My Photo

Ordering Information

Tomi on Twitter is @tomiahonen

  • Follow Tomi on Twitter as @tomiahonen
    Follow Tomi's Twitterfloods on all matters mobile, tech and media. Tomi has over 8,000 followers and was rated by Forbes as the most influential writer on mobile related topics

Book Tomi T Ahonen to Speak at Your Event

  • Contact Tomi T Ahonen for Speaking and Consulting Events
    Please write email to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com and indicate "Speaking Event" or "Consulting Work" or "Expert Witness" or whatever type of work you would like to offer. Tomi works regularly on all continents

Tomi on Video including his TED Talk

  • Tomi on Video including his TED Talk
    See Tomi on video from several recent keynote presentations and interviews, including his TED Talk in Hong Kong about Augmented Reality as the 8th Mass Media


Blog powered by Typepad

« China Economy Passes USA in Size This Year says The Economist - What would Kondratieff think of this within the natural succession pattern of global hegemony ie Long Wave Cycle | Main | Some of the Things I Learned At Mobile West Africa 2014 in Lagos Nigeria »

June 04, 2014




You continue to persistently ignore the one big difference: Unlike Nokia's N9 which was released at a time when it still would have mattered, Blackberry was plain and simply too late. Way too late! Android had already taken over all the market it could when BB10 came out, except for a small group of holdouts still sticking to BB7. For those BB10 was no different than Android, i.e. they resisted to switch and if they had to switch they just shopped elsewhere (since BB10 was not the 'Blackberry experience' they wanted.

It's really getting tiresome how you try to 'explain' Nokia's 2011 outlook with the situation of the market as it developed only after Nokia self-destructed. In 2011 they still mattered - and had they released a competetive product they might have been able to do the same as Apple, namely to sustain their own ecosystem. After all they were starting from a 30% market share, not from a measly 3% as Blackberry did when they released BB10.
If you want to do this analysis right you have to consider Android vintage 2010, which was a mediocre OS that filled a niche nobody served - not the polished system it has become since then. Back then Android was still vulnerable and a killer OS could have seriously hit it. Do the same today and it'll just laugh at you.


Hey, I trust your numbers and play nice, OK?



"The growth rate of Android was like nothing ever seen"

Yes, it was. But the reason for this was solely that it had nothing to compete with. Of course it gobbled up all the vacuum in the market.

But your claim that Nokia wouldn't have had a chance with Meego in 2011 is just laughable. At this point people were buying Android due to lack of options mostly. What I find questionable is how you point at Blackberry to say that Nokia would have fared the same.

As I said, BB10 was just too late. When it finally was released it had nothing to distinguish itself anymore.

As for Microsoft having a chance: define 'chance'. Yes, they may have a chance to sustain a measly 3-4% market share - but at what cost? WP is a zombie, it only lives on because Microsoft refuses to let it run its course. It still drains its lifeforce from the Nokia brand which won't be available forever. The Q1 numbers have been horrendous, if this trend continues some of Microsoft's worst nightmares may come true.
Let's be clear: They've tried for almost four years now to push their misbegotten system into the phone market, all this time has clearly shown that the market doesn't want and doesn't need WP. So what would make anyone even THINK that some future magic may turn the tides? Hell, not even the Nokia brand could do it!

"Meego was still born."

No, it clearly wasn't. It was born with promising signs, just being left lying there to starve.

Regarding Tizen, I don't think Samsung is as stupid as Microsoft, wasting endless amounts of money on an endless failure just for the slim hope that in the far future it may show some glimmer of success.
Samsung has realized that they don't stand a chance with Tizen. The best they could do is a repeat of WP, namely to sacrifice a good brand reputation for a few measly percent of the market. And that will show itself in how the system is placed in the market. What they did was nothing more than a token gesture but no serious attempt to make a noticable impact.


Of course "Msft has a chance" So does my neighbor. He "has a chance"! My dog "has a chance"! My cat "has a chance"! My oak tree "has a chance". My (...fill in the blank...) "has a chance".. ...LoL!!! This is just too funny! ...How many YEARS and YEARS are the astrturfers going to do this? Microsoft must pay these astroturfers a delusion bonus :-) ....Everyone has noticed by now these statements are basically astroturfing embedded in a quasi-serious context attempting to distort the interpretation of Tomi's blog.


I don't think Microsoft values Tomi's blog that high they would spend money on it.


"For Samsung to establish Tizen they'd have to put the same or more amount of resources that Msft is."

