The team Apple-IBM has definitely been a surprise for many. They have already been strong by themselves and now that they are together they will definitely be quite a menace for other players on the market. However, this partnership does not mean the end for Android and the devices running on this operating system.
There many who say that the Apple-IBM partnership is going to kick out both Microsoft and Android out of big companies. Obviously, they are exaggerating a bit. Android has proven to be a good operating system and it is not going to leave its market share just like this and vanish overnight.
There are specialists in the domain who claim that the partnership between IBM and Apple represents an enormous loss for Google and at the same time a setback for Android. They bring forward the argument that this association removes Apple weakness when it comes to its offer for enterprises. Not to mention that the iOS is going to be backed up by IBM whose reputation among business cannot be questioned. This is not at all good news for Android and gadget running on it.
Is the Apple-IBM partnership that powerful after all?
People involved or interested in the electronics domain should keep in mind that the IBM-Apple partnership is nothing more than a sales deal, and business deals do not last forever. It has to be considered the fact that IBM is not the only player on the enterprise market while Apple has quite a terrible history of team working with other companies.
Enterprises are supplied with software not only by IBM but also by other powerful players like Microsoft, HP or Dell. To these we have to add Google Apps and numerous other minor companies. The association is positive for Apple and IBM but it does not meant the end of Android.
It cannot be denied that both companies have competent staff. The secret weapon of IBM has always been its share of independent partners, who have always created a series of custom solution based on the offerings made by IBM.
IBM as well has the habit of breaking up contracts with its partners. Thus, most of times their partners spend a lot of time and energy worrying that IBM might just walk out of the business, taking with them the deal as well. Apple also likes to have things done according to its wishes. It is highly unlikely for Apple to produce an iPhone or an iPad tailored according to the specific demands of a certain enterprise, no matter how big it is.
It is true that Apple will turn into reality a feature like a fingerprint sensor home button, but there are little chances for it to make a new version of iOS just because a certain client wants some sort of low-level security options. Apple is difficult to work with because of its strange team philosophy: it is either our way or nothing. IBM is not far from that either.
Is Android History?
Android is far from being history. The system is designed for flexibility and this is not an adjective that can be used to describe Apple. Although famous, the iOS system is quite limited and it can be used only on certain devices. It cannot be like the Android. Moreover, Android can be adjusted to almost any form-factor/price needed by the client. Apple and its iOS cannot be labeled as such.
An example of the flexibility that characterizes the Android systems was given two years ago when Android was used for creating military hardened kernels to be used in battle.
It is important as well to mention Samsung’s success with the Knox, especially created for companies. Lots of systems created for the management of mobile gadgets can function with Android. This is almost impossible with the iOS platform.
On the other hand, IBM is not at its first attempt to handle devices. Most people in the electronics business remember how at the end of the 1990s and the beginning of the 2000s IBM tried to resuscitate the Palm gadgets and gave them the name of WorkPads. In the end the business did not end up very well for Palm.
What will happen when IBM brings in a customer that needs a custom tablet application and on top of that wants the screen to show only that application? Is Apple going to do that? Delete all applications? Doubtful.
Android offers users access to any system they need. They are not limited to the icons on the screen. The home screen can be replaced and the user can create a solution that suits his/her needs. This cannot be done with iOS. For instance, the Newsstand application is always there and it cannot even be hidden in a folder or somewhere else.
Android has the possibility to offer businesses exactly what they want. It can offer them devices that have the required dimensions, colours and even case material. Apple will not do this; it does not comply with its philosophy.
Another thing to keep in mind is that although the American market is big, it is not the only one. There are quite some many nations that want solutions for enterprises and government institutions that do not come from an American company. Take China for example: Huawei can give the Chinese people, all the gadgets they want, minus the fears of cyber espionage.
Is Android going to be removed from the enterprise mobile devices market? The answer is a definite no. The IBM-Apple teaming up is nothing more but a sales deal. It is common for IBM to make such deal. It cannot be denied that IBM knows how to close a good deal for itself but the history of its partnerships point out that their associates did not manage to reach their goals.
Android is a powerful and efficient competitor. It is extremely popular because it is flexible, it has cheap suppliers and it has the ability to mould on the users’ desires and wants. These characteristics have helped Android to face fierce competitors like Dell or Google.
In conclusion, Android is nowhere near to lose the battle for the enterprise market. It is true that the competition is going to be even harder than it is now, but Android has the chance of coming out as the winner. The IBM-Apple team might resist the Android dominance for a while, but there a few chances from wiping it out from the market.