10 Reasons Why Android Is Making Google the Next Apple

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2010-06-06

10 Reasons Why Android Is Making Google the Next Apple

In the mobile business, Google and Apple get all the attention. And although RIM is easily besting both companies to this point, it's becoming clear that going forward, only the iPhone and Android-based devices will lead the way.

That's not necessarily a bad thing. Both companies have a strong desire to be the best in the market. They also seem to understand what both consumers and enterprise customers are looking for in their products. In other words, Apple and Google are becoming awfully similar.

But that's by design. Thanks to Android, Google is becoming the next Apple in the mobile world. The company has used Android to show the world that it can do more than offer a search service and deliver advertising to Web companies. It has shown that if it wants to branch out into the consumer market and take on a juggernaut like Apple (or Microsoft, for that matter), it has the ability and vision to do so.

It's commendable. But it also speaks to what Google has become. Gone are the days when the company was content to be the big name online. Today, Google wants to be bigger than Apple and Microsoft-combined.

And it's trying to achieve that by becoming the next Apple. This is how:

1. It has the feature set

Google's work in the mobile business should be commended. Although it trailed Apple in touch capability, it quickly caught up. And now, as the company prepares to release Android 2.2 to the masses, Google and its partners are selling more Android phones than Apple has sold iPhones. Of course, it should be noted that Android OS is more popular today because it's available on many more phones. But Google's success should not be underestimated. By delivering a high-quality operating system, it followed Apple's lead. And now, it has established itself as the company that can offer the software that people want. Does that sound familiar?

2. Google is a household name

If nothing else, Google has become a household name. And it has done so by offering one of the best services in every single market that it competes in. That said, Google was arguably a household name before it released Android. But now that Android is out and more consumers are using it, the search giant is becoming known for more than just its online efforts. The same thing can be said for Apple. The company was originally a computer maker, but thanks to the iPod, iPhone and now the iPad, it's more than that. And that has only helped it become an even more well-known and respected company in the industry.

3. Innovation is here

Apple made a name for itself over the past 10 years by being the most innovative company in the industry. While Microsoft, Yahoo and just about every other prominent company were toiling away with the same boring products and services that they had at the beginning of the century, Apple was coming up with something new and fresh that appealed to consumers. Google is following that path. The company has stopped trying to just offer iterative updates to its services and products. It's now taking cues from Apple's innovation strategy. Not only has that helped it attract more consumers, but it has also helped it get closer to achieving Apple-like respect in the marketplace.

4. Consumers are taking notice

If Apple is good at anything, it's being able to appeal to consumers. Google is quickly achieving that same feat. The company is now able to appeal to consumers and finally understand what they want. When Android first launched, Google was a little lost. The company didn't seem to adequately understand the desire of consumers. But it has caught its stride. Not only is Android more user-friendly, many of its Web services have been improved to make them even more appealing to the average person. It seems Apple's influence has helped it with that.

Google Plays All the Right Cards 

5. The rabid fan base is growing

The one thing that makes Apple the standout that it is today is its rabid fan base. Often called "fanboys," the company's supporters are unlike any other group in the industry. They support Apple to the bitter end and believe Steve Jobs is always right. Google didn't have that following a few years ago. But now that Android is gaining popularity and its Web services are doing so well, it's starting to attract that fan base. In fact, some might say that Google's fans are just as rabid and loyal as Apple's. So far, though, Google's fans are easily outnumbered by Apple's. But it might only be a matter of time before that changes.

6. Secrecy is starting to take hold

Since Android launched, Google has been a far more secretive company than it was in the past. Previously, Google was a filled with holes. Rather than keep information close to the vest, the company would simply unveil a new service, slap a "beta" tag on it and move along. But those days are gone. Now, Google has done a better job of keeping its upcoming updates and services confidential. Even Google Buzz was a surprise to many when the company first announced it. It seems that Google has learned a thing or two from Steve Jobs.

7. There's a swagger

If Apple has anything, it's a swagger. The company is confident in what it does, it believes in the products it offers, and it wants everyone to know it. To some, that comes off as annoying and unbecoming. But for the rest of the market, it's viewed as the key to what makes Apple such a special company. Recently, Google started developing its own swagger. Rather than simply offer services that people like to use, it has been more outspoken about what it believes. It has even gone toe-to-toe with Apple over the issues it sees with the company. Google is more confident than ever.

8. The desire to be better

As successful as Apple has been, the company is always striving to do better. For Steve Jobs, being one of the best companies in a market isn't good enough. The Apple CEO wants the world to see that Apple products are simply better than anything else out there. With the announcement of Android 2.2 and several other updates to its services, Google is making it clear that it wants to achieve that same level of proficiency. Google wants to be better than it is today. It wants to dominate any market it competes in.

9. It's more than Android

It's easy to look at Android and think that Google is trying to be another Apple. But it goes beyond Android. Google has seemingly evaluated what makes Apple such a unique and successful company in the market and has decided to follow its lead. And in the process, it has transformed its business and started making people view the search giant in a very different way. Whether it's search, advertising, Android or anything else that Google has planned, the company is trying to make the case that it can best all competitors. It's a very Apple-esque mentality.

10. It's what Google wants

Google is good at dominating markets, and it has its own market identity. But it's also good at being another Apple. And it's just the way the company likes it. Google sees that Apple's ability to captivate audiences and perform extremely well is tied to its corporate culture. And although Google might not want to copy everything that Apple does, the company does want to enjoy the kind of excitement and respect Apple's products get. That's precisely why the company is doing what it can to be more like Apple. And it's also why, going forward, it will probably achieve that goal.

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