Windows Mobile, Symbian, Blackberry OS, QNX, Maemo, Meego, and now webOS are joining the mobile OS graveyard. iPhone got the fight started, but Android was ultimately the mobile OS to bring all the other OS to their knees. But how did Android actually do it? Let's take them all one by one and see.
Windows Mobile was mostly popular in USA, but it had a pretty good share of the market in other parts of the world as well. Windows Mobile was Microsoft's Android. They built it, thinking that just like its PC counter-part, it will end up dominating the mobile world. That didn't happen because Windows Mobile has always been clunky and in need of high processing resources that only expensive PDA's and high-end smartphones had. Therefore, in most of the world, it was Symbian that was on the majority of smartphones.
But Microsoft didn't get to worry about Symbian for too long, because the iPhone arrived, and soon after that Android appeared, which threatened its business model of being the OS other manufacturers would use. Unlike Windows Mobile which looked ancient and offered little competition to iPhone, Android was much more compelling to manufacturers, especially since it was free and open source, and they could do pretty much whatever they wanted with it. It was the manufacturer's dream come true, and it promised to help them fight off the iPhone invasion, which it did. By the time Microsoft came up with a more competitive alternative (WP7), Android was already all over the place and all phone manufacturers were heavily invested in Android.
Just a few short years ago, Symbian had close to 70% market share in smartphones, globally. It's hard to believe that now when they have only 16% left, and it's dropping very fast from month to month. It's already threatening Nokia to lose not only its smartphone king position, but it's phone king position as well. They've actually already lost the smartphone crown to Apple this quarter, but I believe Samsung will quickly become the king in both smartphones and overall phone sales very soon. As Android goes into cheaper models, the volume of Android phones will rise even faster, and Samsung is in a very good position to take advantage of that, and dominate Nokia's developing nations with its inexpensive Android phones.
How did Symbian get in this position so quickly? Like Windows Mobile, Symbian is from a different world, a world where "smartphones" weren't half as useful as today's Android smartphones. These smartphones were still mostly used as phones, not as Internet devices. The browsing experience was much worse, and processing power was lacking, which made productivity tools too slow and not worth using most of the time.
The OS itself didn't look modern enough, and by the time they decided to make it more polished, it was too late. The momentum was already going to both Android and iPhone ecosystems. Even after they tried making it look more modern, it was still the same old OS underneath, an OS that wasn't made to be used in today's world of touchscreen smartphones. Therefore, all the other manufacturers except Nokia started dropping Symbian in favor of Android, and within 2 years Android was already outselling all new Symbian devices, something that wasn't even predicted to happen until 2014. By the time Nokia took Android seriously, it was already too late for Symbian.
In the next part, I'm going to talk about how Android is also putting an end to the domination of the former smartphone king in USA: the Blackberry OS.Click Here to View the Post.