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Google's Android Soon to Be Challenged? Get Real

Sean Udall

Another year and another prediction that Android (GOOG) will be in some sort of trouble... Yeah right -- but here is the link to a recent story on Google's Mobile OS Dominance May Be Ending Soon.

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What so many of these views fail to see is the checkmate to all of their inane arguments: the path and speed of the Android innovation curve.

Here are just a few examples:

-iOS (AAPL) "smartwatch": Android is already doing it.

-Smartphone glasses: Google was the first and Android is the OS.

-Wearable connectivity: Android has a two-year lead here, if not longer.

-Curved screens: Android had this with the Nexus S in 2010.

-Real time geo/location functions: Again, GOOG/Android has been ahead for a couple years and is literally improving daily.

-Connected TVs: Android been here for at least a year now.

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I could name a good many others, but I think the examples above clearly illustrate the point. Seeing or predicting other mobile operating systems coming to the forefront and challenging Android again fails to offer a defense against Android's chief strength -- speed of innovation.

In my view, there are only two real challenges to Android and they are already in the market. These challenges are security and ease of use. Apple has ease of use down pat. The first iPhone offered a real "easy clean simple" OS framework. The Apple iOS is here, and to me that is (and actually has been) the key strength -- the "It just works" moniker.

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Android has improved a lot in terms of security, but any time you lead in innovation, you will suffer in security. Research In Motion (RIMM) still has the edge here, though it's thinner than it was two or three years back. iOS is also stronger in security but again, less so than it was two or three years ago.

The bottom line: I don't see a Samsung (SSNLF) or NOK (NOK) or startup-sponsored OS being able to keep up with the Android innovation curve as long as GOOG stays on its current path. Thus, as I said nearly three years ago now, Android is the Wintel of mobility OS and Eric Schmidt has been echoing that view of late.