Sour Grapes department: former webOS investor bashes Android

Sour Grapes department: former webOS investor bashes Android
Roger McNamee's name might sound familiar to some of you who remember back to the days when the Palm Pre and webOS stunned the smartphone world at CES 2009. Working at Elevation Partners, Mc Namee's company made big investments in Palm, trying to keep the company afloat until the tremendous sales of the "iPhone-killer," the Palm Pre, would turn things around. That was the plan, anyway. Of course, as we now know, the Pre never sold well at all and it was the Motorola DROID that became the challenger to Apple's iconic smartphone.

McNamee, as you might expect, is not enamored with Android. In a recent interview, the Venture Capitalist says that Google's open source OS "is the equivalent of having a motor scooter at the Indianapolis 500." He also points out that despite the large lead Android has over iOS in terms of volume, it is Apple that is grabbing the vast majority of profits in the industry. McNamee also says that Google needs to be careful to make sure that Samsung's success with Android doesn't lessen Google's connection with Android, or else in other's minds Samsung will be Android and Android will be Samsung.


You can check out the whole interview that McNamee gave Bloomberg by clicking on the video below. "Android does not do much," says the investor. Is this just the sour grapes talking?

source: Bloomberg

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72 Comments

72. PhoneAddiction

Posts: 79; Member since: Nov 07, 2012

Is this a debate site or informative? JW.. This site is becoming more and more like ESPN's First Take.

66. The_Innovation

Posts: 649; Member since: Jul 18, 2012

That's a lovely lovely biased opinion. *Bane voice*

68. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

+1 to the Bane voice....that might be my new fav villan....

70. The_Innovation

Posts: 649; Member since: Jul 18, 2012

"Of course"

61. Droids-R-us

Posts: 35; Member since: Sep 17, 2012

While I am having a grumble, Google have possibly Innovated more ideas than anyone, Providing everything it can to the best user experience and FREE ! What about apple innovation? Touch screen phones, Sony Erricson and blackberry plus other did it first. Rounded rectangle phone, all screen, all touch sensitive, Sony did it first. First ever pad, film 2001, Star trek next generation. First video phone, 3 in the late 90's. First email and internet, Nokia among others. First to have a shortcut bar, LG. All these things and more apple have tried to sue over! When I talk to iphone users they appear to think Apple invented everything and others copied Apple? Go look at the two phones side by side, have a play with them then decide. I agree Android is quite ugly and gray/black but its the only one that lets you change it to what ever you like!

60. Droids-R-us

Posts: 35; Member since: Sep 17, 2012

I cant believe what I have just read? 1, Android was created 1 year before IOS. 2, Apple do not innovate, they have taken ideas that already exist, made them better then patented them is if they invented them. Now they sue anyone who does the same. 3, Android does more than any other phone operating system that exists "It is completely open" No other phone lets you change the Launcher/font/icons/OS ETC, the list is nearly endless!. Motor scooter?? Android devices have the fastest processor and highest spec of any phone that exists. He is even criticizing Android for not being as greedy as Apple who screw every last penny they can form people, Example 100$/£ more for a bigger memory, patenting a rounded corner, suing ifone who patented their name years before apples iphone, copying the "Pad" from star trek then suing samsung for making a similar product. 4, people by iphones exactly because they don't do much, very simple to operate and learn, therefor stable. Has he ever even used an Android phone?????

59. Bluesky02

Posts: 1439; Member since: Dec 05, 2011

Okay i agree that Apple transform and rebuild the markets. But they are not innovating anymore. I see same yearly upgraded product, with some hardware changes, apps and that's it. Samsung is innovating, next year Samsung is bringing Flexible displays. Nokia is always innovating, PureView Camera, Nokia City Lens, Optical Image Stabilization. In fact the company that has innovate the most is Nokia.

57. Fuego84

Posts: 357; Member since: May 13, 2012

Who cares if apple started markets or not. The reality is that the first product out there will always be out done by the competition. Why? Because the competition will examine that first device find out what's it missing and how they can improve it and Viola a better product is born being android. Sure not a lot of android devices out there make a premium feeling device but the android OS is always current where IOS is always late & outdated.

52. Edmund

Posts: 656; Member since: Jul 13, 2012

He makes some very valid points

51. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

durka durka to the guy in the article. The run away craze with the Nexus4 proves that google is in no danger of losing "android" to "samsung". He misses the cart before the horse. The beauty of Android unlike iOS or WebOS that its playdough.. it can be anything you want. And now its beautiful playdough that runs super smooth that can do anything you want. Its not like bringing a motor scooter at the indie.. its like owning every car on the track except the lone iOS car. Apple cant always "bring in all the profits" if Android is consistently eating world wide market share. If/when apple starts to become irrelevant (its happening now), its margins will shrink as it starts to have sales, prepaid, and free models (already starting to happen) to stay in the game at all. At that point either apples massive profits will drop (has started to happen) or it will continue to lose large swaths of market share to chase high margins (has also been happening). Its a lose-lose for apple as far as maintaining their current margins no matter how u cut it. Apple will never go out of business and they will always have their loyal fans, but they will be re-relegated to "niche" product much like they always have been.

43. snowgator

Posts: 3629; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Okay, I loves me some WebOS, and miss it. But we all know this: Without Android, there is no innovation or true explosion of mobile. Not to the degree it has in the short time it has. There is a reason WebOS failed, MS is scrambling to become a player, RIM is barely treading water and Apple is spending more time suing then releasing new devices: Google acquiring Android and kicking it up a notch changed the game. At first, smartphone was a business only device and the rest of the world was still paying by the minute for phone calls. The Smartphone revolution as a personal device was started by Apple, but it has been Android that made it available to everyone. And every function that devices have in them are available on Androids pretty much out of the box. This guy knows it.

