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1.13.2010

Will History Repeat Itself?



I've been thinking a lot lately about the battle for mobile device supremacy. It's no secret that the iPhone is the ruling platform these days. With a game changing interface, innovative apps storefront, and widespread global adoption the iPhone is still the mobile standard bearer. However, the iPhone is receiving stiff competition from several directions, most notably the many flavors of devices that run Google's Android OS. Seeing this storm brewing takes me back to the days of IBM 286 and the Mac Classic. It was a philosophical difference really. Steve jobs was committed to the idea of marrying the OS with hardware because in his view it ultimately makes for a better user experience. Over in Redmond they built an OS that would run on any hardware that met a certain set of requirements. While Jobs' philosophy made for a better user experience, Gates' philosophy made for an experience that could be widely replicated across just about any hardware. This of course led to Windows dominating the desktop computing space to the current day. It was also nearly the death of the beloved Mac. Fast forward 25 years and we are seeing the same thing happening with mobile handsets. Will the iPhone be relegated to the technically elite? Will Android dominate? Only time will tell.


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