A lot of people have wondered why Apple doesn’t license its iOS software to other manufacturers in the market in order to give its software service a supposed bump in the industry. Unlike other leading software such as Google’s Android and Microsoft’s Windows, iOS is exclusive to Apple products and it appears it will remain that way in the long term.
Apple has been relatively quiet about this but the issue but many analysts believe it has to do with the reputation Apple upholds for providing high-quality services and experiences through products that are reliable and suitable for its software platforms.
If you look at the number of devices that incorporate Windows, for example, you will find that it is in a variety of PCs ranging from low-end to high-end PCs, notebooks and smartphones. The issue with this, however, is that not every hardware device manufactured has specifications that can make the most of Windows programs such as Internet Explorer. One of the main issues people complain about Windows on certain devices is its performance, which for the most part works the poorest on models from Acer and Asus as there are too many low-priced and low-specification models that are put out that don’t support full Windows functions. Models from Sony and Toshiba etc. on the other hand are more than capable and users typically report of a more satisfied experience using Windows with their devices.
Microsoft has assumed letting its software develop out in the open as such would help it push its ecosystem further in the market but in fact it has done the opposite. It is not necessarily Windows fault that PC manufacturers are not providing goods that meet the software demands, but since Microsoft doesn’t require that there is no incentive, especially when makers are aiming to put out cheap solutions in order to capture market shares across the globe. Because of this, Microsoft is digging itself a hole that it created.
Consumers now believe that Windows-based PCs and overall Windows business is becoming less appealing and whatever way you look at it, Windows is to blame. Consumers are fed up with Windows PCs crashing and are either turning to Google Chrome or Apple iOS products as a result. Google products face the same issue as Windows but there are more high-end makers who push Google Chrome in their devices then there are ones who push Windows so the effect is less harsh.
And then there is Apple. Apple has stayed away from cross-licensing its software to other products that are not made with an Apple stamp of approval. For this reason, users across the board have an anonymous agreement that iOS is stable and works appropriately in Apple devices, aside from when Apple makes flaws in software updates as many reported with the launch of iOS 8. However, the experiences of the devices and their software coincide so there is no room for debate in terms of whether a certain smartphone or tablet will match it better.
Many consumers wish that Apple would still license its technology to other makers. Some believe that Apple could choose specific products that it approves, such as high-end smartphones from Samsung to have its iOS applications. Many Apple users do not necessarily dislike the hardware from other makers but instead prefer the software friendliness and accessibility over other competitors so it could be really cool thing. For Apple’s sake though this would be a highly unlikely possibility.
Now that Apple has larger-size smartphones the need to grasp cross-licensing opportunities for smartphones is much less. Before the arrival of iPhone 6 Apple was losing market share to vendors, many of which are in China, that release smartphones sized 4.5-6 inches. This hurt Apple throughout 2013 into 2014 until it released its new smartphone in the fourth quarter of 2014 but the company has since bounced back and is stronger than ever.
Apple needs to continue considering its hardware aspect to push forth its software and vice versa, but the demand for iOS in other devices means it is hardware preference over another maker either due to cost or specifications. Therefore, Apple should keep a concise yet diversified line of products with up-to-date specs in order to give it a continuing lead in the market.