There are several reasons why a daring company like Amazon, uninterested in having its fate determined by Apple’s total control of iOS and Google’s total lack of control over Android, would want to chart its own course in mobile. Dan Frommer at SplatF nicely outlined several reasons how this could work out well for Amazon.
—Different Paths: But as the iPad and tablet-wannabes mature, we’re learning just how different smartphones are than tablets. In these early days, the average tablet spends most of its time in the house. A huge percentage of them are Wi-Fi only, lacking a connection to mobile data networks through wireless carriers. And while apps are still important, Web surfing is more common on tabletsthan on smartphones.
Smartphones, on the other hand, need to be available and accessible everywhere. They’re mostly sold at retail by wireless carriers, who find ways to exert their own (and often competing) interests on the phones they sell. And applications are more important, which is why fragmentation is such a prevalent issue among Android developers confronted with an array of screen sizes and custom user interfaces across Android phones.
I'm a multi-disciplinary designer-strategist at HP. My passion is whole product design: the seamless integration of HW+SW+Web to deliver compelling experiences to users. I'm currently swimming upstream to bring Web 2.0-style community participation to HP's consumer printing business.