If you didn't know, we're pretty big Android guys here. Huge, in fact. But we also respect the iPhone and though we understand its pitfalls, we also do understand that the iPhone changed smartphones forever and is embedded in the public's mind. EVERYTHING is compared to the iPhone. So when an analyst predicts that Android will outpace the iPhone by 2012, our Android fanboy-side jumps for joy but our realist-side raises an eyebrow.

Informa Telecoms & Media Analysts predict that Android with its open source operating system and no licensing cost will allow phone manufacturers to keep costs low and deliver affordable Android handsets to consumers eager to save a dollar. That viewpoint definitely makes sense in our current economic client, plus the advantage of the open source operating system allows for growth unseen in the mobile segment of the market and developers truly have the power. Combine it with the fact that Android is carrier flexible and multiple phone manufacturers are on board with Android, we can expect to see a load more of new Android devices in the near future.

However, to catch the iPhone? The iPhone in 2012 is sure to be a pretty darn good device (hopefully they'll solve cut & paste by then) and that doesn't even mention the fact that the iPhone 2009, 2010, and 2011 models are sure to garner a lot of press which allows Apple to be at the forefront of the smartphone world. To really challenge the iPhone in marketshare, Google needs to step up advertising for Android and keep offering best-in-class Google services with Android. The bottom line: In order to be as prominent and dominant as the iPhone, Android needs to be as synonymous with Google as the iPhone is with Apple.

So though we would love to surpass the iPhone in 2012. We believe the bar is just a wee bit lower than that. For now.

What do you guys think?

[vnunet via androinica]