Linked by Yoni on Fri 18th Jan 2013 21:56 UTC
Apple "Never mind the fact that the iPod turned the entire music industry on its head. Never mind the fact that most successful notebooks today resemble designs first popularized by Apple. Never mind the fact that the blueprint of the modern day smartphone remains the original iPhone. Never mind the fact that competitors are scrambling wildly to copy the success and design of the iPad. Forget all of these things, because when it comes to Apple, the 'what have you done for me lately?' mentality reigns supreme."
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RE[2]: Reponse
by Tony Swash on Sun 20th Jan 2013 13:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Reponse"
Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

Even that though ignores what we are seeing in the mobile market which is an exact (on fast forward) repeat of what we saw in X86


I think that is a common but completely wrong interpretation of what is happening in the mobile device markets. What is interesting is how different the mobile device markets are and how differently the dynamics of platform performance in the mobile device markets are compared to the PC markets.

In the PC era a Mac was pretty much an equivalent of a Wintel PC when it came to platform utilisation. On both Macs and Wintel PCs people did pretty much the same things, they all ran programs to do similar things and with similar patterns of usage. It was probably true that there was a slightly higher amount of graphic design being done on Macs compared to Wintel PCs but that difference wasn't hugely significant and the difference faded over time. People generally used their Macs as much as people used their Wintel PCs and people generally pretty much did the same sort of stuff on both platforms.

This was very important.

Because is meant that one Mac and one Wintel PC had an equivalent impact and value when it came to platform utilisation. Broadly speaking if twice as many Wintel PCs were sold as Macs then there would be twice as many people buying Wintel PC software, twice as many Wintel PC compatible documents would be produced, twice as many web pages would be surfed using Wintel PC browsers, etc etc. Broadly a Mac was only as valuable as a Wintel PC in the larger PC ecosystem and value chain.

And this this meant that if the ratio of Wintel PCs sold to Macs was ten to one then Wintel PCs would utterly dominate the PC ecosystem and value chain. Macs were marginalised because the money followed the consumers and the Mac ecosystem became less attractive and this in turn drove even more marginalistion.

This is what people think is happening with iOS versus Android. But it isn't.

Mobile device platform utilisation can be measured by these sort of common sense metrics (I have probably missed some)

Web browsing
Web commerce
Developer revenues
Peripheral makers revenues
Hardware makers profits
Advertising income and spend
Availability of digital content

The most striking thing when one looks at the statistics for these sorts of platform utilisation metrics is how consistently they show iOS significantly out performing Android. It seems that in terms of platform utilisation, and therefore in terms of added value in the ecosystem, one average iOS user is worth several times one average Android user.

This is has very big implications. It means that in order for the Android ecosystem to just reach parity with the iOS ecosystem there needs to be something between four and ten times as many Android devices as iOS devices in the installed base. In order for Android to have a richer and healthier ecosystem than iOS might require Android to achieve an installed base twenty or more times that of iOS.

The mobile device market is not the PC market. The dynamic is completely different and trying to analyse it using concepts and patterns from the PC era will lead to a misunderstanding of what is happening.

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