This year saw some great action in mobile OS with the launch of Web OS by Palm and Maemo by Nokia. Android got some refreshing handsets to call home while Symbian and WinMo had some significant improvements. This Renewed interest in OS has been primarily due to the continued sucess of Apple iPhone. Lesson well learned by others. Apple continued it's dream run and it's lead just seems to be increasing.
While there has been a whole lot of smart phones hitting the market this year (half of it seems to be HTC) the notable aspect among the best sellers was the combination of hardware+OS+services.
1. Apple iPhone 3GS OSX 3.0
Apple continued to lead the pack with it's superfast iPhone and kept it's major OS upgrade compatible with the older iPhones and thus earning some brownies. Though 3GS isn't path breaking, It still gets the top spot as it continues to entice user and dominated the market for 3 years
2. Motorola Droid - Android 2.0
Dec 09 saw the debut of the best ever Android handset, aptly named Droid. A much needed hit for Motorola. Droid garnered 3% of mobile web traffic in the launch weekend itself and has been acknowledged as the first serious threat to iPhone supremacy and Time magazine named it the device of the year. Droid has the potential to be on top spot by 2010.
3. Nokia N900 - Maemo
Nokia continued to bridge the gap between Cellphones and Tablets with the launch of N900. A beast with huge screen n keyboard, it runs on maemo OS (linux based) and represents the future of cellphones or rather the opening up an entirely new market segment which some call MID (mobile Internet devices). Maemo will soon face competition from Chrome OS. Nokia's flagship N97 running the latest symbian however didn't live up to expectation and was quickly overshadowed by N900 and others.
4. Palm Pre - Web OS
Palm made a sucessfull comback to the smartphone market ( something it cofounded) with the launch of Pre running on its brand new WebOS. Though Pre had many shortcomings it was well received thanks to it's ability to take multitasking to the next level and intutive UI making it ideal for the young on the run.
5. HTC HD2 - WinMo 6.5
HTC continued churning out really good looking handsets with their biggest launch being HD2. Driven by a near 1ghz processor this monster tops it all when it comes to hardware and is the best thing that ever happened to WinMo. HTC brilliantly hid the ugly side of WinMo 6.5 with it's SenseMe UI.
With Google phone launch imminent and Droid making excellent inroads, Apple will have the most challenging year ahead as other handset makers line up to take on iPhone with renewed hope.
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