Android, the iPhone, and the law of asymmetrical competition

Umair Haque:

Light beats heavy. Open beats closed. Free beats paid. Good beats evil.

Glyn Moody (in ComputerWorld) applies the law of asymmetrical competition, i.e. that open beats closed, to the struggle between iPhone and Android, predicting that in the field of software (not hardware!), the openness of Android will mean that the iPhone capabilities will be eventually surpassed.

Read the whole article for the detailed examples that he gives, but here’s the gist of the argument:

Glyn Moody:

“The openness of the Android platform means that developers will have a freedom those working with the iPhone can only dream of. In terms of hacking the G1, that may be of limited appeal, but elsewhere it is crucially important, notably for handset manufacturers and mobile companies. The former will be able to port Android to more or less any model, and to add such bells and whistles as they wish. And yet even this is not the most important aspect of such portability.

Where I believe that the Android platform will really score is outside the mobile domain. For not only can the code be ported to other mobiles, it can be used for – well, anything. The obvious application is for the rather nebulous Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs), but here’s an even more interesting possibility: netbooks.”

This video explains Android’s: Applications Without Borders:

1 Comment Android, the iPhone, and the law of asymmetrical competition

  1. Avatardean collins

    Posted at:

    I was at a Mobile Barcamp last weekend one of the most interesting quotes I heard all day was from an Android developer

    “My application does 4 things….all of which are not possible on the iphone”

    Basically his entire application couldn’t be built for or even run on the iPhone and that’s even assuming that Apple would actually approve and pass his application.

    I think the winds of change are coming, it might take a while because of distributed application stores and multiple handset manufacturers but all the really cool apps you are going to see will be built on the Android platform and the uncool kids will be left using iPhones.


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