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RIM QNX will fail to compete with Apple or Android by 2015, says Gartner

Jenny Williams

Research in Motion's (RIM) QNX operating system (OS) will struggle to compete with Google's Android OS and Apple's iOS in the tablet market, according to a research firm.

RIM plans to migrate all Blackberry devices to its QNX operating system (OS), currently used for its Playbook tablet, in 2012 to create a consistent platform and user experience. Despite this, research firm Gartner says RIM will fail to develop a strong enough ecosystem to compete with Android and Apple in four years' time.

"It will take time and significant effort for RIM to attract developers and deliver a compelling ecosystem of applications and services around QNX to position it as a viable alternative to Apple or Android. This will limit RIM's market share growth," said Carolina Milanesi, research vice-president at Gartner.

However, Milanesi believes RIM will be popular with businesses.

"It will be mainly organisations that will be interested in RIM's tablets because they either already have RIM's infrastructure deployed or have stringent security requirements," she said.

Milanesi says too many manufacturers are prioritising hardware features over applications, services and user experience. "Tablets will be much more dependent on the latter [user experience] than smartphones have been, and the sooner suppliers realise that, the better chance they have to compete head-to-head with Apple."

Gartner predicts Apple will maintain the largest share of the tablet OS market, with 69% of tablet OSs in 2011 and 47% in 2015.

Google's Android OS market share is expected to increase to 39% from 20% by 2015, but be limited by Google's attempts to prevent fragmentation.

Worldwide sales of media tablets to end users by OS (in thousands of units)        
Operating system 2010 2011 2012 2015
iOS 14,766 47,964 68,670 138,497
Marketshare 84% 69% 64% 47%
Android 2,502 13,898 26,382 113,457
Marketshare 14% 20% 24% 39%
MeeGo 107 788 1,271 3,057
Marketshare 1% 1% 1% 1%
WebOS 0% 2,796 4,245 8,886
Marketshare 0% 4% 4% 3%
QNX 0% 3,901 7,134 29,496
Marketshare 0% 6% 7% 10%
Other OS 234% 432 510 700
Marketshare 1% 1% 1% 0%
Total 17,610 69,780 108,211 294,093

Source: Gartner


 


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