80s Redux? Control Freak Failure .. Again?
The real news here is Android overtaking the iPhone and the real questions: whether Steve Jobs is about to repeat the single biggest mistake in computing history (not licensing his O/S and thus handing a 25 year near monopoly to Bill Gates) and gift the phone market to Google?
Jobs wants to dominate the phone market the way he dominates the iPod/Music market. He's a control freak and having tasted that degree of dominance - along with the excitement that's beyond any woman's (or Filipino pool boy's - I never really worked out his sexuality) gift - he wants more.
His strategy is promote the iPhone via cool, 3rd party apps which he then locks into appearing on his platform alone by making it as expensive and inconvenient as possible to port them to other platforms.
Then, even when non-fanbois come to replace their iPhones, they buy another one because it's the only thing that runs their favourite fart app.
It's not a bad strategy - I had Nokias for years because I'd paid for a copy of Route 66 that only ran on Nokias - but it only really works while the iPhone platform offers the greatest number of potential customers for the developers of the most interesting apps.
Once the iPhone no longer offers the most potential punters - and it looks like it won't in the next 12 to 18 months - it obviously makes more sense to develop for the platforms that do. That they happen to be more open and easier to port code between just helps make that transition all the easier.
Result, everybody starts developing for Android/RIM and eventually the iPhone goes the way of the Mac: a pretty irrelevance worshipped by media types who's computing needs really only run to a word processor and a printer.
And that Fart app, of course.
You'd think Stevie boy would maybe have learned his lesson after a quarter century of eating Gate's dust, but maybe control freakery always trumps common sense ..