By Gadjo Cardenas Sevilla
Google's Android OS has finally overtaken Nokia's Symbian OS as the world's most popular smartphone platform in the fourth quarter, according to the research firm Canalys. 32.9m phones running various versions of Android were sold to retailers and mobile networks in the fourth quarter of 2010, compared with Symbian's total sales of 31m in the quarter, the report said.
Canalys also noted that Nokia managed to retain its lead as the single biggest smartphone vendor, with a 30.6% share of phones shipped. Here's where things get interesting. Symbian is only available in Nokia handsets, while Google's Android OS can be found in devices from Samsung, LG, Sony Ericsson, HTC, Motorola, Acer, Sharp, Toshiba among others.
The fourth quarter also saw the worldwide smart phone market hit new highs, with shipments of 101.2 million units representing year-on-year growth of 89%. The final quarter took shipments for the year to fractionally below 300 million units, with an annual growth rate of 80% over 2009. Smart phones are a growing and dominant segment that consumers don't appear to mind spending on and we've seen smartphone adoption grow exponentially in the past year.
Will Nokia continue on with Symbian? Or will it consider adopting Android for its future smartphones while maintaining Symbian for its feature phones? Nokia's current CEO, Canadian Stephen Elop, is the former head of Microsoft's business division. Is a tie-up with Windows Phone 7 and Nokia hardware even a possibility? These are all interesting questions going forward, the answers of which could change the landscape of the mobile industry.
IBM hits 100-year milestone
IBM is celebrating its 100th year anniversary this June and it is really hard to imagine where the personal computer and consumer electronics industry would be without Big Blue. While IBM has eased out of the consumer-end of the business, selling its computer assets to Lenovo in 2005, it still power a lot of the technology and systems that the world uses to operate businesses today.
Throughout its history, IBM has spearheaded innovation and taken substantial risks on emerging technologies that have proven to be the foundation of today's technology backbone.
With countless patents, inventions and innovations, IBM has touched all aspects of our lives and impacted progress on a major scale.
The personal computer and the notebook computer are just a few of the indispensable tools that IBM developed which took the industry by storm. Some of us remember the days when it was IBM vs. Apple in the PC world and when clone PC manufacturers replicated each iteration of the IBM PC.
IBM can even be credited for inventing the tablet computer way ahead of its time. The very first ThinkPad (left) was a pen-based tablet computer. The 2521 from 1992 was a slate computer designed for rugged use and also incorporated a 20 MB flash drive showing how innovative IBM was with the ThinkPad line.
Today, IBM's business is enterprise focused and ever present in big business but it is interesting to pause and celebrate their achievements through their website.