Originally Posted by addabox
Outside of random internet fans, or people casting about for an expedient "why Apple must fail" argument, I don't really hear anything good about Android.
It certainly hasn't gotten any particular buzz. As the article you linked to mentions, 6 months on and there are a grand total of two phones. A few rumors of netbooks. A little upbeat talk about "cupcake", which adds some features without appearing to do anything terribly persuasive.
Part of the problem seems to be that Google isn't really pushing it very hard, but I think part of the problem goes to why Apple's vertically integrated model works-- "customizable" and "open source" sound good on paper, but when you release it into the wild, nobody's driving the train.
Without a great deal of intense focus on hardware/software integration, ongoing development, a long term plan beyond "if we build it, they will come" and a narrative that's clear to both consumers and developers, it's really hard to create a product that breaks through the crowd to distinguish itself as more than another "me too" touch phone.
The only ads I've seen seem to be saying that, since an Android handset has a browser, you can Google stuff and find out shit-- as if that were a still a selling point.
I agree with the conclusion of the article-- unless Google shrugs off the sense of drift that has set in and does something fairly splashy by the fall, Android will very much be the desktop Linux of handsets-- doomed to haunt the margins while being championed by that last people in the world you want acting as spokespeople for your products.
There's been a lot of buzz in the press. But, I keep hearing about new handsets and they don't arrive. This netbook thing is doomed to fail unless they can get some software for it, and fast. It's why Linux netbooks have been failing. No one who wants a netbook is going to want Linux on it other than Linux Loonies (I should copyright that, but I never get around to it!).
The thing about Apple's prducts is that they keep on ticking. After someone buys a newer one, they sell the old one. Most of the iPhones that have ever been sold are still working somewhere. What other phones can we say that about?
That's something that people have to keep in mind, because it serves the software and accessory markets well. At least 37 million (as of the end of March, over two weeks ago, likely 38 million by now) iPhone/iTouches have been sold, and likely, most of them are still in service.
Think of that market compared to any other companies market. And with each of those devices able to run almost every program and accessory offered today, how can any other company hope to catch up?
The problem with Rim's store for example, is that only later model phones can use it. That makes it a much smaller population.
WinMobile has a big population, but its not likely that most of the Win Mobile phones are still being used, and even if many are, they can't use much of the latest software, and few accessories are available.
Palm is dying quickly, and if the Pre doesn't make it, I've seen estimates that say that Palm won't last the year.
Android, as we see isn't doing well yet with only T-Mobile in the game. So far, not many programs, no real accessories either.
Nokia is in a state of disarray right now. They have no real direction. Like RIM's new models, Nokia is scattershooting all over the place, with no plan in mind. Just come out with very different models and see what sells.
The problem with all these other companies is that without a plan going forwards, they can't build up a platform. Apple is showing everyone that a platform is what's needed.
By keeping the phones and iTouch on a single body plan, they've simplified everything for the accessory and software makers. This gives those companies a much bigger market to target.
With RIM, the Storm and Bold are so different that they are two separate markets. Same thing for Nokia with the 5800 and the N97.
Without a coherent vision, they may sell a lot of phones, but they will fall far behind in usability as Apple keeps adding features and performance while keeping the OS upgrades compatible.
OS 3.0 will add major new features on the software and hardware end that no one can match in overall depth of usefulness.