Without radical change in patent law, Android's ecosystem will die

Summary:Only the invalidation of Apple's utility and design patents will save Android from possible extinction as a widely-used mobile device platform.

Which brings us to a side topic: the fate of Research in Motion and the BlackBerry platform, and whether or not Windows Phone will emerge as its natural replacement.

Strong Windows Phone adoption would damage RIM, because the core of what RIM is trying to do is secure enterprise messaging and Windows Phone 8 has that same core functionality.

One might think that Apple's victories in the courts would make RIM's platform more viable, but that would be a very foolish line of reasoning.

RIM would derive very little benefit from Apple's patent victories other than the fact that Apple doesn't see them as a major blip on their radar screen.

RIM is still going to go down the toilet at the same accelerated rate as before, unless by some miracle, BlackBerry OS 10 is a crazy hit with consumers, the developers take to building QNX apps like flies on dung, the PlayBook rises from the dead like <insert your favorite religious icon here> and the enterprise reverses course on dumping their BlackBerries like yesterday's fish wrapping.

Still, I cannot predict what goes on in the complex minds of consumers. I can only analyze industry patterns and see if there are common trends that emerge.

But I don't think there is really room for three or four major platforms, there's room for two at best, especially given the horrendous economy we're all saddled with. I've made that argument in the past and I continue to stand by it today.

I think that the new Nokia products that were just introduced, the Lumia 920 and 820 look like excellent products and the PureView photographic technology that they are bringing to the table is phenomenal, which may give them an advantage.

But I am not sure the Finnish handset manufacturer can generate enough sales in a rapid enough fashion in CY 2013 to keep them above water.

We'll see how Samsung's Windows Phone 8 offerings do next year.

Topics: Android, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Samsung

About

Jason Perlow, Sr. Technology Editor at ZDNet is a technologist with over two decades of experience with integrating large heterogeneous multi-vendor computing environments in Fortune 500 companies. Jason is currently a Partner Technology Strategist with Microsoft Corp. His expressed views do not necessarily represent those of his employer... Full Bio

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