Now Is the Time to Start Planning for the Post-Android World

We need a free software mobile operating system. Is it eelo?

Remember Windows? It was an operating system that was quite popular
in the old days of computing. However, its global market share has
been in decline for some time, and last
, the Age of Windows ended, and the Age of Android began.

Android—and thus Linux—is now everywhere. We take it for granted
that Android is used on more than two billion
, which come in just about every form factor—smartphones,
tablets, wearables, Internet of Things, in-car systems and so on. Now,
in the Open Source world, we just assume that Android always
will hold around 90% of the smartphone sector, whatever the brand name
on the device, and that we always will live in an Android world.

Except—we won’t. Just as Windows took over from DOS, and
Android took over from Windows, something will take over from
Android. Some might say “yes, but not
“. While Android goes from strength to strength, and Apple
is content to
make huge profits
from its smaller, tightly controlled market,
there’s no reason for Android to lose its dominance. After all,
there are no obvious challengers and no obvious need for something

However, what if the key event in the decline and fall of Android has
already taken place, but was something quite different from what
we were expecting? Perhaps it won’t be a frontal attack by another
platform, but more of a subtle fracture deep within the Android
ecosystem, caused by some external shock. Something
like this
, perhaps:

Today, the Commission has decided to fine Google 4.34
billion euros for breaching EU antitrust rules. Google has engaged
in illegal practices to cement its dominant market position in
internet search. It must put an effective end to this conduct within
90 days or face penalty payments.

What’s striking is not so much the monetary aspect, impressive
though that is, but the following:
“our decision stops Google from controlling which search
and browser apps manufacturers can pre-install on Android devices,
or which Android operating system they can adopt.”

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