In the mobile phone realm, there are too many operating systems. That's what Vodafone CEO Arun Sarin seems to think, anyway.
bMighty.com blogger Paul Korzeniowski notes that although Sarin's call for mobile operating system consolidation is self serving, he does have a point.
Apple and Google are just two examples of vendors that are jumping into a rapidly growing mobile market -- Apple with its iPhone and the Mac OS-based operating system, and Google with the Android platform, which is based on Linux. Despite the fact that they are large companies, Korzeniowski says, they are still in relatively early stages of establishing a market presence.
Howver, if vendors would reduce the number of mobile operating systems from the current 30-40 to as few as five, small businesses would most likely be very grateful, Korzeniowski says. While the proliferation of operating systems increases competition in the space, it also creates headaches for everyone involved. For example:
Employees have become comfortable with mixing and matching software on their PCs and are beginning to expect the same level of interoperability with their mobile devices. However, these devices fall short of delivering such functionality, so in many cases, users are not able to download content unless it has been especially designed for the smaller devices. To make content mobile friendly requires significant upfront and ongoing IT investments.
As a result, he says, most small businesses are willing to wait it out, even if it takes a few more years.