Verizon: Eh for OHA
Malady's use of the future tense is salient; device manufacturers and operators have already created 18 LiMo devices, while Android has just a few prototypes floating around from chip makers such as Texas Instruments and ARM. "The continued momentum being demonstrated by LiMo is in sharp contrast to the progress being made by Google's Open Handset Alliance that, other than a couple of early prototype demos at this year's Mobile World Congress, has yet to show further convincing progress," wrote Ovum Research analyst Adam Leach in a research note May 14.Indeed, by getting fully behind and invested in LiMo, it is clear that if push comes to shove, Verizon is going to choose LiMo over Android in a heartbeat. Moreover, against the backdrop of the war of accusations the companies are waging against each other through the Federal Communications Commission, Malady's comments about considering Android support rang hollow. Google May 2 filed a petition to the FCC asking the agency to clarify open access rules for wireless communications, citing what it claimed was Verizon's loose interpretation of the rules. Verizon said Google's claims have no merit and pledged to file a counter position. With that cross stream of fear, uncertainty and doubt, it was clear that the dinged feelings in the wake of Google's admitted manipulation of the 700MHz wireless auction in January were not resolved. Moreover, despite Gillis' diplomatic position, Verizon's wholehearted endorsement of LiMo could ratchet up the tension between the Google-forged OHA, which is similarly pushing the creation of Linux-based handsets, albeit running Google's Android brand of mobile OS. Malady said LiMo and OHA could both succeed in the market, competing with each other. He also said he thought the two could work together. However, historically such factions tend to fragment the industry, not come together.
If Android gets too powerful, Verizon may see it as a threat to LiMo and choose not to offer it. Offering LiMo and Android handsets together could cancel them out, defeating the purpose of Verizon's vigorous LiMo support.