More expert thoughts on the Apple vs. Samsung rivalry

Maureen Aylward

Recent news that Apple has taken over the top spot in the smartphone sector leads us to wondering about Samsun and Nokia. We asked our Zintro experts about the market dynamics and how things in the smartphone sector will shake out over the next few months.

Jacob Meitav, an expert in semiconductor engineering, says that the rivalry is based on the cLinux derivative, Android. “Apple is the innovator of the smartphone world, and its rival Samsung came along with a most effective weapon: an Android-based operating system. Apple will probably switch to or adopt an Android version to keep its paramount positioning,” predicts Meitav. “As for Nokia, it is like an old hero from the past. It was a company that just a few years ago held the top position of over 35 percent of the mobile phone market, but it lost touch by misreading the new trends. Any cooperation based on its old and outdated operating system will be in vain, even if Microsoft is in the loop.”

Richard Watson, a wireless product manager, thinks that as mobility dominates the worldwide communication markets, the iPhone and Android smartphones will battle for how to maximize support of wireless applications. “No longer is basic telephony sufficient for the masses. The winner will be the one who can support the most applications of all kinds. Nokia has lost North America and Europe, the Middle East, and Africa because of its basic focus on phones and coming late to the super-smartphone and wireless PAD devices,” says Watson. “I think the iPhone and Android battle will dominate the wireless unified communications market for some time to come. RIM will also lose its edge because of its slow response to the new wireless application demands.”

Aatral Arasu, a telecom and mobile industry expert, thinks that Samsung smartphones have copy cat features of the iPhone. “Some of the Samsung smartphones look similar to the iPhone in design as well as the user interface. Samsung is one of the major hardware vendors for Apple, and Samsung tablet sales are competing with Apple’s iPad,” he says. “Patent lawsuits and licensing over Android vendors by Microsoft, Apple, and Oracle are some of the key things to watch for in the next few months.”

Jeff Griffin, an expert in mobile device applications, says that the key market dynamics have been driven by consumer cost over the past five years. “Apple introduced the content marketplace into the mobile space with iTunes and instantly created the place where buyers and sellers trade content,” Griffin says. “Nokia, with Symbian Series 60, did not have a marketplace that was relevant. Samsung focused on excellent industrial design and supply chain management while opting out of strategic software for the most part.”

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