Ah, so it's a parallel universe strategy: assume for the moment that companies such as Apple, Microsoft, and RIM, and alliances such as Symbian, don't exist. Wouldn't it be nifty if all handset manufacturers decided to forego substantive software and service feature-based differentiation and let Google provide a platform for them, one pegged to Google web services?
It's important to recognize that the Open Handset Alliance and Android have the potential to be major changes from the status quo -- one which will take patience and much investment by the various players before you'll see the first benefits. But we feel the potential gains for mobile customers around the world are worth the effort. If you’re a developer and this approach sounds exciting, give us a week or so and we’ll have an SDK available. If you’re a mobile user, you’ll have to wait a little longer, but some of our partners are targeting the second half of 2008 to ship phones based on the Android platform. And if you already have a phone you know and love, check out mobile.google.com and make sure you have Google Maps for mobile, Gmail and our other great applications on your phone. We'll continue to make these services better and add plenty of exciting new features, applications and services, too.
Yes, this would all be very nifty -- for Google, and perhaps no other vendor in the domain.
I can't wait to read the Fake Steve Jobs take on this...