Samsung’s hardware and Google’s Android operating system have become the peanut butter and jelly of the tech world — they’re a great fit, and it looks like this popularity is starting to make Apple nervous.
Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing, told The Wall Street Journal today that the iPhone is better than any Android-powered phone in terms of both hardware and software, and that iPhone users are happier with their devices than Android users.
Schiller said that four times as many iPhone users switched from an Android device in the fourth quarter in 2012 than the other way around. He also mentioned a survey from ChangeWave, which stated that three-quarters of iPhone users say they’re “very satisfied” with their experience while only half of Android users say the same.
Schiller’s rant didn’t end there. He said that Android’s fragmentation was “plain and simple” and that Android-powered devices are the kinds of phones that are given as free replacements to feature phones.
Schiller added that the iOS experience on an iPhone is much more smooth than that of an Android phone because Apple is responsible for both the hardware (iPhone) and operating system (iOS).
Apple’s Phil Schiller
“When you take an Android device out of the box, you have to sign up to nine accounts with different vendors to get the experience iOS comes with,” Schiller said. “They don’t work seamlessly together.”
He then took a more hardware-directed hit, saying that no other Android smartphone screen compares to that of the iPhone 5’s.
“Given the iPhone 5 is so thin and light, the reason that people are making their devices bigger is to get up to the battery life the iPhone 5 offers,” Schiller said.
What’s interesting is that Schiller’s comments come on the eve of the Samsung Galaxy S IV’s release, which is Samsung’s flagship smartphone. The new device will feature a 5.0-inch 1080p display, a 1.9GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor (or a 2GHz quad-core Samsung Exynos 5450 processor for the international version), 2GB of RAM, 16/21/64GB storage options, a removable SD card slot for up to 64GB, a 13MP rear-facing camera with Orb technology for compressed panorama shots, a 2MP front-facing camera with eye scrolling technology, 4G LTE connectivity, Bluetooth 4.0, 3100 mAh battery and of course the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean operating system.
The Samsung Galaxy S III was a wildly-popular Android phone, and with the added specs of the Galaxy S IV, Apple is likely feeling nervous about its own popularity in the market.
Apple has hard a hard time keeping up the momentum of its products, and it shows in the company’s shares. Shares have fallen from $702.10 in September to $428.35 as of today. Also, Apple’s iPhone only represented about 19 percent of worldwide smartphone shipments in 2012 while all Android-powered smartphones accounted for about 70 percent.
Android will even beat Apple in the tablet sector this year, according to a new report from IDC. According to IDC, iPad shipments are expected to make up 46 percent of the tablet market for 2013, down from 51 percent in 2012. Android-powered tablets are expected to increase their market share to 49 percent in 2013, up from 42 percent in 2012.
Apple and Google are even branching out to another competitive realm in mobile electronics: wearable technology. Google is now offering its Google Glass headset (which is an augmented reality device) for $1,500 to early adopters and Apple is developing a smart watch, which could be released as early as this year.
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