Frenemies with Apple

Throughout the years of innovation in the mobile space, Apple has acquired some frenemies (friends and enemies), but the question to ask is, who made that turning point and revolutionized the tech game? The year was 2007 when we were first  introduced to the iPhone (I heard about it days later I will have to admit) the then Apple C.E.O, the late Steve Jobs (R.I.P) took the stage at the Macworld to introduce to the world what Apple had long hid in the vault with utmost secrecy with a moniker “project Purple” that finally culminated into the iPhone. Back then, Google’s CEO now chairman Eric Schmidt was still friends close friends and also on the board of Apple, of course this was before Android. Before apple was flying high with the iPod line and it was the coolest thing to happen to music in the early 2000s. The iPod was a game changer and so the iPhone would follow its footsteps and it actually did attain so much success up to today.

Apple sells them in millions, the iPhone contributes a large chunk of Apple’s revenue, its one of the reasons why Apple makes it to the Fortune 500, and its competition  Microsoft, Samsung, Amazon and Google trail behind it in these rankings. Have you ever asked yourself what if Apple didn’t exist? It’s no doubt that the company has been at the center stage of innovation in the mobile space though some may urge that it can’t dethrone the now acquired Motorola mobility at some instance. Apple is prized for its innovations starting with the early Apple computer and the much successful follow-up, the Apple II, the Mac, ipod, iphone, ipad,  and rumor has it that an  iWatch is along the way.

BLACKBERRY SHRINKS

blackberry 9720Symbian was powering  most smartphones, Blackberry’s phones were the smartphones to hold, Microsoft tried out its efforts with windows mobile seeing Palms success with its line of PDA’s. Samsung wasn’t such a big contender not until the birth of the Galaxy line of smartphones with the advent of Google’s Android mobile OS . All these had their days to shine but not until Apple joined the race, everything changed. Here is a quick recap

Apple computer had to change names to Apple Inc with its burgeoning empire now being stalled by the likes of Samsung. The competition to this empire responded by changing strategy and a lot of dollars started flowing towards R&D. Microsoft completely overhauled its windows mobile OS and came up with windows Phone 7 which was also revamped and gave birth to windows Phone 8. Nokia had to drop its own Symbian OS, it tried out its luck with MeeGo which it eventually abandoned and finally settled with Microsoft’s Windows Phone and now Google’s Android. This comes after very many attempts to dethrone Apple and Google in the smart world of phones. Then came Samsung, a not so familiar player rose taking up Google’s Android to conquer the world by storm.As all these folded. Blackberry saw its market share shrink to almost nothing compared to the competition, the once preferred smartphone of choice seeing no light today in consumers hands.

SAMSUNG GROWS STRONG

Now Google is flying high with its Android OS and a growing list of OEMs, it is alleged that Google’s Android didn’t support touch not until the iPhone debuted with touch functionality.  The smartphone game proved lucrative for Apple attracting other foes to join the game aggressively.

Samsung's jk shin shows off the first Galaxy Phone at CTIA 2010
Samsung’s jk shin shows off the first Galaxy Phone at CTIA 2010

Samsung specifically couldn’t be left out and they came up with the Galaxy line of smartphones in 2010, tablets and now wearable devices have followed, that have seen it rank high as the most smartphone maker the world over. Samsung has built a reputation for its self as it cuts every price point with its Galaxy devices. From the top-end to the low-end, they are found. Every where.

ENDLESS PATENT WARS

 The emergence of these two led to shedding  market by some players take Blackberry for instance and its C.E.O John Chen revealed he would pull out Blackberry from Smartphones if it didn’t make a profit. Not forgetting emergence of others. As HTC shed off the market to Samsung and dropping the title as Androids top OEM, Titans from Asia, Sony, LG, Huawei, ZTE, Lenovo and recently Xiaomi and the rest that have cropped up. So their endless patent wars in the courts of law have given us the best at the receiving side as every manufacturer has to give us his best to conquer our souls towards their gadgets.  It’s all about brand loyalty, that’s why Apples sees a profit every quarter though its growth is now facing fierce competition than before. Its recognized as the best Premium handset maker according to critics. Not even their efforts with the iPhone 5C, the anticipated low-cost iPhone brought that reputation down. It Sold at a premium except in the US. Samsung on the other side has had its slice of the premium handset market with the Galaxy S smartphones. Others have come up with their premium offerings to offer competition and tap into this profitable market.

These two frenemies, Apple & Samsung have changed the way we interact with our gadgets and have attracted so much innovation along the way. They are the reason the PC market is shrinking at a faster rate and so the term ” Post-PC era”. What’s your say?

Roger Bambino Contributed to this Post
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