May, 06 2008

There aren’t yet any predicted sales figures for Android enabled phones – heck, we still don’t know what phones will be the first to have Android – but Google exec Rich Miner has already claimed that Android Phones will outsell iPhones.

Them be some fightin’ words.

His Reasoning? “Once you have devices out there from Motorola, HTC, Samsung and so on, there’s a much larger potential market for Android than the iPhone.” Thank you Mr. Miner… that’s what we’ve been trying to explain to Apple Fanboys ever since the iPhone SDK was released. In addition, the iPhone has “a single manufacturer” and it’s “targeted at a particular demographic”.

Android will be the clear winner, and Rich Miner pinpointed some of the basic reasons why. Now obviously, the strength of each platform will need success by its own merit – these issues alone won’t take Android beyond the iPhone. But all else being equal, Android has unlimited potential for market share and growth while you could argue the iPhone is pigeon holed to particular niche by a particular manufacturer and even a particular wireless carrier (at the moment).

Although the iPhone SDK reached 100,000 quicker than its Android counterpart, Android SDK downloads now near 1 million and it doesn’t even have a device to taut. Motorola, Samsung, HTC and LG are all part of the Open Handset Alliance and all expect to release an Android enabled phone in the latter part of 2008. Miner suggested that HTC would be first to market.

And while Miner was optimistic about Android, he didn’t completely dismiss Apple’s progress. Instead, he suggested that each had different markets and there was plenty of room for both. In fact, if he was a developer, he would be developing for both platforms.

The iPhone SDK has received mostly praise, excitement and glowing reviews but it should be pointed out that there are some real skeptics who haven’t been as kind in their criticism as Rich Miner. Zac Bowling for example called the iPhone SDK a joke.

He leads off his scathing review by saying, “The developer program is turning out to be bunch of hype for something stupid. The restrictions on what your application is allowed to do is total, laugh-out-loud, crap.”

Android has its fair share of detractors as well, but one thing is certain: a lot of people will be referencing Miner’s quote when people are comparing iPhone and Android enabled phone sales come Christmas time.

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