If you thought that Apple was the all-conquering force in the UK mobile market, think again. Android is on the rise - at least, it is in Tesco stores.The supermarket giant claims that, in recent weeks, sales of Android smartphones have passed Apple iPhones for the first time. Prior to Christmas, Tesco Mobile's Apple iPhones outselling Android smartphones by two-to-one. But January saw a rapid increase in Android smartphone sales, creating 'like-for-like sales' and in February, Android smartphones overtook iPhone sales on the Tesco Mobile network.According to Tesco, the rise of Android smartphones is down to 'affordability', not least because of Tesco Mobile’s 'wide range of competitive deals' when it comes to Android handsets. That's is likely to be one reason. Go to your local Tesco and you are pretty much guaranteed to see a sign for a cheap Android contract deal, especially when it comes to the HTC Wildfire. On the other hand, try asking for an iPhone instore. More often than not, it's not in stock in the stores. Go to the website today and Tesco says it has 'very limited stock'. Marry those two together and you can see that sales of one are bound to rise in comparison to the other.Tesco Mobile also cites recent statistics released by industry analysts Gartner for Android growth. Those show global Android sales growing by nearly 900 per cent from 2009. Gartner also reported that 67.2 million Android-based units were sold in 2010, accounting for 22.7 per cent of the market.Graham Harris, Chief Executive Officer of Tesco Telecoms and Tesco Mobile comments: 'As one of the UK’s leading operators, these sales are a useful barometer for smartphone trends. There is a lot of choice in the market and as a result consumers are driving healthy competition between rival operating systems. Tesco Mobile prides itself on customer service and offering customers what they want, through a wide range of competitive deals on all platforms. In addition to competitive Android smartphone deals, we also offer iPhone on a variety of fantastic 12 month deals.''However, we commend this healthy competition between operating systems as we see this as helping to drive consumer choice and flexibility.'