Android to Fend Off iPhone Using Great Wall of China?

What if Android could tap into that 1 billion potential mobile phone customers in China, while having little threat coming from the iPhone? Sounds impossible right? Well not according to Analysts Bill Hughes who predicts that Android-based phones will increase to 17.1 million in 2009, following a slow start in 2008 of 500,000 units. He didn’t stop there – he went on to say that Android will outsell iPhones about 3 to 1, or 96.9 million units to 33.4 million units by 2012 with a majority of those sales coming from China.

Hughes says that China will put a lot of muscle behind the Android platform mainly because its free and is Linux, unlike the iPhone which has a proprietary OS based on Unix. If Google keep playing the role of the good guys with the Chinese government it is possible that Android could be chosen as the Linux Mobile OS of choice for the whole of China. That alone could spell doom for competitors hoping to crack into the Chinese market.

Do you remember a certain Ministry of Economic Affairs wanting a Google Android Test Center in Taiwan? To me, that is a little bit of proof that Google be getting in bed with the Chinese. Who knows what they could be doing when the light goes out… Let your imagination wander a bit!

  • GreenLeaf

    And not to forget the neighboring India with its billion plus population too…

    The cell phone market in India is free from grip hold of carriers. People don’t buy handsets from carriers, rather from handset manufacturer outlet itself. Carriers’ contract model doesn’t work here. We enjoy the freedom of switching carriers every few months based on rate cuts due to intense competition among carriers.

    So Apple’s model of tying down customers to 2-3 years contract is going to take quite a beating in India. Heck, for all I know, Indians (on an average) change their carriers at least 3-4 times in a 2 year period.

    So increase the android’s sales projection by few more millions!!!

  • lordhong

    that’s great news. however, home brew hardware companies in China are using MTK integrated cellphone motherboard which has… everything! bluetooth, wifi, audio/video, A2DP, GPS. all you need to do is slap in ur own cellphone cover and sell it. the cost of those boards? around $20… and the OS comes with it. so not sure, lots of competitions of course.

  • I love the quote from Huges in that article, “The notion of having a high-quality operating system that is, for all practical purposes, free, is very attractive in Asia,” – yeah just like bootleg DVDs, music, and other normally protected property.

  • vly

    Im very much interested in the marketing strategy behind all this.

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