This morning I ran across an article on Digg about OSX 10.7 (which I’m pretty fired up about) – and it got me wondering…

What does OS usage look like on one of my more popular sites and what are the implications for the development community as it adapts to consumer use?

For stats I’m using one of my sites called RinkTime which is a directory site that helps skaters find rinks throughout North America. This year it’ll serve 5,000,000 visitors.

Anyhow, the best part of RinkTime vs. a lot of the other sites who report traffic, browser and OS numbers is that it’s audience really is middle-American families – and I think it demonstrates a pretty good cross spectrum of users – unlike a lot of sites who cater to a technical or business crowd.

So, here’s what we’ve got.

Starting with 2006

Microsoft Windows OS 2006 Operating System StatsDominance with a 94.48% visitor-share… Apple/Mac had just 5% of the visits and Linux a measly 0.18%.

2007 & 2008

2007 Operating System StatsAlso notice that PalmOS which registered 0.02% in 2007 and 0.05% in 2008 has disappeared. Blackberry which didn’t register until 2009 with 0.16% grew to 0.59% this year.

2008 Operating System StatsBut the BIG movers are the iPhone/iPod (and soon to register iPad) devices…

In 2007, the iPhone registered just 0.07% of our visitors. That grew to 0.62% in 2008 turning it into our 3rd most popular OS behind Microsoft and Apple in 2008.

2009 – The Year of Mobile

2009 Operating System Stats2009 was truly the Year of Mobile though in the US with the iPhone growing to 1.77% of our visitors and iPod growing to 0.53%. 2009 was also the year that Android debuted with 0.40% visitor-share.

2010 in Summary

2010 Operating System StatsThis year to date, January 1, 2010 through June 5, 2010 it looks like this…

Microsoft is still in the dominant position with 82.23%, but has taken a huge hit with Apple growing to over 10%. And when you combine Apple OS, iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, Apple owns over 14%. And Linux even being considered an “experts” OS (simplified) has doubled in use. (Most may not consider it being worth mention however I think that’s an important stat.)

Android is making gains on the iPhone visitor-share with a 1.33% share – iPhone usage has grown to a 3.07% share.

Trends – January vs. May, 2010

2010 Operating System Stats

Finally, lets look at January, 2010 vs. May, 2010 for a picture of today which we can use to establish a trend for mobile and Android‘s rapid growth due to Verizon’s adoption of the Android OS as well as the other carriers.

January vs. May 2010 Operating System Stats

The iPhone during the 1/2010 to 5/2010 still grew from 2.87% of our visitors to 3.16% (+0.29%) but the Android use grew from 0.99% to 1.79% (+0.8%). It’s all pretty interesting – but the bottom line is that when we build websites, we must be aware of the growth in activity of mobile – and design for these devices as well as the standard and ever changing OS environments.

In my next post, I’ll let you in on something big – the future of search….The ultimate measure that any and all search engines will use as a basis for who ranks for what…