Rob Price, for — surprise, surprise — Business Insider:
Last year, a record 1 billion Android smartphones were shipped. Theoretically, Google should be in a position of massive growth: Android phones are increasingly less expensive compared to Apple’s, while its potential customer base is expanding as the next billion people get access to the internet in emerging markets.
And yet, for the first time ever, sales of Android devices declined in Q4 compared to Q3. Google is failing to capitalise on what should be an easy market, as it faces growing competition from up-and-coming budget smartphone manufacturers, like Xiaomi.
Search — Google’s bread-and-butter — is another problem area. While it remains the dominant player in the sphere, it is now in decline. Thanks to a Yahoo!-Mozilla deal that saw Yahoo’s search bundled with the Firefox browser, Google’s share of the search market is below 75% for the first time in years.
Certainly, Google isn’t growing at the rate that they once were, but, as Price points out, they just set an Android unit shipment record last year. And, while Google Search now has less than 75% market share, it’s still — by far and away — the most popular search engine for most of the world.
Apple is also reportedly mulling over dropping Google search as a default from its iOS Safari browser for a competitor or in-house version. It’s still unconfirmed, but it would be a massive blow for Google if it happened.
To interpolate the idiom, “it’s amazing how future Apple products beat current Google products”. Apple has made no indication that they’re creating a search engine, but if they do, who knows how well it will perform,1 or what it will do to Google?
There’s no single, existential threat to Google.
Apple is now an existential threat to Android
It seems like BI writers think they sound smarter when they use the phrase “existential threat”. It doesn’t actually make their writing or reporting any better, though.