Android Turns Four: What a Wild Ride
It was good to see that PCMag.com observed the fourth birthday of the Android mobile operating system. As noted in the post, "...the first Android-powered phone, the T-Mobile G1, launched on Sept. 23, 2008," (more than a year after the first iPhone arrived). Ironically, at the very beginning of 2009, PCMag.com published a widely read story asking the question: "Has Android Already Failed?" And, we found good reasons to ask that question here at OStatic. The truth about Android is that it is one of the most remarkable open source succes stories of all, partly because of how quickly it reached a huge audience.
In PCMag.com's 2009 story, most of the negativity surrounding Android came from the fact that there was only one handset and there wasn't even news of any others. "I'm starting to get seriously worried about the fate of Android, the open-source smartphone OS that was supposed to bring democracy, uniformity, and competition to the mobile world," wrote Sascha Segan. "Instead, it's just bringing a lot of vaporware."
We had the same concerns. But as PCMag's new post notes:
"Today, Android sits on the top of the platform heap in smartphone sales, beating its nearest rival (iOS) by roughly two to one in the U.S, and with Samsung far and away the sales leader. Android phones are great choices for consumers, for enterprises, for accessing the cloud, for enthusiasts hacking emulators and installing rogue OS builds—you name it and there's a market for it."
You can add to the that the fact that Android is spreading to many new kinds of devices. At the end of last year, in a post called "Why Android Will Surprise on the Upside in 2012," I cited that trend as one of the keys to the next chapter in the Android story. We're watching that next chapter play out now, even as Android is only four years young.