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Android's Difficult 2011

by: Mark Reschke | Dec 30, 2010
Categories: Predictions, Products

Many analysts and inside-the-beltway tech journalists believe Android is going to be the new Windows that dominates and controls the world as we know it - Don't count on it.

Android is exploding on eBook readers, tablets, phones, HDTV's and probably quite soon, refrigerators and hairdryers. So long as the buzz word "Android" is on a device, that's all that'll matters and Google seems more than fine with that approach. But will that make Android a winner? And what is a so-called "activation" anyway?...

Google's Andy Rubin considers this Android expansion as choice, and indeed Andy is right. Google is deploying choice between poor to outright lousy products. This isn't what consumers are going to flock to in light of what's coming in a few short months. Android's going to run into a hefty set of roadblocks in 2011, and many will derail Android's assumed King status.

Android’s 2011 Issues

  • Apple: Dozens of Android tablets will hit the streets in 2011, but iPad 2 is going to level them all (see iPad 2 Launching January).
  • RIM: Playbook will defend RIM's own turf, as well as new BlackBerry devices with the QNX OS.
  • HP: The Palm group will deliver a webOS tablet and other mobile devices during the year. With HP's ownership of the channel, WebOS is going to gain a foothold.
  • Microsoft will sell Windows-On-A-Diet 7 tablets. Dumb? Of course. But never underestimate their aging, but still massive following.

Excluding Apple (of course), these companies will be fighting for iOS table scraps. The noise created from their marketing assault, along with Androids lack of polish, is going to drag Android solutions straight into their crossfire.

Consumers that seriously consider Android devices are going to have three alternate choices to consider. For the geeks, Windows tablet or HP's webOS solutions will be compelling. RIM has the corporate world to sell and lean on, and as we know, Apple's iPad 2 and iPhone 5 will continue to plow over these 1.0-like products for some time to come. 

Android's relatively free ride against iOS (largely via carrier exclusivity) is over. Throw in a host of other heavyweights wanting in on the action and Google's Android won't be the darling of 2011, rather, it'll be just another player in the lower-level mix.

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