Opinion: Android-iPhone war leaves the door open for Mango

windows-phone-7-5-mango

On paper, the Droid Razr is the first phone that has come out, that I can recall, on top of an iPhone launch that is more advanced in nearly every way. It is thinner, it is lighter, faster, has longer battery life, and it is a 4G rather than a 3G phone. Based on specs alone, the Droid Razr obliterates the iPhone 4S, but I doubt many Apple folks will switch.

Interestingly, I’m at an EMC event today and one of the questions to the business audience was on smartphone platforms: The only one they would block? Android.

I think this highlights the long-term competitive problem for Google, and perhaps a possible opportunity for the Windows Phone platform on Nokia.

It isn’t just about the hardware

As this mostly CIO audience pointed out, the iPhone stands out because it’s the best overall solution on the planet. The app store is both the largest and the most aggressively vetted, the breadth of services the most complete, the accessories the most prevalent, and the integration with other things (like cars) the most common.

In addition, it has the most loyal audience, and Apple traditionally has both the highest customer satisfaction and the highest customer advocacy scores (people who will actively promote Apple products). Representatives from company after company said they recently enabled Mac and iPad use in their firms, and were immediately overwhelmed by demand they didn’t have any idea existed. Clearly a cautionary tale for Microsoft and Windows.

Apple seems to spend more time thinking through the complete solution, and in caring for its users, which gives it a sustaining advantage.

Moldy Apples

Apple’s many benefits aside, it is hard to ignore the fact that the Razr is more advanced than the iPhone 4S in almost every way in terms of hardware. This suggests that Apple’s vertical integration is starting to work against it, particularly on the chip that powers the iPhone 4S, which is clearly a generation behind the Razr’s. Apple does buy its cellular radios from third parties, but it is clearly using an older generation here as well, on the argument that 4G was just too power-intensive to use. However, the fact that the Razr has this technology, and is both lighter and has longer battery life, just makes it look like Apple is trying to cover up that it can no longer compete on hardware.

Part of the reason folks buy iPhones is because they believe them to be technologically superior. This round, they aren’t.

motorola-droid-razr

Perplexing Androids

Even with superior hardware, Android has a sustaining problem as well. It has gained the perception of being relatively hard to use, and much more prone to security problems than any other major platform. This is what delayed Netflix on the phone, and why the business folks I’m sharing the room with are blocking it. The most recent smartphone attack was a hacked Netflix app that functioned as a Trojan. It contained a key logger, and it scared the hell out of business buyers.

It doesn’t matter how good the hardware is if folks become scared of the software.

Enter Mango

Both Apple and Google, who currently dominate the smartphone space, have major exposures. Apple is overmatched by its reliance on its own hardware, and Google is overmatched by its open and kit-like approach to products, which results in a less desirable solution. This suggests that Microsoft, which has a hardware solution like Google’s and has packaged it more closely to Apple’s, should have a massive opportunity here.

It should be no surprise that when the IT folks who were blocking Android were asked if they would allow Mango, they said yes. It was sad to note that when they were asked if anyone wanted a Mango phone, they said no. Microsoft is massively underfunding demand generation for Mango devices, and several attendees commented that they couldn’t believe that Microsoft’s market share actually dropped when Windows Phone 7 shipped. This leaves the door open for Nokia, which hasn’t yet entered a Windows Phone product to pull an Apple. We’ll shortly see if Nokia will step up.

Guest contributor Rob Enderle is the founder and principal analyst for the Enderle Group, and one of the most frequently quoted tech pundits in the world. Opinion pieces denote the opinions of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views of Digital Trends.

Mobile

Fitbit’s new health care platform sets out to improve wellness in the workplace

Fitbit's new platform, Fitbit Care, aims to help improve wellness in the workplace. Using wearables, digital health coaching, and a more personalized health care experience, employees can have an easier time staying on top of their health.
Mobile

Apple iPhone XS Max vs. Huawei P20 Pro: Clash of the titans

Anyone seeking a great new smartphone with plenty of money to spend has two amazing options, but which is better for you? We pit the Apple iPhone XS Max vs. Huawei P20 Pro in various categories to help you choose.
Mobile

Android 9.0 Pie is finally rolling out to the OnePlus 6

Android 9.0 Pie has been released. But is your phone getting Android 9.0 Pie, and if so, when? We've done the hard work and asked every device manufacturer to see when their devices would be getting the update.
Mobile

Apple iPhone XS vs. Samsung Galaxy S9: 2018's biggest flagships clash

The iPhone XS has been revealed, and it's one of the best phones of the year. But even though it's Apple's latest and greatest, it's up against a lot of competition. Is the iPhone XS better than the Samsung Galaxy S9?
Deals

Save up to $1,000 with the best smartphone deals for September 2018

Need a better phone but don't want to spend a fortune? It's never a bad time to score a new smartphone and save some cash. We rounded up the best smartphone deals available that can save you as much as $1,000.
Deals

Cyber Monday 2018: When it takes place and where to find the best deals

Cyber Monday is still a ways off, but it's never too early to start planning ahead. With so many different deals to choose from during one of the biggest shopping holidays of the year, going in with a little know-how makes all the…
Mobile

Samsung looks to Huawei for inspiration, and the new Galaxy A7 is born

Samsung has launched the Galaxy A7 smartphone, its first with a triple-lens rear camera, which, although sounds similar to the one fitted to the Huawei P20 Pro, works in a different way.
Mobile

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro's body may wirelessly charge new Bluetooth headphones

Huawei is no stranger when it comes to big phones. And this year it plans to go even bigger with the Huawei Mate 20 and Mate 20 Pro. Here's what we think we know about the new range.
Mobile

Here's the Samsung Galaxy S9's new Android 9.0 Pie interface

The Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus are here. The flagship devices boast some awesome new features and a powerful new processor. Here's everything you need to know about these Samsung phones.
Mobile

Our favorite tips and tricks to help you master your Samsung Galaxy Tab S4

Apple's not the only game in town when it comes to productivity tablets. Samsung's Galaxy Tab S4 has all the features you'll need to get work done. Here are a few of our favorite tips and tricks for the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4.
Mobile

Huawei is not-so-subtly trolling Friday’s iPhone launch

Apple launches the iPhone XS range to the public on Friday, but Huawei is out in force to remind the public what they could be missing out on (Hint: It's the Mate 20 Pro) by choosing Apple's latest smartphone.
Mobile

Audio company Bragi is suing OnePlus over the word 'dash'

Despite taking steps to change to "Warp Charge," OnePlus is being sued by audio company Bragi over the phone manufacturer's continued use of the word "dash" in the Dash Charging used in OnePlus phones.
Mobile

The best weather apps for Android will keep you dry no matter where you go

You may not be able to change the weather, but you can at least be prepared for it. Check out our guide to the best weather apps for Android, so you'll always know what to expect when you step out the front door.
Mobile

Hateful software kills our enthusiasm for newcomer Realme’s $155 Android phone

Realme is a new smartphone brand with an interesting start to life, as it closely mirrors that of OnePlus, a brand we admire. The Realme 2 is its second phone, and we've given it a try to see if it's a winner.