There is an interesting article over at ZDNet with five reasons why Android will beat out the iPhone, WinMo and Blackberry as well as WebOS. It’s a good read and basically the five reasons are as follows:
- Android is powered by Google
- Android is improving quickly
- Android is open
- Android will run on different phones from different manufacturers
- Android has the best of each of the other three, iPhone’s App and screen likeness, WinMo’s icons and Pre’s multitaksing.
I agree with many of the reasons, but not all. Some of those reason listed also makes it easier to fall short of those lofty goals. The first, Android being powered by Google, means it’s got alot of financial backing and political backing as well as great programmers and interface designers. Keep in mind the recent controversy over custom ROMs though. Google is interested in Android to make money. Sure they maintain the core OS, but think of what the phone manufacturers are already doing, custom interfaces, ala Sense UI, TouchWiz and MOTOBLUR. Google doesn’t seem interested in the OS for any other reason than a platform to get their products onto cell phones…Adsense in mobile searches anyone? While I would love to believe that Google will continue to back it’s baby, I have a feeling we might see the work transferring more and more to the phone manufacturers.
Android is improving quickly, but that is more of a necessity than a luxury. It’s still a young OS compared to the iPhone’s OS and the releases are adding “catch up” features instead of “lead the industry” features. I have used both extensively, and the iPhone is still more refined, robust and slick than any Android build (including custom ROMs) I’ve used. that said, I would count the fast improvements as a reason…yet. If this continues and Android becomes more refined, it could surpass the others quickly on it’s way up. Only time will tell. Being open doesn’t necessarily make something better. Open standards sometimes take years to come to fruition (802.11n), whereas closer course and tightly held products can be more controlled and go quickly from idea to reality. However, it does make for a warm cozy feeling, and if done correctly, is a great advantage. So far, it’s going well. The other two points, I agree to completely. Having multiple manufacturers and phones that run the same core OS, with access to the same Apps and essentially the same features is a great way to promote and expand your user base. Android should be on lower end phones, middle ground phones, phones with physical keyboards, phones without keyboards, PMPs, netbooks?, etc. This should also appeal to developers making those apps. I’ve read that so far, sales to those developers pale in comparison to iPhone app sales, but I think it’s a pure numbers thing. Get more devices out there, and you’ll see the numbers rise. Also, advertise the apps! Apple does a great job of advertising the app portion of there cell phone. Google/T-Mobile/Sprint/Verizon should get on board. T-Mobile advertises customization of the myTouch 3G, but they need to show it’s also got apps, like the iPhone, and many are very similar, if not the same.
That brings us to the last point, the best of all the other phones. Android is laid out with icons in a grid much like the iPhone, only in a drawer/try or across the 3 (standard) screens. But, it allows custom backgrounds as well as custom interfaces and home screens among other things, all without having to root the phone or break any agreements or void any warranties.
All that being said, I love the Android OS. I love the interface, the customization, the rooting, custom ROMs, and all the little features you can play with. It works well for me and is definitely my kind of product. Hence the website. I am looking forward to more great things. Keep up the good work Google and company!
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