Originally Posted by Stoobs
Hmm, LG look distinctly vulnerable..
3rd spot up for grabs some time in 2011?
LG hasn't had a successful "super phone" of the likes that have boosted the fortunes of Motorola and Samsung; I believe they have a few models in the works. It remains to be seen if they can catch any market share with a highly specced, large screened handset of the Galaxy S type.
OTOH, the whole "OMG the latest Android phone that goes to 11" phenomena may have limited shelf life-- there actually isn't all that much the manufacturers can do beyond bigger screens and faster CPUs, and at some point screen size is limited by the form factor. I don't think there's much of a market for 6" phones.
Once you've achieved a certain level of saturation with must have geek phones, what little money to be made in the Android handset market may further contract, as the market as a whole shifts to cheap or free. That's already happened, to a certain extent, with not all that much differentiation between countless free or cheap on contract Android phones sharing shelf space with $200, heavily advertised hero phones (not to say Hero phones).
Android, despite it's dawn-of-the-smart-phone early mover advantage (first credible competitor to the iPhone) is a commodity OS destined for commodity hardware. The glamour of the Droid X's and Galaxies and Heros is just an artifact of a new kind of device most people aren't familiar with and will fade; I expect Android to become the de facto "don't care it's just a phone" OS along the lines of the feature phone OSes that came before it.
As such, it will command a lot of market share and make no to little money for anyone but Google, and Android handset manufacturers will compete with bling and dubious "features." Apple, OTOH, will be continuing to build a computing platform with ties across multiple devices and the desktop.