Right now the only serious competition the iPhone has is Google’s android platform. As with desktop OSes, what makes the winner is the available applications. Well, while the echoes from the iphone developers are, shall we say, rather positive, it seems the Android folks are having some tough time. Now let’s see, “Software providers finding it difficult to develop programs on a platform still going through revisions”, “Handset (i.e. hardware) manufacturers having a tough time integrating that software into their devices”… now where have I seen something like this already ?
So here’s a cheap prediction : android and the iphone will replicate the same pattern as linux and os/x, for the exact same reasons : unfocused bazaar community on one side, singled-minded well organised one on the other. Yes, android will likely go into a myriad of unexpected directions, appearing richer than the iphone. But it will never be able to achieve the same level of quality as the iphone, and will be just as confusing an offer as Linux.