Google on Windows Phone 7: no need for another platform

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Andy Rubin is Android's co-founder and now vice president of engineering at Google responsible for the open-source mobile operating system. Lowell McAdam is the Chief Executive Officer of Verizon. Rubin and McADam were recently asked what they thought of Windows Phone 7, among other things (you can read the two interviews over at PCMag and CNET, respectively), and neither of their answers was pretty.

"I think the screen shots I've seen are interesting, but look, the world doesn't need another platform," Rubin said. "Android is free and open; I think the only reason you create another platform is for political reasons. Why doesn't the whole world run with [Android]? They don't like the people who developed, or 'not invented here,' but [Android] is a successful, complete, vertically integrated free platform. I encourage everybody to use it, but I'm also not under the impression that everybody will use it, which is a good thing, because competition is good for the consumer and if somebody has an idea for a feature or a piece of functionality in their platform and Android doesn't do it, great. I think it's good to have the benefit of choice, but in the end I don't think the world needs another platform."

The problem with Rubin's comment is simple: Microsoft was in mobile first. Windows Phone will be replacing Windows Mobile, thus it's not "another platform." When Android entered the market, it was "another platform," which Rubin has conveniently forgotten. Still, that hasn't stopped Android from taking the market by storm.

"I can't really say which phones we'll offer yet," McAdam said when asked about whether Windows phones would arrive on Verizon's 4G network. "We like our relationship with Microsoft. But clearly in the U.S. there are three major mobile operating systems: RIM, Google, and Apple." The interviewer then asked to verify that McAdam did not view Microsoft as a major player in mobile and he confirmed: "No not at the moment. Microsoft is not at the forefront of our mind."

McAdam's comments aren't too surprising given that Microsoft has made the decision to launch Windows Phone as GSM-only. CDMA support won't come until 2011.

Windows Phone 7 is officially launching in London and NYC tomorrow. We'll have to wait a few quarters to see whether Google's and Verizon's statements change.


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