2011, a game-changing year

My extrapolations and thoughts. What do you think?

  • Nokia and Microsoft collaborate now, and Nokia drops Symbian and MeeGo. Alarms immediately go off about Nokia risking losing out on the high revenue smartphone market, with possibly only the low-end left to fight about. A market that will be flooded with low-cost smartphones based on Android, and also a market that Apple so far hasn’t cared about.
  • Bada, BlackBerry OS, MeeGo and WebOS are all likely to lose out to Android. Samsung doesn’t care, as they also use Android, and is quite successful at that. RIM risks losing out as they are already in an uphill struggle against Android and iOS. Intel will not find a new user of MeeGo. WebOS is good, but without a strong focused driver behind it.
  • Android will dominate even more, evolution speed will continue to be fierce (MUCH more fierce than for Windows Phone), and the price competition will start to cut profitability for all involved.
  • Apple will most likely be without Steve Jobs during 2011, and we all know what happened with Apple when Steve was away the last time. I don’t mean this in a sarcastic way. Steve Jobs is probably the biggest IT innovator in the 21st century, and he will be very hard to replace. I for instance don’t count Facebook, Twitter or Foursquare to be innovative. What they offer is pretty standard and was well established before their time. It’s all about simplicity, game aspects (especially Foursquare) and drawing in the most users for these services.
  • Apple and Linux will increasingly compete head-on with Microsoft for the office desktop. Apple iWork seems like a really good product suite, and OpenOffice and Linux bundles (not the least Ubuntu) get continuously better. Inertia will though make this transition slow, as IT departments don’t like change, even though there are long term cost-savings by dropping outdated software. Just look at how many companies still run very year old Microsoft software (Windows XP old Office versions). This in itself will be an ever increasing problem for Microsoft due to the support costs.
  • Facebook is increasingly taking ad revenue from Google and others, which in turn generates more ad revenue for Microsoft, as Facebook uses Microsoft’s ad network.
  • Yahoo!, MySpace and Gowalla will lose out even more to their more popular competitors.
  • Twitter will go full blast with ads, but will not necessarily succeed profitability-wise.
  • Foursquare and similar basic (and in my mind pretty useless) check-in services will evolve into something useful as well as generate revenue through located ads and offerings.  Augmented reality will be a standard feature of such services, rather than a separate offering.
  • New players want to get into the game, mainly from China, Taiwan and Korea. Japanese manufacturers still won’t stand a chance outside of Japan. Just see how fast HTC has changed from being an invisible ODM to a well-known brand with top-of-the-line Android phones. Huawei might become a Chinese phenomenon globally. They are already big on mobile infrastructure and wireless broadband.
  • The tablet market will evolve, but will of course remain relatively small compared to mobile phones. The biggest loser in this game is netbooks, that hardly anyone talks about anymore. A popular tablet setup will be the tablet itself and a protecting case with integrated mechanical keypad and a stand, hence almost like a netbook/laptop, but more handy.

Regarding Steve Jobs:

Time for Apple to speak up on future leadership – Analysis & Opinion –

Photos of Steve Jobs Looking ‘Gaunt’; Apple Stocks Drop – San Francisco News – The Snitch

Other:

Sony’s 4-Step Plan To Destroy Apple – Techi.com

Obama to Meet with Jobs, Zuckerberg, and Schmidt- Will the World Tilt on Thursday- – Techi.com

Linux News- Community- Is the Shade Coming Down on the Windows Era-