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Android is in 60 devices, in 49 countries, 59 operators and 21 OEMs

@tim Google often finds out about new Android phones the same day the rest of the world does. The joys of an open platform!

via (1) Twitter / Home.

Clears up why they rely on “activations” to find out what’s going on in the market.

  • http://, Iphoned

    It seems with Android, Google launched an autonomous unguided missle. The missle targeting mechanism is not able to tell friend from foe. So Google can be on the receiving end just as much as the originally-intended target.

    • famousringo

      This is the most amusing analogy I will read this week.

    • Adam

      "The missle targeting mechanism is not able to tell friend from foe."

      It gives that impression because it's “open”. Meaning that telecom companies can rewrite it on the fly.

    • Yuvamani

      +1

  • poru

    Gee, sounds like a really stable and promising development environment for developers. Guess I'll go out and order a thousand for my company tomorrow. If I can decide which one will be around next year.
    /snark

    • EricE

      "Guess I’ll go out and order a thousand for my company tomorrow. If I can decide which one will be around next year."

      It's hilarious when the same people who criticize Apple for not divulging future product plans in corporate america then turn around and tout Android as the second coming in the enterprise market.

      A shame such delicious irony is lost on them – their cluelessness is our gain :)

    • Yuvamani

      As a developer, the only graph I need

      http://www.engadget.com/2010/09/12/android-2-x-no

      BTW computers (and phones) have had differing resolutions for decades. Developers have dealt with it in the past and will do so again

  • Gandhi

    Like herding cats

  • Jim

    The test will come when a significant percentage of these devices eschew Google services, thus denying the mothership of its income stream. Verizon has thrown down the first gauntlet, thanks to the coin tossed in by Microsoft. This precedent leaves Android devices open to the highest bidder. It would be the height of irony for Google to have to pay a carrier or manufacturer for the privilege of having its applications and portals on devices that use its own operating system.

    Google has few options as it must give away the OS for free. It could withhold new releases and updates but once a release is available for one device, it is not difficult (albeit considerable work) to adapt it to any device. Add to this the fact that Verizon users will be getting deluged with Windows Phone 7 adverts over the next three months….. How much money is Google making from the Android ecosystem?

    • Yuvamani

      google still makes the best apps and services for android.

      There are tons of Android phones to choose from. I will avoid the crapware loaded ones….

  • http://, Iphoned

    Ah Google, they gave us Wave, G.Buzz, countless other apps whose names I can't remember, and now Android…more to celebrate soon…

  • yowsers

    the unguided missile has flown (good one, that..)

    it's probably too late for them to try to build in some license mechanism for where Google services are blocked, license fees kick in. the more services are redirected or altered to the detriment of Google, the higher the licensing fee climbs. That is, block or alter no services, license = free.

    the unblocked service is more valuable to Google, the license fee just takes a bit of the sting away

  • berult

    The strategy for Google is all about preemption. In order to prevent iOS from "ipoding" the market before a major Chrome platform counterstrike, Google is simply flooding the market with the Android OS place holder.

    A temporary stifling of iOS's all around potency will presumably buy some much needed development time for the perceived competitive advantage of Chrome OS to fully bloom. Android eats up precious market share at a crucial moment in Mobile exponential expension.

    Google takes the Geeks community, manuacturers, internet service providers, tech bloggers, on a quick and easy profit ride, creates revenue dependancies, gets a vastly expandig ad market in the process, isolates his most creative competitor from the "left behind" crowd, and works its geek engineering mindset into a frenzy for a clash for the ages with Chrome vs ios.

    There is more, or less in a way, to Android than meets the eyes. Remember, Google looks at the world through the lense of the self serving, ego driven geek who could buy and sell the world on a few lines of esoteric code!

    • ericgen

      Your scenario is an intriguing hypothesis and a clever plan. Android could be the Trojan Horse to get inside all of the stakeholders camps that you've listed and also the test bench for Google to learn the ropes with. Once they figure out what works and what doesn't, they make the improvements to ChromeOS, including the appropriate licensing adjustments, and then quit supporting Android. All of the Android players are then stuck with the choice of trying to maintain the Android OS themselves, choosing a viable alternate OS (which likely won't exist), or accepting Googles new licensing terms and restrictions to use Chrome OS.

      It's clever, and might even work, if they can actually make Chrome OS something elegant and viable as an alternative to iOS. However, their recent releases of various software products don't really support the idea that they "get it" and have a clue about the general consumer.

      It may be interesting to watch this all play out. Google clearly thinks that they are very smart. They may discover that there's a significant difference between being intelligent and being wise and knowledgeable with a sense of taste.

