@Daniel B 06:21
Oh I agree that the mobile landscape can shift rapidly, but this is a problem for Android far more so than it is for iOS. And yes, an opportunity for Microsoft, though they will probably continue to do nothing with it.
There are some people who are locked in to iOS due to apps spending, but that is massively overrated as a reason for people to stick with Apple. Is even $50 in sunk costs in apps going to change your mind if you have a reason to switch platforms? Only a tiny fraction have spent more than that. The reason people have own iPhones purchase another isn't because they're "locked into the ecosystem" due to sunk costs for apps, but because they're just happy with their iPhone. The surveys that show high satisfaction rates among iPhone owners and high "would you buy another iPhone" rates prove it. Most won't see a need to switch to something other than Apple unless they decide they REALLY want a much larger screen or REALLY want to spend a lot less on their next phone. For the average consumer, those are the only things that differentiate phones beyond the name on the back. They don't care if a phone has NFC or a SD slot or a quad core CPU or has a sassy assistant named Siri.
Now the same is true for a lot of Samsung customers who have been happy with their Galaxy phones, they will buy another Samsung, not because it is Android, but because they were satisfied with their last Samsung purchase and see no compelling reason to switch. That fact is a potential disaster for Google because Samsung has no allegiance to Android and in fact appears that they are planning to go their own way with Tizen to better monetize their customers rather than allowing Google to make all the post-sale money from them. Samsung could switch from Android to Tizen and take half the Android with them! Only those who specifically chose Android when they bought Samsung might abandon them if they switch to Tizen, but that's a very small percentage of all of Samsung's customers.
The other problem Android faces is on the very low end, like emerging market China and India, where a lot of the new Chinese companies most of us have never heard of replacing feature phones with "smartphones". Android's Microsoft tax means that a cheaper competitor like the Firefox OS could quickly steal that low end where even $5 per phone makes a difference. This really doesn't matter except for market share perception, since these people are not providing any after-sale value, but if the people see Android's market share drop by 75% over a year or two, the market perception would be devastating.
Google is so busy worrying about Apple, which due to its focus on the high end could at best win only a little bit more market share, that it seems to be ignoring the very real potential it could lose a large majority of the Android market in just a couple years.
Google thinks they can be like Microsoft, and Android can be like Windows. But Windows had lock in, while Android has none. People didn't choose Windows any more than they choose Android, they chose Dell or HP. Microsoft had enough power thanks to Office to force out all the competition aside from Apple, but Google does not have any killer app they can leverage into a monopoly (no, search isn't, because there is Yahoo/Bing) Microsoft could not have built their desktop monopoly if the web had existed back then, because being Windows compatible wouldn't have mattered if you could run web apps like Google Office.