Google and Apple Continue Competition for World (Wide Web) Dominance
It can be confidently stated that Microsoft ruled the computer industry from the late 1980s through the ‘90s. And it is equally clear that the baton has been passed, although to who is debatable.
On one hand you have Apple, who is the simultaneously making the premiere products in the field and the most widely-used as well. This in itself is a unique phenomenon; it would be like a car manufacturer designing and producing its top luxury model, and then making it affordable to the average person, without having the overabundance diminish its value or prestige. Lamborghinis wouldn’t seem as special if you saw your neighbor, mailman, and grocer drive around in them, yet the garbage man listening to his iPod while hanging to the back of the truck does not make it less desirable.
In competition with the computer giant is Google, the little search engine that could. Whereas Apple rose to prominence through user-friendly computers and software, Google took advantage of the fledgling internet, specifically the necessity to organize and find the billions of websites it would soon hold. Once it had control of the search engine realm, it was able to expand into Google Maps, Images, Video, YouTube, Blogger, Android OS and more. It has recently begun working with mobile device designers to make cell phones and tablets that specifically rely on its technology, much in the same way Apple has.
Which brings us to today. The current news is that Apples latest operating system, iOS 6 will not run Google Maps, instead using an Apple-developed version. Google Maps is widely considered the premier navigation program. There is no word as of yet if Google will design an upgraded app for iOS 6, but this seems like another way that the two are trying to gain complete control over their computer devises.
Both companies have been accused of monopolizing their fields; Apple through their strict regulations on who can sell their products and Google through determining which websites receive higher search ranking. There is little doubt that their acquisition of other companies displays the desire to expand and infiltrate all levels of consumer electronics.
What does the future hold? It really isn’t clear. You could not have convinced me of Microsoft’s collapse to near irrelevance in the 90’s. Nor could your persuade me five years ago that viable options to the iPhone and iPad would be produced by Google. Will a third party step in to overthrow these giants? Not if they have any say in it.