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Android phones to top 1B by year's end, Eric Schmidt says

Google's chairman likewise predicts that number of smartphones using the operating system will total 2 billion within another year or two.

Google Chairman Eric Schmidt talks about Android at the AllThingsD mobile conference.
Maggie Reardon/CNET

One billion people will be using Android smartphones within the next six to nine months, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt predicted today, noting the operating system continues gaining traction across the globe.

Schmidt, speaking during the AllThingsD mobile conference in New York, also said there will be nearly 2 billion Android phones within a year or two. Currently, there are more than 750 million Android phones in use across 320 carriers and 160 countries, Schmidt said, and there are 1.5 million sales or activations of Android every day.

"Android is by far the primary vehicle by which people are going to see smartphones," Schmidt said. "Our goal is to reach everybody."

He noted that falling prices will help boost Android in the market, with devices expected to touch $75 to $100. Most of those devices will come from Asian manufacturers, including Samsung, Schmidt said.

Schmidt was asked about how he thinks about Samsung, which dominates sales of Android phones.

"We spend lots of time with Samsung, and we have a very good relationship with them. They have hundreds of millions of phones on Android platform. You won't see much of a change there. We want as many competitors as possible," Schmidt said. "The Samsung relationship turned out to be a defining one. They made a tough decision to go with Android.

He reiterated that Google established Android as an open source platform, not as a proprietary Google platform. "We are phenomenally happy people are extending Android," he said. "You can't have half open source."