Wednesday April 13, 2011

iOS Upgrades Are Part of the Value Chain

Via Horace Dediu at asymco:

The problem of upgrade failure is a symptom of a deeper dysfunction inherent in immature modular business architectures. It’s not just that the brightest at Microsoft or Nokia or Google can’t make an upgrade stick. It’s that the upgrade is not universally beneficial to the value chain. To remedy this, licensors have to resort to contractual obligations to ensure upgrades, but enforcement is non-trivial and can lead to aggravated relationships.

Say what you will about Apple and their zealous control of the iOS stack, but their control gives them this great advantage—they answer to no one when they want to release an OS upgrade.