Apple's innovations start and end with user experience. It is Google, not Apple that has changed the face of the wireless industry.
It has only been a few weeks since the announcement of Android and the Open Handset Alliance and Google has already managed to shake up the wireless industry. Google has disrupted the industry to the degree where we have seen all major carriers shift the way they do business. We have also begun to witness the beginning of the end of the "walled garden". Some will be quicker than others to shed these walls, but mark my words, the carriers that keep their walls up will be the first to suffer (AOL anyone).
Verizon Reacts To The Disruption
Prior to the announcement of Android, Google and Verizon were unable to come to an agreement that would allow Google's search technology on Verizon's deck. With the announcement of Android, it seems that Google has taken a giant leap forward in terms of positioning themselves to be the default search engine for handsets of the future.
On November 27th key Verizon executives held a press conference (presentation can be seen here) announcing their latest strategy dubbed, "Any Apps, Any Device". While this announcement was short of innovative, it was certainly a bold move by Verizon and received applause from many industry wonks including the Chairman of the FCC Kevin Martin. Martin acknowledged both Verizon's and Google's moves toward open standard as, "significant". (ummm, yeah I would say so :) )
While the strategy looks great on paper, here are a few things you should consider before singing Verizon's praise:
Verizon will need to "test" any new device before it can join the network
- I can only guess what the "test" for the iPhone will be. I imagine it will be similiar to the SAT's
Only phones running on the CDMA standard will work
- iPhone, you are out of luck again
- No details have been disclosed on what users of "out of network phones" will have to pay to get on the Verizon network
It is hard to say at this point whether this is really an opening of the Verizon network, or the opening of Verizon PR efforts. Only time will tell.