Approximately 70,000 of those devices are tablets, according to Schmidt.

The Android approach "has produced ... an eco-system of enormous global scale," Schmidt said. "To me, that's why Google needed to have Motorola be a part of it."

Google officially closed its $12.5 billion (£7.8 billion) acquisition of Motorola Mobility in May, and last week's event - which included the debut of three new Motorola Razr smartphones - was the search giant's first joint event with Motorola.

"We have to play in this eco-system, too," Schmidt said at the time. "We have to be competitive."