Well yes, it can. Probably not at the rate indicated by this graph, but it can still grow, if (and only if) mobile and portable tablet devices continue to offer Android as the default operating system for their products. But there seems no doubt that this will be the case in the short term. While Samsung’s bada operating system will make some inroads to the smart phone market in 2011 (mainly because Samsung have 17% of the worldwide mobile phone market), it probably won’t completely annihilate Android’s growth. Google have rather sensibly gone with Samsung as the manufacturer for its Nexus S phone, so Samsung won’t want to annoy Google too much by competing too hard on OS market share. And as more tablet devices come out with the Android OS, it’s likely that that pink line will keep moving in the same direction it’s currently heading.
Now sharp eyes will note that the above graph doesn’t show Q4 statistics for 2009. That’s because instead of releasing Q4 statistics in detail, Gartner chose to release only whole-year stats in February. But the pattern is still remarkable. Full data upon which this is based is accessible here: Q1 2009/10, Q2 2009/10, Q3 2009/10.