Two big successful companies clashing horns for mobile market dominance. Niether of these companies started with smart phones, but instead a diverse background of TVs, computers, MP3 players & Air Conditioners. They have grown into beasts who regally clash horns and take chunks out of each other. They do this while, trying to attract the mobile consumer market. They have their wounds and their trophies, but this war isn’t over. They may endlessly battle but also copy, so battling has made them stronger.
Mutual Product influences
Image via AllThingsD
Thirty years ago mobile phones weren’t around but in 2013 everyone and their dog has a phone. I even know multiple people who have several smart phones, so I am quite left out, and when I tell people I don’t own a phone I often get weird looks. Its 2013 and 17 year old App Developer and Second year Computer Science Major doesn’t even have a phone, well thats another story and I do want to change that fact. Wanting a phone maybe why the question of which phone is for me, is such an interesting question. In the picture above you can clearly see the effect of Apples design decisions on Samsung’s products. What is harder to show and isn’t shown there is Samsung’s effect on Apples products, over time and through Apples updates they have improved and added features that are clearly an influence from Android and Samsung. Product influence is not the only thing that is similar between the two companies.
Approach & Demographics
Apples approach since about when Steve Jobs returned (1996) has been, make the best and the consumer will love us for it, where as Samsung has a different approach. Apple have one phone product the iPhone, it has variations in capacity and colour but its still the one product. Personally I know a CEO and I know a homeless person and both of them have exactly the same iPhone. There iPhones were made in the same factory and they cost the same amount to them, the Samsung product rang offers a wider breath in prices. The apps these two people have on their phones are completely different. Consequently because they use their phones for different activities, but its the same phone with the same price tag. Where as Samsung has a huge range of phones, and these phones range in price and features, so that people find a device thats suites them. Through this marketing and product development decision Samsung has won customers that don’t want to conform to Apple and instead want a device designed for them. At the moment Samsung’s market share is faster growing than Apple, and so this is cause of though for me being an iOS Developer.
App Developer Dilema
Well as an App Developer I am around the mobile industry more than most, and also in a different way than the general population. Previously I mentioned how I am planning on getting a smart phone, well I have to make a decision. Up until this point I have only made iOS Apps but I feel that Android wouldn’t be overly difficult for me to pick up and that I would like to branch out into that segment. As a primarily iOS Developer and a Mac user I would personally prefer to buy a iPhone, but as an entrepreneur I would also like to expand my business opportunities by offering Android App Development. The way I would learn Android is by owning one and porting one of my existing apps to Android. Currently I have a small inner conflict. Do I follow personal preference or business opportunity?
Apple and Samsung both create products that are getting smarter and you can see that competition has healthy results on their current offerings. These two product ranges have quite broad demographics. Both companies supply great solutions with broad ranges of benefits, some factors which could sway your decision that are more specific could be price range, accessibility and availability of specific Apps. Both companies have great product offerings, and I can see no general major contributing factor in swaying you either way. Personally it would almost be smart to get both, but hey I don’t know whether or not the budget will agree with that.