I disagree, MS has a toxic reputation for bloated, unstable, virus-hosting crapware. Tizen doesn't have any such baggage.

I think quite a few contributors here are being myopic with regards to Tizen, it's not a token effort or a bargaining chip against Google, it is Samsung's chosen OS for the 'Internet of Things'.

I think some of you are really not getting what Tizen is and what it's about, here's a little insight:

Samsung using Tizen on some of its smartphones will be just one Tizen implementation amongst many within their product range.

Furthermore, I think Huawei will also release Tizen devices.


"Tizen is supposed to RULE on phones."

It probably does, developers who've had preview hardware have stated Tizen does indeed comfortably outperform Android.

That's hardly the point though, as 'ecosystems' become less and less relevant and the IoT and HTML5 expand their footprint into every device nobody will give a monkey's wotnot what OS a device is using, it will all be about the browser.

Just one simple example: Samsung's new Tizen TVs will have a web server built in that will serve connections on your local wifi network, any device on the network that can run a browser can be used as a remote control for the TV just by navigating to the correct url. A much better solution than a native remote control app that only works on a certain platform and only for a certain TV.

Carriers, manufacturers (except Apple) and retailers all have a vested interest in migrating from locked down 'ecosystems' to the web and, even if many don't get it yet, consumers do too.



The browser making the ecosystems irrelevant is not going to happen this year, next year on in 2016. By irrelevant I mean enabling the app makers to have more revenue from selling the apps than they are now making from app stores. The browsers are there not yet. And how do we know they are not there yet? Because I can't buy the best games with my Safari browser.



You people always look for the peanuts instead of the big picture of the future.

Oh, btw, the biggest joke in this regard are the persistent iWatch rumors. Has Apple really become this small minded or is this just the lack of imagination of the tech journalists?

I doubt Samsung is suffering from such a case of tunnel vision. It's clear that they won't conquer the current smartphone market with Tizen - they don't even have to because they already own the largest chunk. Hell, they don't even try. If they somehow manage to make Tizen the default platform for the 'Internet of Things' - and I think this is what Samsung is really after - it'll be magnitudes bigger than those measly app ecosystems that exist today (and which most smartphone users mostly ignore anyway.)

It's quite clear that they plan for the long term and to be blunt - I really don't see much of today's awfully locked down 'ecosystems' (why do people use this euphemism for those poison ponds anyway?) there.


@WonTheLottery & Tester:

I think you are probably correct that Samsung is looking for the 'next big thing' here.

So yes, when purely looking at smartphones none of it makes sense. Of course, anyone looking at smartphones as the only relevant market is making a big mistake anyway. And Samsung does not make such mistakes.

I find it funny how some people argue that 'today you can't...' or that 'it'll take time before this becomes viable' and conclude that sticking to today's stuff is the most logical thing to do. Without vision there's no improvement. And sorry, smartphones have become a rather vision-less field of business over the recent years. Yes, we get some occasional new feature, yes, the phones get faster but let's be honest: If your needs don't go beyond making phone calls, sending SMS, surfing the internet or occasionally installing some utility app, a 4-year old Android phone isn't really any worse than a current model. There really hasn't been much change since then, aside from refinement.

So why even try to bring the next revolution to smartphones? There won't be any! It's just like the PC market in the early 2000's. Things had settled down, there hasn't been any revolutionary new developments and all that happened was optimization of hardware so that things could get faster, smaller and cheaper - at a decreasing pace. Replacement cycles have extended from 2 years to 5+ years, even for many power users. Smartphones will eventually go the same route - if it wasn't for the business models of some carriers to drive faster replacement cycles, I think we'd already be there.

So, what does that mean for Tizen? Actually two things:

1. Make sure it becomes big for the Things To Come, not the Things That Are.
2. Also make sure that it remains a viable system for smartphones, in case the industry shifts away from system specific apps. It wouldn't stand a chance before that anyway but be prepared for the time when it doesn't matter anymore whether the phone runs on iOS, Android or what else.

That'd at least explain why Samsung is releasing a Tizen phone, despite a very slim chance of success.


LOL about the iWatch remark. This is something I had been scratching my head about myself for some time. What's so revolutionary about a smartwatch? I really can't see this serving any pressing need, unlike the iPhone which finally rendered all those shitty first and second generation mobile phones obsolete which persistently failed to provide a decent user experience. Everyone I know uses a mobile phone - even my 78 year old mother and many of the 80+ years old people she knows, the vast majority has shifted to smartphones already. On the other hand I don't know that many people who still wear a wristwatch - and most who do go for smaller, less bulky things, which is the complete opposite of what a smartwatch had to be in order to be useful. So it'd be a redundant gadget for many.

