Tuesday, April 13, 2010
HTC Considers Its Own Smartphone Platform
Posted by Ed Hansberry in "Windows Phone Competition" @ 01:00 PM
It seems HTC is considering its own mobile platform, because, well, you know, there aren't enough choices out there. I can just imagine the ideas flowing in a brainstorming session on how to grow the company:
Creative Guy #1: So, how can we get more market share? This whole Microsoft partnership hasn't panned out so well for us the last year or so.
Creative Guy #2: Let's buy Palm. I hear they are for sale. We can work with WebOS.
Creative Guy #3: No, WebOS is old news. I know, let's create a NEW PLATFORM! We'll be the exclusive providers and make a mint!
Group nods in assent, pats each other on the back and goes out for pizza.
Now it is possible it didn't' quite happen this way, Whatever really happened, it must have been equally strange. We have today six major smartphone platforms - iPhone, Android, WebOS, Windows Mobile/Phone, Blackberry, and though I hesitate to add them because almost no one ever installs a third party app on it, Symbian. Now, let's not forget that Samsung is doing their own OS called Bada, a name that has an extraneous vowel at the end of it in my opinion. There is also Moblin and Maemo which are merging into MeeGo.
Furthermore, while I like HTC hardware, their UI enhancements leave a lot to be desired. There are maddening inconsistencies in how TouchFlo 3D works, especially those that remove good features in Windows Mobile. HTC is not, in my opinion, the one that should be coming up with an all new OS and UI. This is yet another reason they should just buy Palm and be done with it.
On top of all of this, we have super powerful feature phones and devices like the Kin, which target very specific audiences. The market needs consolidation, not more "me too" operating systems. What do you think? Do you generally like the idea that smartphone makers are turning out operating systems faster than GM can design cars that buyers want, or do you think the market needs to consolidate on three or four major platforms?