Roger Hamilton

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Roger Hamilton-The man who is beating STEVE JOBS at his own game
Have you heard of Andy Rubin? That's OK, most people haven't - Even though today he's
Apple's greatest threat since Bil Gates in the 1980s.
Andy's little brain-child, Android, has gone from an idea 7 years ago to now accounting for
72% of the 181 mil ion smart phone global smartphones sold in the last quarter, compared
to just 14% for Apple. Android phones are now outselling Apple 5 to 1, with 1....3 million
new Android activitations EVERY DAY.
Who is Andy Rubin? He was an engineer at Apple in the early 1990s with Apple's `General
Magic' team, designing the first mobile software platform. He left to create his own
operating system and PDA called `Sidekick' - before the ipod was launched. It failed, and
by 2003 Andy was back at the drawing board.
Fast forward to 2005, and a meeting between Andy and Google's Larry Page. Did Larry
want to endorse Andy's new mobile operating system Android? (Named after a robot
sidekick). Larry did one better, buying over the entire team, including Andy for somewhere
around $50 mil ion, as a way to compete in the new smartphone market. At that point,
there was still not a single smartphone using Android. It was simply $50m to buy the
invention and the inventor.
Andy got to work at Google. This week, 7 years on, Google's Eric Schmidt declared victory
on the smartphone war with Android, saying to Bloomberg: "This is a huge platform
change; this is of the scale of 20 years ago - Microsoft versus Apple. We're winning that
pretty clearly now."
Today, phones using Android are growing at 92% per year compared to the market at 46%.
The growth in China Android is even greater (where Android is on 90% of the smartphones
sold) at 2.6x that - and China will have 500 million smartphones by the end of 2013:
Double the US market (That's compared to 200m China smartphones today and only 50m
one year ago).
In the 1980s, Apple fell from total dominance of the PC market to just 4% of the market as
Microsoft Windows took over from the Mac operating system. The same is happening now
with Google against Apple on a whole number of fronts:
The Android store, Google Play, has grown 300% this year compared to the Apple App
store's 13% growth. Google Play downloads will overtake Apple App store in the first half
of 2013. This week Google's map app went straight to the top of Apple's most downloaded
apps, undermining Apple's reputation of delivering better software. Google is also
innovating much faster than Apple on everything from mobile payments to voice
What am I personally doing in this sea change? Much as I love Apple, we are redirecting
more of our efforts on Android apps and Android phones and tablets than on Apple. We've
translated al our main sites and products to Chinese. And I'l also be expecting to write
about and interview many more Android app millionaires in 2013.
What is Andy's view on al of this? He prides the openness on Android but, being more of a
techie he prefers to let his coding speak for itself.
In 2010 Steve Jobs criticized Android in an open letter, writing `"Google loves to
characterize Android as open and iPhone as closed. We see this as disingenuous and
clouding the difference.'

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