2012 meet 2002… I think you’ll like each other

imageI read today that Facebook is criticising Apple and Google for failing to adopt HTML 5 quickly enough on iOS and Android. I guess Apple and Google know which side their bread is buttered. They both know that the key to having a successful platform is having great apps.

Enabling developers to target all mobile OSs with a single code base is great for developers but terrible for platform owners. First off you lose any competitive advantage from having the best apps, and even more importantly in the mobile world, Apple and Google forfeit the 30% tax they charge on App Store / Google Play sales.

Of course we have been here before. Back around 2002 Microsoft was using anti-competitive practices to kill off competing browsers with the aim of ensuring all the best apps remained only on the Windows platform. Ultimately that didn’t work of course. The regulators got involved and developers built for the browser and W3C standards anyway.

Ultimately the same will happen on the mobile platforms I’m sure. Interesting now though is that the tables have been turned. Microsoft is the minnow with lots to gain by disrupting the established players. It’ll be fun watching this one play out.


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