Posted by Dan Lyons on Sep 23, 2008 in Tech | 8 comments
That’s the headline on my Newsweek article about the G1 phone. Find it here.
Can Google really dominate the mobile-phone market?
Why such an extreme all-or-nothing approach of the market? I’m sure there is a “place” for G1, as there is a place for the iPhone, and for many others. I’m not sure anyone will ever “dominate” the phone market, at least for the devices. More competition, with different philosophies (ads for google, aestitic and simplicity for iPhone?), hardware, software, ideas, and features is good for us, especially if backed up by a company like google.
What will phone will succeed?
1.)An open architecture approach to mobile phones.
2.)A mobile OS with an interface users will find easy to use (open or proprietary). Intuitive, it just works.
3.)Inexpensive, across the board, competitive, high quality mobile services.
4.)Disruptive but Profitable.
What may happen next:
Microsoft will run up the white flag and do it’s own deal with Google. Microsoft concentrates on developing XBOX/Zune. XBOX with Zune becomes Media Center that captures public dollars and imagination that AppleTV doesn’t.
When Google’s dominance goes over the ninety percent threshold and maintains or betters in two or more quarters, lawsuits will be filed that Google has to open up and share it’s secret formulas, logarithms and other algebraic alchemy or be branded an anti-competitive monopolist and be subjugated to a wrist slapping and an atomic wedgie from the FTC and perhaps maybe pay a fine.
Due to further unforeseen glitches in MobileMe, ITMS, AT&T’s 3G network and upgrades to iPhone, and better service touted by competitor’s phones, interest in Apple’s line of devices actually wanes. An hysterical boardroom coup foments when Apple stock dips below $90, throwing Jobs out on his ass, again! Steve licks his wounds and assumes the reins at Disney.
Palm actually rebounds and maintains credible niche player status once enjoyed by Apple with its line of TreoPros and other products and services (ssshhhh!).
Disney and Universal/NBC raise ire when secret merger talks leak. Unsurprisingly after much ballyhoo in media, the government okays the merger, but Europe causes trouble for several years. The “red” and the “blue” network are under one roof for the first time since 1943. Disney/Universal withdraws all content from Apple’s ITMS, offering it’s own online store for downloadable content, able to use on any platform or device. Steve Jobs touted as “The Wizard of Ah-Ha!”
Credible IT managers pop up and emerge all over business landscape as glue holding everything together and finally earn a dubious if grudging respect as managers who report directly to CEOs and actually get things done.
Robert X Cringely, tired of making no money giving out free advice, captures the entire world’s imagination when he remotely lands a mini-robot-car device on Moon and brings it back for less than USA 2 000 000 (2008 value), earns money back and then some selling shares in effort, tee-shirts, lunar dust and documentary of said effort. No Oscar, no Emmy, no Palme d’Or. Euros, dollars and yen will do nicely, though.
Good article, Dan.
Google have realised that it’s all about the software, and so long as it’ll run on almost any hardware you throw at it, and allow as many manufacturers as possible to play your game, it would take a monumental cock-up to lose the game.
Consumers don’t care about hardware specs, they just want ease-of-use, compact physical design, and apps-a-plenty. An open platform such as Android is the best way to out-manouvre your competitors – providing it works.
I’ve been gifted an iPhone!
I’m not taking it! It can be and will be better. I don’t need to invite more frustration into my life. Next time, give me money or an array of 3-D solar cells.
they pointed out on c|net’s buzz out loud that they one-up’d apple in the “worst grammar in advertising dept.”. apple just released its “funnest ipod ever (gak!), but google/htc do them one better (and probably kill all sales quicker than a bill gates & jerry seinfeld comedy team), with: “smarterer,” “connecteder,” & “funnerer.”
errrrrr … no. just … no.
Good article Dan. I knew you still had it in you.
Fake Steve would have said that G1 will fail because the Google guys have all the design sense of a Soviet tractor manufacturer – and he would be right! Seriously, consumers don’t care about the guts – but they do care about functionality and ease of use. Apple gets it – opensource apologists don’t.
Laughing at the Newsweek commenters. “OMG, this is a BIASED article!!!!” Um, what about the title, “Call Me Skeptical” made you think this was an AP article about a bank fire?
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