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Can Any Smartphone Platform Overcome the Android/iOS Duopoly? 404

Nerval's Lobster writes "The company formerly known as Research In Motion—which decided to cut right to the proverbial chase and rename itself 'BlackBerry'—launched its much-anticipated BlackBerry 10 operating system at a high-profile event in New York City Jan. 30. Meanwhile, Microsoft is still dumping tons of money and effort into Windows Phone. But can either smartphone OS — or another player, for that matter — successfully challenge Apple iOS and Google Android, which one research firm estimated as running on 92 percent of smartphones shipped in the fourth quarter of 2012? What would it take for any company to launch that sort of successful effort?"
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Can Any Smartphone Platform Overcome the Android/iOS Duopoly?

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  • by neiras ( 723124 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @04:35PM (#42754721)

    Does it matter if we are legally prohibited from unlocking our phones to make any modifications to the software or firmware?

    You are not legally prohibited from making modifications to software or firmware.

    The recent law that prohibits unlocking refers only to the unlocking process that allows you to use any SIM card you want in your phone.

    You are still free to jailbreak or root your devices, install the operating system of your choice, etc. None of that has anything to do with unlocking your phone.

  • Re:firefox or ubuntu (Score:3, Informative)

    by h4rr4r ( 612664 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @04:39PM (#42754769)

    How is a nexus phone locked down?
    I have a Debian chroot is that not enough?

  • by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @04:57PM (#42754997)

    We have enterprise support for android and apple without any issues at all. You need new IT people.

  • Re:firefox or ubuntu (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 31, 2013 @05:16PM (#42755203)

    Uhhh, no, it uses drivers written for linux, it also runs ARM ELF binaries just fine - it's Linux down there. How else would it run chrooted Debian?

    The problem with updates is that drivers for most parts of devices, especially radio parts, are very much proprietary and patent-encumbered.

    And yep, that'll limit your Ubuntu phone happiness. Unless there'll be profitable completely open source hardware, you won't see much of those phones and you'll get same problems with updates.

    You can unlock and try to flash newer Android version on many unofficially supported devices, and you might even get it _somewhat_ working, but what use it will be with barely working reverse engineered radio drivers and preliminary GPU support?

  • by ArhcAngel ( 247594 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @05:56PM (#42755693)

    Android and IOS just don't have really good tools to integrate with business.

    I'm curious what you feel they are missing.


    Everything you mention except remote wipe are for the end user. When people talk about tools to integrate with business they are usually referring to enterprise infrastructure integration tools. The problem is...The end user usually outnumbers the enterprise admin 200 to 1 so you have 200 people all going "It does what I need it to do" and 1 guy desperately trying to get anybody to listen to him about the inadequacies of the overall system. For enterprise the phone is but one piece to a very large whole. BlackBerry designed an enterprise system whereas Apple and Google designed a consumer oriented ecosystem. The former allows for fine granular control from the infrastructure to be pushed outward. The latter allows the end user to get stuff from iTunes/GooglePlay. From the very first BB phone connected to a BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES) the infrastructure group was able to mandate policies on the device. There are third party policy tools to manage iOS devices in the enterprise but they are not as mature or feature rich as BES. Of course the new BES 10 actually has built in support for iOS/Android devices now which could aid in enterprise adoption of these platforms but BlackBerry will be making money off of each device with a seat license. But BB 10 upgrades can use existing licenses. BlackBerry wins either way.

Beware of Programmers who carry screwdrivers. -- Leonard Brandwein