Philip Elmer-DeWitt digs up a different view on the Apple vs. Google, iPhone vs. Android battles in Fortune.
Developer Don Dodge on Apple:
The Mac has never had more than 10% market share, but has been extremely profitable for Apple. Apple goes for the high end of the market where they can charge high prices and enjoy great profit margins. Apple has been successful with this strategy multiple times, and will do it again with iPhone.
Google has a very different strategy with Android. Google provides software (Android) for free, and makes Google search, Google Voice, Gmail, Contacts, Maps, Places, and other services work seamlessly with Android. Mobile search and advertising are the revenue streams for Google. The advertising revenues are certainly lower versus selling hardware, but the profit margins are very good.
Google’s Tim Bray on Apple:
I wouldn’t be surprised if Apple shipped a cheap iPhone… Which is to say, it would be sort of surprising, but not that much, if this time next year, dirt-cheap iPhones were competing against Androids that push the user-experience lever farther than Apple or anyone else ever has. In that scenario, where are the prognosticators’ towers of sand?
Is this really a battle between Apple and Google, iPhone and Android phones? Or, are Apple and Google’s objectives different?