Author confuses Monopoly with Standards. Standards=Good, Monopolies=Bad
Yes a common platform is good. You make some spurious arguments here that it is monopolies supplying this benefit, yet I fail to see how this benefit is any different from or better than standards and open interfaces that allow for common development as well, without one king holding the reigns and gaining all the benefits.
I would argue that there is good evidence to show that Open standards such as BSD (which by the way Apple OS runs on) and the IETF (remember those guys who actually made it so everyone COULD use the internet?!?!?.) work much better, and have show far more REAL development than Apple Google and MS combined.
I think the only benefit you state could have been gained if governments and people had been more informed, without the evil of creating entrenched empires that we are all beholden to.
Yes a common platform allows for more developer growth, yet I think Apple store, and MS dominance on the desktop have show exactly how these monopolies only purport to offer this, when in reality they are building a monopoly with which to keep and gain more power. Once they can do it themselves they have no need for the guys who used to write apps for them.
Software developers should take to note the new provision (in the ever changeable rules from Apple) that clearly states they will deny apps that there is already an similar app available. In other words "APPLE WILL NOT ALLOW YOU TO COMPETE FAIRLY IF YOU ARE COMPETING WITH OUR APPS". Why any company would spend the time to build an empire for another with no guarantee of results is beyond me.
We would not have the number of websites available by ANY stretch of the imagination if instead of Apache (that 70-90% of the web servers run) we had to purchase IIS and MS Server 200x for every site. Imagine if instead of the IETF's FTP, HTTP, DNS, DHCP etc, we had to pay a license fee for every product that used it.
I've said it a million times already:
THE US NEEDS TO ENFORCE FTC AND SEC RULES AND STOP LETTING COMPANIES BUY THEIR COMPETITORS, WHEN IT DOES NOT SHOW AN OVERWHELMING BENEFIT TO BOTH THE CONSUMER AND COMPETITION. They have been rubber stamping these purchases for years and years and if they reviewed this stipulation that is supposed to be enforced, we would not have this problem.
Google should not have been allowed to but DoubleClick, Inktomi and the other major information collection competitors.
MS should not have been able to buy 3 of the top 5 game developers to force X-box content only on their device. Buying a company that produces a product for multiple platforms and then forcing it on only one, is in itself an ANTI-COMPETITIVE action that should have been met with severe penalties, instead Halo becomes an XBox only game, and MS gets to build on their monopoly.
Intel, Apple, Cisco, etc all the companies that continually look like monopolies are usually also the most active at buying up their competition, and buying companies in whole in order to enter new markets and expand their monopoly offerings.