I really fail to see why this has to be the next big thing. It's truly a profound lack of imagination by the tech journalists, if you ask me. Of course the one thing I can't quantify is the sheep-factor of Apple's users which might even help turn a useless product into a financial success - but I certainly can't see the existing smartwatches being any kind of viable business.


Don't forget that Samsung also had Bada. Bada had higher marketshare than WP before Samsung decided to discontinue it. So Samsung is certainly able to beat Microsoft if they want to.

The problem with BB10 is the same as what Tomi criticized about Tizen: Not only did it come very late, but RIM/BB put it only in premium devices and failed to reach sub-$100 price point. This made it uninteresting for BB7 users, which went to Android instead. BB10 thus stayed irrelevant for the mass market.



I didn't only that you can't today. You can't in 2015 or 2016 either. That makes all the difference. For the developers this means that most apps starting development today will be targeted for Android and iOS because that's going to be the biggest app market for several years. This would be different if the browser based app market would bring more revenue from app sales already in 2015, but this is not happening.

Trying to change that with Tizen is naturally something worth trying to do, but for the developers it's not going to matter for a while. The same applies to the web based apps. It's very likely that the ecosystem apps will go away and be replaced with web apps, but so what? How does that matter in 2014 or 2015? Most of the smartphone web app revenues come from ads and while the revenues from actual sales isn't even 10% of what it's from traditional apps, the market is not going to change that much.

Today it's impossible to say if that change will take place in 5 or 10 years and for the developers it means that sticking with the current stuff really is the most logical thing to do. Not for everyone but for most of the developers.



We were talking about Samsung and the industry, not the developers of today. For Samsung that part is completely irrelevant for their long term planning.

Samsung clearly isn't after revolutionizing the app market - that will never work - what they are after is to ensure their continued success if paradigms change.



For Samsung to succeed in creating a viable platform for replacing Android and iOS they need to attract the developers. Without that they are effectively offering a feature phone. That's not an alternative for smartphones. At least not more than Asha or WP devices.

It's actually much easier for Android manufactures to continue the success with browser centric Android phones if the paradigms change that way. In both cases the hardware still needs to support the same functionality. The difference comes from the software and as long as the new browser based paradigm is a software based subset of the current one there is really no need to create a new product having only this subset. The hardware is not really any cheaper if the devices can support the same functionality.


Behold this smallmindedness...

What is it with you people to focus on the peanuts? Remember: Samsung doesn't just do smartphones - they have entirely different things in view.
In the big scheme of things smartphones are a phase - there's far bigger things to conquer. (see 'Internet of Things') Samsung wants to conquer these bigger things.

And in that bigger picture, the current apps are the crumbs left by the people eating the peanuts. In other words: It really doesn't matter.

But what Samsung does need in this bigger picture is an operating system that isn't hampered by outside forces.


"Microsoft is a juggernaut with WP in comparison to Samsung with Tizen."
I think the expression you're looking for is 'train wreck'.

It's predicted the biggest new market for first time smartphone buyers over the next year will be India. Mozilla have announced they are just about to launch a £15 Firefox OS device in India and Indonesia so your dissing of Firefox OS may also yet prove rather premature.

Maybe it's time wristwatches became useful again, this video demonstrates a Tizen wristwatch acting as a plipper for locking/unlocking a car. With some refinement I see a wristwatch being good in uses such as these.
It could sense the owner departing/approaching and lock/unlock the car accordingly, it could sense the proximity of the drivers hand to the steering wheel and disable the immobiliser, etc...

It's rumoured Samsung will soon release a smartphone that unfolds to become a tablet, will it run Android or Tizen? My guess is they'll reserve Android for the passé stuff.

With regards to apps, Gartner have predicted by 2017 most 'app interactions' will be via wearables.

Good news for us in the UK, it looks like we'll be able to get an unlocked Samsung Z:

One more thing, check out the new Tizen washing machine:

Earendil Star

Baseless as usual

"Meego never was and never will be [...] as a mobile platform"
Actually it was with the N9, the N950 and now Samsung.

