Originally Posted by Roc Ingersol
What's the real threat from Google?
Apple has been wildly successful delivering premium products and Google's whole existence is predicated on free services that push search ads.
Who cares if Google has Android? It seems to be racing against itself to fall into the Windows Mobile trap - with dozens of slightly different OS versions and hardware configurations in the wild, snapping up niches to be sure, but not offering a compelling 'switch' case to Apple's core market.
That's not what it looks to me. They are all iPhone competitors. Whether they are as good, who knows, but they are all attempts at competing with iPhones. You don't mistake the failure of the product from the intention or even indirect intention of the product.
Before the iPhone was released, Google was turning Android into a Treo/Blackberry/PPC type platform. After the iPhone, basically every Android phone release has been an iPhone clone, down to app store strategies and various UI conventions. They have had a direct hand with exact and direct competition to Apple's iPhone: Nexus One, Droid, mytouch 3G, Hero, G1. Same type of price points, same type of high end profits kind of hardware. Same type of platform experience (Android market app store, user experience). Not as classy and well integrated as Apple's but they have been continuing to rev the platform and are getting closer to Apple every day.
Google's Android intentions appear to be creating the dominant mobile device platform spanning all devices from cell phones, PDAs, PMPs, and "smartbooks". Those are all direct shots at Apple's bottom line: sales of iPhones, iTunes economy, iPod touch (eventually someone will).
Everyone participating in the "Open Handset Alliance" intends to make as much money as possible, and part of that is knocking Apple off its rails. Google didn't have to do Android. They could have just made deals with all of the mobile platforms to provide search and cloud services. Instead, they want to own it all with Android.
Every Nexus One sale is potentially a loss in an iPhone sale. Every Droid sale is pontentially a loss in an iPhone sale. Every ChromeOS device is potentially a loss in an Apple "Tablet/Slate" device sale.
Those are all knives in the back, opening shots in a war to me. Apple better be taking Google seriously as an enemy as they are promoting a business that makes Apple irrelevant. So, I would welcome Bing sourced map data, Bing sourced "video sharing" application, Bing sourced searching, etc.