I do think Android will continue to grow
Android has already passed iOS in the US, in terms of new sales. iOS is now in 4th place worldwide, and falling (in terms of marketshare) - behind Symbian, RIM, and Android.
- but the problem with Android is the Open Source and loose management of the OS.
That's what allowed Windows to explode and dominate - making the OS and API open for anyone to buy and use and build upon. It's a winning strategy; closed systems lose every time.
Apple is 'safe' in that because it's a 'closed garden' viri and malware is screened.
Really? In just the last few months we've seen multiple security holes (ACE - arbitrary code execution - holes) like the jailbreakme.com one which completely rooted and reloaded the ROM in your iPhone from simply visiting a website, and "malware" like the flashlight app that was really a WIFI router (and was sold in the App Store until users tattled on it - completely violated Apple's App Store rules, and their "screening" didn't catch it at all).
In fact, Apple once again patched a bunch of ACE holes just yesterday. There's a reason that iOS is jailbroken as soon as new versions are released - it's very vulnerable to ACE exploits which is how it's jailbroken.
Android has already had some malware and ID theft issues.
And those would be?
Unless Google tightens the reigns, this insecurity could be their demise. No one wants their credit card numbers stolen by their phone.
How is it worse than iPhone? And in fact, most companies like to have control over their assets and platforms; Apple's attempt to lock-you-in to their own little restricted garden and app tools doesn't help.
Windows owns the desktop/laptop market because it's APIs are public, and control and use of the OS is unrestricted, and versions are supported for more than 3-4 years. Long term support for even 15-20 year old products (I run a few Win95-only apps on Win 7 x64 without a problem) and the open-use nature of the OS wins every time. Create what you want, in the language you want, for distribution as you see fit, without any interference from Microsoft.
Android has the same freedom, and you even get the source code so - if you're an enterprise - you can make changes as desired (like full encryption of everything - including communications - if you want), and support it forever, since you have the source code.
Extensibility and support are critical to the enterprise, and Android excels at that compared to iOS.
While Apple may not be a panacea, it 'IS' regulated. And while I was not quick enough to get the 'Flashlight' App, the fact that it was found and removed is evident that there is a screen in place. The 'wireless router' was an 'easter egg'. While I may disagree with this; there is an implied safety in this approach.
And yes, if there is a desire to open the 'walled garden'; there will be a means. The latest Bootrom hack is pretty much hardware based - any iPad/iPhone or iPod currently on the market is vulnerable. You must connect to the PC to do this, as this hack hit's the low level boot firmware on the iPhone. The only way for Apple to fix this is to re-program the low-level boot layer. Personally, my intention is to jailbreak my iPhone so I can use MiFi.
My belief, my ethics allows me to use MY property in any manner I see fit. Recently, the courts sided with my approach. I'm paying for a 2GB/month dataplan, I own my iPHone and I own an iPad. If I want to tether the two together - I see no reason AT&T should extort an additional $20 from me to do so. Same data rate, same data quantity per month - just a larger display.
The difference, as I see it is that MSFT and a PC are implied program running machines. My phone is a communications device with cute little gadgets. I don't mind paying for anti-virus, trojan or malware protection for my PC - that goes with the ability to run any program.
However, when it comes to my cell phone - my perception is different. I don't want my phone calls monitored, my location spied upon, my text messages relayed to an unseen destination, and expecially any secure financial tranactions shared. So, because the cell phone is such a 'personal' device, I prefer the iPhone's approach.
Now, when I jailbreak do I intend to run 'pirated' software? Nope, in fact I will most certainly NOT do that. Why? Because, IMHO the applications I purchase through iTunes are both reasonably priced and because Apple has screened them.
However, I fully intend to utilize MiFi, because I cannot get this functinoality without paying what I feel to be extortion to AT&T. This, IMHO, is like paying a premium to use the Speakerphone on your cell phone. Same phone call, same phone time - but now multiple listeners can participate in a conversation.
I don’t get the love for the “open” nature of Android. There is a core Android OS that is open and available for download. It may be useful for Linux hackers and hobbyists. Beyond that, the implementations on most devices are proprietary — Android plus proprietary drivers, applications (even apps that are part of the standard expected Android experience), user interfaces, etc. Try to mod a firmware and post it, get threatened by the phone maker and Google to take it down.
This is not “open” like regular desktop Linux. In fact, OS X and iOS are based on the open-source Darwin BSD, but we don’t call them “open” because in practice they are closed.
On top of all this, Android phone makers are starting to put locks on their phones just like Apple does, requiring a jailbreak to use anything but an official version. How “open” is that?