"Nokia did not have the resources to make a go of a third platform"
BS. Nokia had them, at least before the Elop Flop took the helm. After that all efforts were put on resuscitating the WP (P)OS (clearly a strategic win decision for Nokia... NOT). As it should be known and recognized by now (WP at 2% market share), it is not humanely possible to revive WP even if one had unlimited resources (almost like MS).

"Samsung has picked up Meego"
So, first "Meego" never will be, now it is admitted that Samsung has picked it up. All this contradiction in just two lines? By the way, Nokia planned to introduce Meego in 2010, when all was still possible. It still controlled large part of the market. A platform transition strategy was in place. Samsung is starting from scratch in 2014... but again, there is the internet of things, there is diversification (i.e. not relying on one platform only as sound risk management would suggest, etc.).

Let's not try to rewrite history like in Orwell's 1984.
Adopting WP *exclusively* was the worst possible choice for Nokia, and this is now clear looking at the fate Nokia suffered. Buying Nokia's board was a good attempt by MS, but the Symbian to WP transition strategy was entrusted by a bald moron to a Canadian moron and 2% is what MS now has...
In the end, MS probably would have fared better if they had continued with their previous OEM strategy... rather than alienating OEMs. Yes, 2% after bringing Nokia down the sinkhole really sucks.



"Microsoft is a juggernaut with WP in comparison to Samsung with Tizen."

If you believe that...

The big difference between both is that Samsung can very comfortably and quietly plan and execute its old future, while Microsoft is being pushed a wall and forced to stick it out with a product that has comprehensively failed in the market like few others.

"Time to face the reality - Meego never was and never will be. Not as a mobile phone platform. Nokia did not have the resources to make a go of a third platform."

Time to face the bullshit, rather. Nokia in 2010 was bigger than Samsung, bigger than Apple. Of course they had the resources to make it work - with a sane management. But they preferred to listen to idiots, saying the same nonsense as you, namely that as a non-US company they can't possibly succeed and put a moron at their helm.

Say whatever you want, but in no way would Nokia have crumbled to nothingness. Any other option would have been better than doing Windows Phone - even sticking to Symbian!


Oops, of course I mean Samsung's 'own future', not 'old future'.


microsoft WP is a "juggernaut" ...what a totally delusional and dishonest statement. I guess you can clearly identify the microsoft astroturfers now with there repeated non-sense trying to make it appear as if WP is relevant when they post any comments (they also like to tag team too ...we haven't heard from the others for awhile). Their goal is to work in some delusional "microsoft will succeed eventually" perspective ....just too too funny! definitely helps everyone understand how accurate and realistic any other nonsense they say might be.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Available for Consulting and Speakerships

  • Available for Consulting & Speaking
    Tomi Ahonen is a bestselling author whose twelve books on mobile have already been referenced in over 100 books by his peers. Rated the most influential expert in mobile by Forbes in December 2011, Tomi speaks regularly at conferences doing about 20 public speakerships annually. With over 250 public speaking engagements, Tomi been seen by a cumulative audience of over 100,000 people on all six inhabited continents. The former Nokia executive has run a consulting practise on digital convergence, interactive media, engagement marketing, high tech and next generation mobile. Tomi is currently based out of Helsinki but supports Fortune 500 sized companies across the globe. His reference client list includes Axiata, Bank of America, BBC, BNP Paribas, China Mobile, Emap, Ericsson, Google, Hewlett-Packard, HSBC, IBM, Intel, LG, MTS, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, Ogilvy, Orange, RIM, Sanomamedia, Telenor, TeliaSonera, Three, Tigo, Vodafone, etc. To see his full bio and his books, visit Tomi Ahonen lectures at Oxford University's short courses on next generation mobile and digital convergence. Follow him on Twitter as @tomiahonen. Tomi also has a Facebook and Linked In page under his own name. He is available for consulting, speaking engagements and as expert witness, please write to tomi (at) tomiahonen (dot) com

Tomi's eBooks on Mobile Pearls

  • Pearls Vol 1: Mobile Advertising
    Tomi's first eBook is 171 pages with 50 case studies of real cases of mobile advertising and marketing in 19 countries on four continents. See this link for the only place where you can order the eBook for download

Tomi Ahonen Almanac 2009

  • Tomi Ahonen Almanac 2009
    A comprehensive statistical review of the total mobile industry, in 171 pages, has 70 tables and charts, and fits on your smartphone to carry in your pocket every day.

Alan's Third Book: No Straight Lines

Tomi's Fave Twitterati