By Cristina Musngi Smartphones are one of the most popular forms of communication these days. These smart gadgets have been kicking around for quite some time already and its feature set has greatly expanded from the simple set of contacts list, calendar, planner, photo capture, video recording to navigation, Internet browsing, email handling, and even running productivity and entertainment applications. No surprise why most people rely on smartphones because of the many advantages and benefit they offer. The many advantages of smartphones, not to mention all are the following:
? Staying in touch has never been this easy. Smartphones offer a complete Internet experience. The Internet functionality that is experienced in a personal computer is now available on a handheld device. With the proper smartphone, anyone can send emails with attached files, browse the Internet, watch video on YouTube, Chat messaging. Smartphone users can check movie or flight schedules. Some smartphone provide GPS functionality that tells you exactly where you are and find your destination anytime, anywhere.
? Multimedia at your fingertips. Multimedia at your Fingertips. When stuck in a traffic jam, bored in your class or meeting, waiting for a flight, or in an awkward situation requiring an instant escape, your most loved media is now at your fingertips. Smartphones allow the users to save and download music, movies, video shows and even read with an eBook reader.
? Applications or ?apps? that you need. Apps allow the user to customize or personalize phones. Examples of these are Games, Utilities, Editors, and Interactive References. These are downloaded from online stores — some are free, some need to be purchased.
? Productivity on the go. Prime reason smartphones is now widely used in business. Smartphones offer applications which emancipate users to be productive anywhere they go. To mention a few are, word processors, spreadsheet programs, presentation software, personal organizers, calendar, note-taking apps and voice recorders for business meetings.Smartphones today are soldering more features of a personal computer than ordinary cellular phones — one reason why the biggest names in the industry are moving swiftly than ever to attract more attention. The latest and most competitive mobile Operating Systems (OS) in the market today are Android 4.1, iOS 6, BlackBerry OS 7and Window Phone 8. Which of these OS is the best? What does each offer that users will look forward to? Based on market analysis, XMG Global ranks Android as the number 1 OS for Smartphones with a 3-year average (2010-2012) market share of 39 percent. iOS ranks number 2 with 18 percent share followed by Blackberry OS at number 3 and Windows Phone at number 4 with 13 percent and 5 percent market share, respectively. Because of the recent developments from Microsoft, XMG Global forecasts that by 2015, Windows Phone will be the number 2 OS next to Android. Smartphones have come a long way over the past few years and will continue to do so to appease the insatiable consumer market. As technology continues its advances, the consumer and business users are presented with an extensive choice of smartphones that will meet expectations. The smartphone ?takeoff? and ongoing feature upgrades are just proof of continuous innovation in this space. The user OS preference is just a matter of loyalty to a certain system or ?getting-used-to-it? mindset. Sometimes it is also a matter of curiosity in trying something new or the ?what-is-new-is-in? mentality of most people. One cannot simply assume that only one will emerge as a victor in this war between these OS. Different people have different wants and needs. Therefore, one OS will not be able to cater to all tastes. Other than measuring market share, it may not be possible to truly define the winner in this battle of OS. The author is the statistician/research analyst of ICT think-tank XMG Global]]>