Android Prototype Sightings at CES

The first devices that run Google’s much-anticipated Android mobile operating system made a few appearances last week at CES. Here is the ‘GW4’ from Chinese mobile company Winstron:

As we’ve mentioned a few times, Android along with the iPhone will erode the carrier control that has stifled innovation in the mobile world thus far. Basically any incentive to innovate mobile applications was stifled by the fact that products had to pass through the filter of each individual carrier for various model phones and operating systems.

Now the adoption of open and standardized platforms (both Android and the iPhone’s SDK, which will be released next month) will open the floodgates of innovation and make it easy for third-party application developers to bring their apps to market. This is the same level of open and decentralized innovation that we’ve seen flourish on the Web.

This means there is a great deal in store for mobile search and entertainment apps. Given that mobile and local are fused at the hip, local search will be among the biggest beneficiaries and sources of product development of this new environment. Expect an exciting year for mobile and its intersections with local search.

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Related: See some high-level numbers from TKG’s U.S. Mobile Forecast here.

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