But the combined sales of Android handsets give Google’s OS a commanding 44% share

Click to enlarge. Source: Canalys

There’s good news and bad news for Apple AAPL in Canalys’ final country-level report on what it describes as world’s largest smartphone market — still, for now, the United States.

The good news is that Apple took the lead from Research in Motion’s RIMM BlackBerry with shipments of 5.5 million iPhones in the U.S. for a 26.2% market share.

The bad news is that Google’s GOOG Android is winning the OS wars, shipping 9.1 million units to the U.S. market for a 43.6% share.

In the battle for global smartphone dominance, Nokia NOK still leads with a 33% share, although its margin is shrinking. Apple nosed ahead of RIM worldwide, gaining a 17% share to RIM’s 15%.

But the big winner globally, as in the U.S., was Google’s Open Handset Alliance. Sales of Android phones were up 1,309% year-over-year, according to Canalys, from 1.4 million in calendar Q3 2009 to more than 20.0 million units in Q3 2010, giving the OS a 25% worldwide market share.

Below: Canalys’ spreadsheet.

NPD’s numbers, also out Monday, are slightly different: Android 44%, Apple 23%, RIM 22%. See here.

[Follow Philip Elmer-DeWitt on Twitter @philiped]