Many people were taken aback by Google’s announcement that they would be competing directly with Apple’s operating system with their own new Android OS for mobile devices. Since then it’s become a race for OS domination. Apple had the advantage initially of being technologically ahead of Google with their system, as Google were starting from scratch, but that difference has been made up surprisingly quickly.
With this in mind, it seems that marketing will be the deciding factor in whole wins this competition. The hearts and mind of consumers have been taken again and again by Apple’s simple, clear marketing, as well as a generally ‘friendly’ image that puts them up on a pedestal. But Google is another of the ‘friendly’ companies, with dominance over the search engine market, and a massive base of trusting users.
Last year showed that, in the US at least, Android’s OS crept ahead of Apple’s iOS in terms of customer use. This is a pretty steep growth, and one that shows a lag in Apple’s activity over the last six months of the year. Without any developments on Apple’s part, Android has worked frantically to improve itself, and the figures show the fruits of these labours.
This remains to be seen though, and the next year will be an interesting one for the industry around smartphones, and of course Apple and Google. The competition between them has seen personal jibes as well as indirect brinkmanship, and it’s this level of drive in both departments that will mean developments for the consumer. So in the end it will be better for the customer, and better for the smartphone industry as a whole, whatever happens.
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