In the world of smartphones and web search, there are really only two names that mean anything: Apple and Google. Or, iPhone and Android. These two mega-corporations are innovators. They set the standards, and everyone else can try (in vain) to keep up. Among them, a war is constantly being waged for who can really dominate all-things-tech and information.
Currently, each company is clearly winning in a different area. Google has Internet search and advertising on lock. Apple has smartphones and mobile devices in general. These victories, however, aren’t enough. Apple and Google both want to win it all. In the intense battle of Apple vs. Google, who will come out on top? Will there ever, or at least anytime soon, be one victor?
Apple’s Recent Attacks Against Google
Years ago, Apple and Google had a great relationship that was mutually beneficial. They helped each other (and teamed up against Microsoft), and everyone was happy. Those days are over, and the most recent low-blow on Apple’s part has been the decision to drop Google Maps from its devices entirely. Apple has designed its own mapping system and app, the cleverly-titled “Maps.”
If that weren’t enough, Apple also decided to drop Google’s YouTube app as a default on its devices’ smart screens, something that had been a fixture since the debut of the original iPhone. This was purely personal, because so far Apple has announced no plans for replacing it.
Apple on the Offensive
Right now Apple seems to be the aggressor, actively trying to push Google out of the top spot in advertising and search. Apple’s iAd app for mobile advertising hopes to steal a big chuck of Google’s AdWords popularity. In addition, Apple’s voice assistant Siri may be one of Apple’s biggest weapons. While it’s still improving and currently still in its beta phase, Siri can divert the queries of iPhone users so that Google never enters into the mix. Google’s defensive attempt at a rival voice assistant, Majel, has no current release date, although Google is concentrating a lot more effort on it now.
Mobile: The Final Battle?
If Apple can successfully overpower Google in mobile advertising, it will represent a significant loss for Google. Both companies know how important mobile search is; during the Olympics, for example, 50 percent of searches were done from a mobile device, and 80 percent of mobile searches start with apps rather than an Internet browser. However, there is skepticism that mobile advertising will ever be nearly as profitable as web advertising.
Google has begun to stake its territory in mobile payments, with Google Wallet. It’s acquisition of Zagat and Frommers further demonstrate its intention of contending for local search and local transaction real estate. Apple’s small foray into local commerce, Passbook, isn’t yet any real competition, but the battle for mobile transaction has only just begun.
A Battle ‘til the Bitter End
The war between Apple and Google will only continue to be waged, and it’s sure to continue to intensify as well. Right now the competition is close. Some will tell you that Apple is taking over, while others maintain that it will take a lot more for either company to surpass the other. In many cases, it comes down to brand loyalty. Can the iPhone improve enough to win over Android lovers, or vice versa? One day the battle will come to a head, because such an intense war can’t go on forever. It may or may not be soon, but it will happen. Who’s side are you on?
This article on the future of technology and digital devices was prepared by Travis Lee in cooperation with SEOMap.