android-260Mashable: Today marks exactly three years since Google and a slew of hardware and carrier partners officially announced the Android mobile operating system.

It was almost a year after that before the first major Android handset was released – the G1 on T-Mobile – and not until late 2009 that the Motorola Droid, complete with an aggressive ad campaign, catapulted the platform into the mainstream consciousness.

Today, a wide variety of manufacturers are producing Android phones, and they’re sold on all major carriers in the U.S. In fact, in aggregate they’re now outselling those running on Apple’s iOS, with recent numbers putting Google’s share of the mobile operating system market at nearly 20%.

With variants of the Android operating system now being extended to other platforms like tablets, Internet-connected televisions and even automobiles, we can only see it getting more pervasive in the years ahead.

Three years ago, Google CEO Eric Schmidt said, “Our vision is that the powerful platform we’re unveiling will power thousands of different phone models.” Three years later, it appears his company is very much on the way to doing so.