One of Silicon Valley’s most ancient and least successful critics attacked the profit model of the Google Inc.’s (NASDAQ: GOOG) Android OS. But Roger McNamee has arrived late to the debate.
Industry experts and investors have worried over how an operating system that is essential free to customers can make money. If it could, Google might be able to diversify beyond its search revenue base. Actually, Android could cost Google money, if its intellectual property is challenged, particularly by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) or Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT), each of which is on the patent warpath.
“I watch what they have done with Android, and I’m flabbergasted because their market share in units is so high, but look at the profit share,” McNamee told Bloomberg TV. “Apple’s profit share is like 75 or 80 percent because Android has been managed essentially to make it a profitless prosperity. Right now, if Google is not careful, Android will be Samsung or Samsung will be Android.”
Douglas A. McIntyre