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A Quick Review on Mobile Platforms


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A base technology on which some other processes or technologies are built and run is called a “platform. " Smarphones are mobile “platforms” and are closely connected to both healthcare technology and health information management. Therefore scope of this study is limited to some of these prominent mobile platforms viz. , Androids, iPhone, Windows mobile, Blackberry, Symbian etc.

Weighing the Performance A recent report released in August 2012 by The International Data Corporation (IDC), a global market intelligence firm observes that Android and iOS together enjoyed a market share of 85% in their Q2-2012 sales. The mobile operating system race would be lead by Androids followed by Apple’s iOS as developers adopt them relatively at a faster pace, predicts IDC. Not lagging behind is the Windows Phone, it adds.

“VisionMobile” a London based ecosystems analyst firm too holds the same view in the light of their Developer Economics 2012 Survey. “Irrespective of which platform developers currently use most, majority of them who plan to adopt a new platform are likely to adopt Windows Phone, ” writes Andreas Pappas, a Senior Analyst with the analyst firm in a Blog. According to the Developer Economics 2012 Survey, “Brew and Symbian fared the worst among those developers who plan to abandon their platforms. Brew, the first mobile platform with an app store faces developer attrition because it failed to compete against low-end Android designs targeting similar market segments followed by Symbian” says Andreas. Symbian’s abandonment rate has rapidly accelerated from 39% last year to 52% in 2012 and he attributes this fall to the companies’ inability to generate the kind of network effects enjoyed by Android and iOS. Same is the story with Blackberry.

A large number of developers are abandoning it although it is used as their main platform, he points out. Samsung’s “Bada” platform is another one that is being abandoned, he observes. Interestingly, with all drawbacks Androids and iOS suffer from, most developers use both at the same time - 72% of developers that use iOS, also use Android while 64% of developers using Android are found using iOS, claims Andreas.

“It shows that they will overcome all barriers and adopt any platform that gives them reach, ” he hopes. Unlocking Patient Value Experts think that Platforms will contain differing capabilities and will consolidate over time. Ericsson estimates that Smartphone market will exceed 3 billion units in 2017 despite being in consolidation mode.

And there is no reason it should not. Studies by Market research firms show that more than 80% of physicians are now using smart phones and tablets. The Developer Economics Survey also finds developer-mobility across platforms moving up.

“Improvements in cross-platform development will increase mobility even further, ” it firmly states. That would mean a more vibrant competition between Closed and Open platforms soon emerging and the latter start solving big problems in healthcare relating to patient health records and other administrative routines. Going open source for sharing clinical information would significantly reduce costs. Of course there are challenges that need to be met and that can happen only through expert human intervention. -


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