      • http://www.oranged.to/2010/09/10/android-and-fragm Dingbat

        You are assuming that chrome is designed to compete with the ipad / iphone OS. I don't see any driver for apple to compete in the cloud given that they have such a huge reliance on itunes and the app store as a revenue stream. At the end of the day they have always been very specific about chrome being a suitable netbook/cloud operating system which does not suit the mobile market to the same extent as the itunes appstore/android market model that currently exists. Moving forward as mobile carriers develop the network coverage and quality it may change but it will take a very long time.

    • David Chu

      A little too complicated for a conspiracy theory.

      More likely, they had two camps advocating different philosophies and they decided to throw both out in the wild to see which wins. Discontinuing support to Android would catastrophically hurt their brand.

      There isn't much evidence in Google's recent actions that suggest that they put the level of deep thought you suggest. Remember when they acquired an open source video technology laced with patent problems and tried to convince everyone that they wouldn't be sued for using it?

      What company is going to trust working with Google if they pull a move like this off?

    • famousringo

      So I'm a handset manufacturer that relied heavily on Android, and I have to decide what to do now that Android has been axed and Google wants me to use Chrome instead. Do I:

      A) Shrug my shoulders, throw away everything I've invested in Android and start all over again as Google commands. They know software, I'm just the hardware guy.

      B) Double-down on Android and start my own fork of the OS. Sure, I might not have experienced OS programmers (yet), but I've got my own UI and custom apps already, plus established branding and customers to think of. Android isn't dead just because Google has abandoned it.

      C) I hear there's a little company called Microsoft that eagerly wants back into the smartphone market, and desprately needs hardware partners to do so. Maybe they outmaneuvered their hardware partners to get the lion's share of PC profits, but at least they never stabbed them in the back.

      I think that if Google were to try a bait-and-switch of this magnitude, they would discover they had overplayed their hand.

      • Vertti

        "but at least they never stabbed them in the back."

        You are talking about Microsoft right? They of all things have stabbed so many partners in the back that it is unbelievable. Let's take example… "PlayForSure". Microsoft is ready to "kill" anybody or all of them if they think it is necessary and everybody knows that from their own experience. The thing that Google has started to act like Microsoft is bad news to those who tought that Google would be better partner than the Microsoft.

      • EricE

        "The thing that Google has started to act like Microsoft is bad news to those who tought that Google would be better partner than the Microsoft."

        Here's the real exposure of the myth that Windows succeeded due to variety and partners. For every platform other than Windows, no one has been able to duplicate Microsoft's success (even Microsoft – just look at their mobile, plays for sure, zune, xbox and other ecosystems).

        The harsh realities is partnerships are liabilities and incur overhead. There are multiple reasons that Apples profit margins are so high – but the biggest is they share with no one and have total control over their destiny. It's the single biggest reason they are struggling against things like inadequate production volume due to incredible demand instead of fierce competitors that have sucked the cream out of the environment leaving them to scramble for scraps at the bottom.

    • Narayanan

      I agree.

      In fact, this hypothesis is corroborated in parts by what Vic G said at the May event. Chrome is obviously being shaped in the background, learning from the Android mistakes, so that when it comes out it will be a full fledged OS for mobile systems including phones, tablets etc.

      Google is trying its best to predict where the puck is going and the million dollar question is whether Apple can upend them?

    • Tim F.

      The problem with this theory is ChromeOS does not make for a good smartphone OS. It's not even clear if it will make a good tablet OS as it was designed for netbooks (when it was still thought they would be big) and as a cheap way to erode Windows on the desktop.

      It's too easy to forget how well Apple has adapted iOS to multiple form factors. With 6 months under the iPad's belt, Google still hasn't adapted Android for tablets — hell, they are still stuck trying to get more than 5 flagship devices to support Froyo months later.

  • Iphoned

    It seems Foxcon just revealed that they are making 137k iphones a day. http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/category/apple-2-0/

    Compare that to Google's "250k/day" Android activations…which are mostly phones I believe.

  • Tom

    Gartner estimates Sep.10,2010, with current and projected growth, that Android shipments will be double iPhone shipment by 2014. I suspect that won't pan out because–
    1. The telcos will break apart android until consumers can't stand it.
    2. Apple's production constraints will be solved.
    3. WP7 won't replace faltering android share.
    4. No one else will, either.

  • Tom

    apple Tim Cook, COO, said it all.
    Apple is a company focused on value, satisfaction, and quality — not quantity. "We have never been about being the biggest, we’ve always been about making the best products, not having highest market share or most revenue."

    • EricE

      “We have never been about being the biggest, we’ve always been about making the best products, not having highest market share or most revenue.”

      Yup, and by focusing on that they ensure they will naturally have the highest volume.

      It's far better to ship better products than to try to convince people of your product superiority through superior marketing. "You can fool some of the people…."

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