On Android outselling iPhone in the US


I definitely subscribe to OS News‘ notion that Apple sued HTC as a proxy for attacking Android. They are the soft target when compared to Google. If suing HTC would slow them/Android down (and let’s face it,they are the leaders in Android handsets due to their special relationship with Google) then I would do it. I also agree that it was partially done out of fear, fear that is justified by the recent US install base figures. Android phones are now at 28% of the US market, iPhone at 21%, and the gap is only going to widen.

I don’t know why Apple fans complain about the notion of Apple suing a competitor out of fear. It’s not a moral judgement, I’d certainly use anything in my armoury to take on a competitor. Of course they fear Android, they fear anything that can take market share from the iPhone. I’m sure Google’s Android team fear the iPhone, the difference is that iPhone is Apple’s bread and butter now, advertising is Google’s. Winning this is far more important to Apple, I’m not even sure Android even turns a direct profit for the chocolate factory. They just want people using the mobile web so that they sell more ads. Google in general, not the Android team, can’t lose this. Even if iPhone was pounding Android it doesn’t matter, iPhone has a fantastic mobile browser so Google benefit.

There is no way Apple can compete directly in sales against this number of Android manufacturers and there is no chance they will license out iPhone OS. I can see this going the way of Windows vs Mac. Apple can’t compete on install base against Android “clones”, a licensed OS is always going to beat them in numbers. Like the PC market they are going to have to go for premium products like the iPad and accept a 10% market share.

There is nothing wrong with this, they certainly did well in the desktop and laptop market, plus they have utter control over hardware, software and profits. It’s a system that’s worked seriously well for them. It also means their hardware and software integrate a whole lot better than most Android handsets.

Not that I think this is all rosey for Android, the Android base is spread over Android 1.5,1.6,2.0 and 2.1. Fragmentation wise it’s a mess that needs sorting (and allegedly will be with the Froyo release). I imagine the Motorola Droid accounts for a lot of the numbers here as it’s the phone that had the biggest marketing push from a major network. No doubt the HTC Incredible is going to do good numbers being on Verizon and a credible competitor to AT&T’s iPhone.

Even more interesting is that Blackberry is outselling both, probably due to enterprise buyers rather than consumer sales. They don’t need to compete with either Google or Apple directly, even I think they are better dedicated email machines. Blackberry OS 6 looks promising but there is not a cat in hells chance it will be as slick as iPhone OS 4.0 or Android with Sense UI.

I don’t care who “wins” as long as I get a better phone each year.


One Response to “On Android outselling iPhone in the US”

  1. They increase the fun quotient of the phone by quite a few notches the phone that had the biggest marketing push are better dedicated email machines.

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