Google Apps Catching Up with Apple (GOOG, AAPL, WMT, XOM, MSFT)


Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) recently claimed to be activating 1.3 million Android-based smartphones every day. All those phones need apps from Google's Play (apps) store, and the company announced on its blog today that indeed customers are snagging those apps. More than 25 billion to be exact.

Google says there are 675,000 apps available through Play, a number in the same neighborhood as the 700,000 apps claimed by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) at its Apps Store. Apple said in March that it had passed 25 billion apps downloads. In the handset wars, Google claimed about 500 million smartphone activations earlier this month to Apple's 400 million (as of June). The release of the iPhone 5 certainly will add to Apple's tally, but with so many handset vendors offering Android-based phones Google likely has a permanent lead here.

To celebrate the milestone, Google is offering by offering a huge selection of apps for just $0.25 apiece for each of the next five days. That ought to drive apps downloads even higher.

In another milestone for the search giant, investment advisor Bespoke Investment Group said today that Google is now the fifth-largest U.S. firm measured by market cap ($249 billion), right behind Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) at $251 billion. Apple is numero uno at $644.6 billion, followed by Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM) at $424 billion and Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) at $257.4 billion.

And of the top five, Google is by far the youngest, having become a public company in August 2004. Search - still the web's killer app.

Paul Ausick

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Consumer Electronics, Internet, Large Cap Stocks, Software Tagged: AAPL, GOOG, MSFT, WMT, XOM