Despite all those innovative heroics, the iPhone’s marketshare continues to drop faster than the president’s approval ratings. Here’s a radically crazy idea to end that–both brilliant and impossible but a lot of fun to think about.
Who Does What And Why?
When surveying the smartphone and tablet industry, it pays to understand how each of the players make money.
Apple has always been a hardware company. To Apple, that’s where the money is. Software is created simply to sell more hardware.
That means Apple’s hardware and software are melded together in an attractive seamless, highly usable package.
Google, despite selling some hardware here and there (Google never announces how many units), is mostly an advertising company that creates software that people use, and when they use it, Google collects data and sells it to advertisers (along with ads to match).
Microsoft, now lancing the boil on the toe it used to step into the smartphone and tablet hardware business, has always been about software that runs on all kinds of hardware, including Apple’s Mac.
That sets the stage for this gigantic enormous radically crazy and stupidly brilliant idea to get a little marketshare back from Google’s ubiquitous Android. So, with tongue firmly planted in cheek, let’s put iOS on non-Apple hardware.
iOS On Android
Google puts software on Android, on iOS devices, on Microsoft devices, and on Windows PCs. What would happen to the marketplace if Apple put out a version of iOS just for Android devices?
How does that differ from putting OS X on riffraff personal computers (and idea forged by tech writers and pundits everywhere)?
What’s iOS on Android worth? $10? The math is wrong but it supports the business proposition (which is what crazy tech pundits do all the time). With nearly a billion Android smartphones sold each year, a mere 10-percent penetration of a limited version of iOS on Android would bring in $1-billion.
That’s not chump change. Besides Apple and Samsung, name another smartphone or tablet maker raking in that kind of dough?
Apple would also benefit by selling apps, music, TV shows, and movies through iOS on Android. iTunes isn’t just a hobby, folks.
I know. It’s a ridiculous idea with no viable merit whatsoever.
The hundreds of Android hardware configurations alone would be an enormous deterrent. Still, though, how is this idea different than critics telling Apple to build a cheap $99 iPhone? All the manufacturers who do that lose money. At least with my way, and a spreadsheet projection which says so, Apple would make more money than most Android smartphone manufacturers.