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Quora answer: “In your opinion, which mobile phone operating system (Firefox OS, Ubuntu, Sailfish, Tizen, etc.) will be the most popular OS?”


In your opinion, which mobile phone operating system (Firefox OS, Ubuntu, Sailfish, Tizen, etc.) will be the most popular OS?




I can already see you closing the browser tab right away, but please do stick around and read why.

TL;DR: The mobile phone market is dominated by Android and iOS, and will be for years to come. I don’t see any other OS gaining significant market share because of the reasons outlined in the rest of the answer.

Firstly, out of the operating systems you mentioned, Firefox OS and Ubuntu mobile have already been discontinued.

The major operating sytems dominating the cellphone operating system market are Android and iOS, which belong to Google and Apple respectively. There are 2 billion devices running Android out there. Android makes for 88% of all smartphone operating systems.

99.6% of all new phones being manufactured either ship with Android or iOS.

Many operating systems tried to capture the smartphone market. Microsoft tried with Windows Phone, Canonical with Ubuntu Mobile, and Mozilla with Firefox OS.

None of them succeeded, with 2 of the 3 above discontinued (Firefox OS and Ubuntu Mobile) and the third not being actively developed anymore (Windows Phone).

The simple reason behind this is that since Android and iOS are so popular, a) people don’t bother with another operating system and b) developers don’t bother making apps for other platforms. As an end user, you see that there are no apps supported on the new platform and that simply no one out there uses it, why must I?

As for the future, things look no different. As iPhone sales continue to climb, and as more and more phones continue to ship with Android installed by default, I don’t see any alternative OS taking off and being successful for many years to come.

EDIT: I forgot to mention features such as Google’s Android Auto and Apple’s Carplay which are modified versions of Android and iOS respectively designed to work on vehicles. With features such as navigation, wirelessly answering calls and texts, just to name a few. Chances are, any car you buy in 2017 will have Android Auto and Apple Carplay integrations. This is another reason why people won’t switch to another OS: they will be giving up on a lot of benefits in exchage for a few features which don’t affect them in any significant way.


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