42. parkwaydr

Posts: 572; Member since: Sep 07, 2011

I guarantee had this guy invested in android and Google back then instead of palm, he'd be singing a different tune right about now, he's just mad he took a big chance with palm and it failed miserably. Which is sad, because web os is awesome. I really hope this new open web os thing pans out.

44. tedkord

Posts: 17519; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

WebOS was awesome, but Palm paired it with garbage hardware. No one in their right mind thought it was going to take off once we got a look at the Pre and Pixi.

47. parkwaydr

Posts: 572; Member since: Sep 07, 2011

Agree. With this new open web os I would love to see some new stuff. In fact, I think with Samsung dominating android at the moment, companies like HTC should put web os out. Could you imagine a droid DNA level device running web os?

41. Whateverman

Posts: 3295; Member since: May 17, 2009

This dude is a joke. He lost all credibility when he listed Google as one of the biggest patent trolls and then said, "Maybe Apple". Really dude? SMH.

40. Kal-el

Posts: 96; Member since: Dec 14, 2012

the only way to get haters to have something pretty awesome worth hating......Innovation? funny considering google voice/ vlingo were on android phones before apple could even Spell SIRI...Apple is a good chef taking pieces and ingredients from all other companies and just tweaking it a lil to claim their "OWN" recipe....kinda like makin a chocolate cookie and saying your version is better cuz you added more chocolate chips into it....doesn't take away from the fact that the idea from creator of the brilliant original cookie in the first place. Without ALL these other companies google/windows/palm etc....there wouldn't be apple....HELL more than 70% of parts of an iphone is made by other companies like sharp and samsung....The only "INNOVative" things apple creating is it's advertising into fooling people that their is the "best" phone and they invented it. PS: GOOGLE GLASS PROJECT.....NUFF SAID!

33. Shino

Posts: 196; Member since: Jul 23, 2012

Hahaha! Phonearena, you just posted some really big s**t, again! A few days ago I praised one of your artcles and thought you started hired better educated people. And now this?! "Sour grapes"?! Who do you think you are?! How pathetic is to show how illiterate and immmature your team is, by puttind a title like this? You think you are smarter than a REAL expert, actually?! I don't think so. Really, really pathetic.

38. Sniggly

Posts: 7305; Member since: Dec 05, 2009

That "real expert" threw a lot of money into what is now a dead OS. Clearly he knows so much what he's talking about.

64. jroc74

Posts: 6023; Member since: Dec 30, 2010

Compare that to Matias Duarte that left and joined the Android team about a year before Web OS devcies were killed off by HP. This guy probably wishes he woulda let his money follow Duarte.

30. rusticguy

Posts: 2828; Member since: Aug 11, 2012

Sounds badly Butthurt or has money invested in Apple :D

29. gmacattacks

Posts: 24; Member since: Sep 07, 2012

Hater

27. ilia1986 unregistered

"Android doesn't do much" Seriously?!

35. gmacattacks

Posts: 24; Member since: Sep 07, 2012

He's just mad that Web OS Failed miserably

37. KFear

Posts: 170; Member since: Feb 06, 2012

Android takes ALL of google's services and it puts itself in the middle as a means to each service. They are also free services and most of them work quite well. Palm failed to do this. Windows, Apple, and Google do this very well. "android doesn't do much." You're career isn't doing much!

46. PotDragon

Posts: 214; Member since: Jul 22, 2011

Spoken like someone who never actually HAD a Palm Pre. I had a Pre & a Pre Plus. There is no question that WebOS blew away both android AND IOS. BTW....you must compare it to Eclair or Gingerbread as those were the versions back then. The 3gs or the ip4 was the iPhone. Trouble Palm actually had? Complete crap hardware! The slide loosened after WAY TOO light usage making your voice transmit in fragments. I cannot tell you how many handsets i sent back for replacement. Too bad.

65. KFear

Posts: 170; Member since: Feb 06, 2012

I work in wireless and I've had a webos device. Software wise, webos is innovative as hell but it still didn't offer nearly the intergration or the app market. The software had bugs too and tons of memory issues. I agree that the hardware was terrible. My technicians couldn't even mix most of the issues except for the power button having stopped. It did not blow the other experiences out of the water. None of my customers ever really said that. They wanted I phones because of the apps and intergration or android for customization. Webos was a fail in more regards than just hardware. Good idea though.

71. gmacattacks

Posts: 24; Member since: Sep 07, 2012

also tiny screens hahaha the hp veer was a complete joke in my opinion

26. networkdood

Posts: 6330; Member since: Mar 31, 2010

Well, his firm did buy a 25% stake in Palm, in 2007...325 million - I am sure he recovered without too many problems. Android does not innovate? Well, I am not sure how much more innovation can be done - but there can be improvements to RAM usage, battery life, efficiency, etc. Android can only go up as it has almost limitless potential. Maybe, now that the stock of APPLE has fallen some, he can buy some of APPLE's stock. Apple did not innovate anything - it took existing ideas and combined them into a marketable solution to the consumer. It is a shame that webOS is no longer on smartphones, but there are just only so much spaces out there for mobile OSes...in a few years another one will come along.

22. masterchina

Posts: 55; Member since: Sep 27, 2011

Wah, wah, wah all the way home!

21. anshul0000 unregistered

jealous?

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