How the selection of your next phone got easy –

Not in a good way, or the way you might expect.

Rambling inspired by a recent article on CNN – What makes Apple so sticky

Not too long ago, when you bought a phone or a portable CD player, you would decide what functionality you wanted and bought the coolest looking device that fit your budget.  You were likely re-keying every phone number into your mobile’s address book no matter which one you bought.  So its 2004 and the battery in your Nokia phone no longer holds a charge – you go out and buy a Motorola Razr.

Now its 2010 and you’ve broken your second iPhone – are you going to go out and buy a Nexus One?  This time, its different.  You’ve got 10 puzzle games, that noise making app, and hundreds of dollars of music and video from the iTunes store.  You can’t throw that away.

Its starting to look like the 1980s again.  You buy a PC running MS-DOS to run Lotus.  And then you buy WordPerfect.  And then you can’t switch, because you’ve got so much invested in the PC platform, that you just buy a newer, faster one.  And before you know it, Bill Gates becomes the richest man on earth selling operating system licenses.

Perhaps its still early enough in the mobile platform game that Google can make a run at it with Android, or if everyone at Nokia and Intel crosses their fingers at the same time, perhaps they’ll pull it off with MeeGo.  If I were behind these two efforts, I’d take a look at what Palm attempted to do with WebOS, and attempt to get my system to work with iTunes.  Take a look at this fun column written by Joel Spolsky on how to take on an established competitor.

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