Cell wars have never been this interesting & exciting. The battle is brutal & even giants are being knocked off… like nine pins. Mantra is if you can’t keep up.. get off the track!
The rules of the game are different in different spaces, But this post pertains exclusively to the smart phone category.
It no longer is a game phone manufacturers brands. That’s history folks! It is a game of the operating systems, just like the Desktop/ Laptop category . It doesn’t matter whether you use a Lenovo / Acer / HCL/ HP or Compaq. you either use a Windows or the really cool Mac.. (sorry IOS.. or is it still the Mac.. have to check).
It’s down to 2
2 years ago and there were so many pretenders.. Symbian, Windows, Linux even & then the home grown Java based OS’s of lesser known players. Then Iphone came and changed the rules. Google made its appearance a year back & Microsoft made an ill fated entry too. Today… the battle of OS’s has come down to the 2 players who matter – Google & Apple. You choose this or that. The smart phone war has come down to IOS v/s Android. Nothing else matters. While Nokia’s Symbian is progressively finding lesser takers ( They now have tied up with Windows 7) but Windows has truly lost the battle here. Samsung has entered the fray with BADA, but it’s going to be a while before it starts to create a Wave.
I have been on the quest ( mission.. er.. doing research actually) of finding the perfect phone today. ( Does it even exist?) The best camera resolution, the best touch screen, the best screen resolution , the best browsing experience, longest battery, HDMI ports, the best price ( sorry I am an Indian, aint I) so many parameters… Convinced that none have it all. So how do you pick, and this is where the fun begins.
Who do you back?
So comes the ultimate question.. who do you back? The really cool but control freak Apple or the completely customizable Google? Eventually this is what matters. Let’s face it! This defines what you going to buy. 2,50,000 apps from the Apple store or 1,50,000( and growing) from the Google Marketplace. It’s your personality that’s going to make this decision and then the phone with all its merits & demerits is yours for keeps, coz there is really NO phone that has it all. Truly none.
If you choose the Iphone… your quest and dilemma ends there, if you do decide to go for the android… whoa… every mobile maker from a Samsung to HTC to Motorola and many more enter the ring with a plethora of models. And in case you are a geek like me no better pastime than to spend hours & hours researching over the one you wanna buy. And the more you wait the more the models to choose from.
Back from the Dead
What the race has done is also to bring back brands like Motorola back in the reckoning as a major player. It had fallen off the radar sometime back but the Milestone & Droid models have brought it back in the reckoning. ( By the way save the Experia & Sony seems to have stopped making news despite launching numerous models )
The Dream Situation
So what next… eventually I am waiting for the phone that lets me change the OS just by formatting whenever I want. That way one can flit between OS’s till the next Hardware revolution comes.
Till that happens … research, close your eyes & pick your phone.. sorry OS.
While my older post ended with the previous line some more info here: The jury is still out on who’s leading. Android has started to outsell the Ios. However, most reports suggest that Iphone is still the phone to beat and that more than 20% of Android & over 30% of Blackberry consumers ( yeah, it’s still there amongst the Business and BBM community) will shift to an iphone next. Having said that, ahem the growth of android last year is a staggering 886%! A wager either way is risky and Microsoft isn’t going to bow down. Infact, a windows resurgence may just get Nokia back into the fray, and on paper Microsoft + Nokia is marriage that looks great and should have happened a long time ago.
So, the good news is the competiton is heating up and technology is getting better. The bad news is there is no perfect phone. So 5 months after my previous post, my verdict still is close your eyes, cross your heart and pick your OS. You may change it on the next 18 months anyways. I know i did !
Stats courtesy: Computerworld & Logote
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