Saturday, December 01, 2007

Google Will Dominate Mobile Like it Does Search

I think Google will dominate mobile phones like it does search, in just the same way that Microsoft dominates PCs.

Google announced, at the beginning of this month, their play in the mobile phone market - Android. This anticipated "Gphone" is not a phone at all - but an operating system. An open source operating system based on Linux. And they didn't announce this alone, they announced it alongside over 30 organizations all forming the open handset alliance - an alliance formed to develop free, open standards for mobile phones.

This alone may be a bigger play than the iPhone simply because any phone can be a Gphone.

Now if this isn't big enough - let's tale this a step further:

The connection of Google's open platform for mobile devices and their announcement of an open platform for social networking, opensocial, creates speculation about a combination of the two creating a massive mobile open social network that will help catapult the android phone platform into the same position in mobile as Google currently holds in search.

Networks already supporting opensocial, MySpace, Linked in, Salesforce, Hi5, Ning, Plaxo and Friendster to name a few, are already bringing well over 200 million registered users.

The potential for this mobile social network is clear once you've seen the incredible applications developed for android that are just waiting for the phones to be available.

Heck you'd think Google invented social networking on the web in this 57 minute campfire video on the announcement of OpenSocial.

Overall, I see the new mobile standardized OS battle playing out very similarly to the original Apple and Microsoft battles... you know, back in the day, when Apple made a beautiful operating system and sold it bundled with perfectly designed hardware, while Microsoft "just" made an almost as good operating system that ran on any hardware. Microsoft's OS approach proved to be the clear winner in the market. It created an almost universal platform for application development, and spawned an era of incredible pace and volume of application development and adoption.

This time around it's Google and Apple instead of Microsoft and Apple. Google takes the place of Microsoft this time, except with an open operating system - and the incredibly compelling advantage of built in, GPS enabled mobile social networking that's already well past critical mass.

Combine Android and open handset alliance with opensocial, and it's clear that Google is positioned well to make a play to combine and dominate the mobile phone market through an open standards operating system a mobile social network with critical network mass.

Google may well dominate the mobile audience as it does the search audience today.

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