The Mobile Device Industry is going through a change much the same way the PC manufactures experienced in their industry when Windows came on the scene in that industry.
Mobile device Manufactures are seeing their control of the industry dwindle down and profits will continue to become a fine line. Mobile device software (including operating system) manufactures are gaining influence and as device manufactures lose profits, the software manufacture gains.
The bright side for the device manufacture is that the key to profitability is the engineering of the phone interface and cutting-edge components included in the device will maintain profits and customer loyalty. Having a consultant that understands the current trends in both industries can give the respective manufacture a profitable edge.
The rise of the smartphone—a highly sophisticated and complex device—has forced some mobile phone makers to abandon the vertically integrated business model that has long dominated the handset industry.
The shift stems from the increasing reliance on operating systems (OS) and chipsets developed by third parties—for example, the Android OS in a Motorola phone. This reliance could give software and semiconductor companies the power to dictate mobile phone development in the same way that the so-called Wintel platform forged by Microsoft and Intel has shaped the personal computer (PC) sector. If that happens, the danger for device makers is that they will end up competing solely on price and profit margins, and the mobile phone industry will fall inexorably toward the razor-thin levels that prevail among PC manufacturers.
However, several major differences exist between the PC sector and the mobile phone sector, which suggest that the two industries may follow quite different paths. The mobile phone is a much more personal device than a PC, which means that hardware design and access to leading-edge components such as high-resolution screens, flash storage, cameras, and sensors are more important factors. The mobile phone is also used in many different scenarios.
Moreover, a handset has a small screen with limited real estate, making the role of the user interface more important than on a PC. Furthermore, operators play a major role in the distribution of mobile phones, often subsidizing retail prices.