The War of the Technology Giants

The war of the technology giants is back on. Sony may have just released an iPhone killer for all the amateur and pro photographers who have been looking for a companion to the SLR system. The new Sony QX100 & QX10 are designed to be companions for the poor grade glass and image sensors found in most cell phones. With Google and Apple as the kings of the mobile platform world with their IOS and Android devices, many competitors have been forced to find niches or been completely driven to the verge of extinction. For years Nokia and Blackberry have been trying to find their new niche / unique selling proposition as their market share shrunk. In recent years Nokia were targeting camera users, and over the weekend Nokia were acquired by Microsoft for 5 billion dollars. Many feel this filled two holes within Microsoft. I game them a feature rich phone system to push their windows mobile platform, and will help them fill some leadership roles with Balmer moving on later this year.

Both Microsoft & Apple are platform companies; this means that no matter what the business must support the expansion of windows (Xbox Live, Windows, Window Mobile) and IOS (iPhone, iPad, Mac / OSX.) In the past Microsoft has killed projects such as the courier tablet, because it was too new or radical and therefore required an unproven version of their operating system. Something that could have compromised the fiscal soul of the company. Google’s platform is obviously spearheaded through their Android and internet services, but have been criticized for the lack of integration between their Chrome & Android products. Apple for years has shown to be king of the platforms. The ease of IOS, iTunes, home sharing etc. Everything being simply plug and play.

Courier Tablet image courtesy of Engadget – You can view entire article about the courier tablet here.

We cannot predict the future but it is interesting seeing how recently Samsung has emerged as the hardware king of mobile phones, aligning with the Android OS, but they still do not offer a platform to publish content or connect users to the apps, services, and entertainment content they are looking for. They are the hardware providers and we know that sustainability comes from the platform. I am curious to understand how Microsoft, Apple & Google, will evolve their platforms. As they continue to buy up emerging disruptive businesses to converge and evolve their products, to buying up the old relics of the technology world in order to secure patents and technology beds. Will Samsung keep their throne, or will Qualcomm reign supreme as the silent technology giant that supplies the necessary processors for these companies to stay on top? Who will end up winning the battle of the cloud? Or maybe clouds are not the answer we should look to companies who believe in open source technology companies such as Mozilla who believe in non-proft structures and providing a free and open source web experience where the community decides and dictates the content provided; not the corporations.  Or  maybe we can dream of technology companies and the potential that could be; what would happen if Nintendo and Adobe were to partner and create a unique playful creative platform?

As Digital Designers, we must always be on the bleeding edge of the emerging trends and technology that drive our planet. Understanding the possibilities it creates and the people it connects. It is why we love what we do, and why tomorrow will be so exciting.


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