(AAPL) and Google
(GOOG) play a major gatekeeper role for apps with the App Store and Google Play store. Facebook seems to have been partly motivated to buy WhatsApp because it feared being pushed off to the side from "controlling" the mobile experience thanks to the gate-keeping positions those companies have. (Facebook Phone didn't get the company where it wanted.)
The silo app structure of mobile today also serves the incumbents. If HTML5 truly takes off in the way that Tencent and Kik want, the gate-keeping role will pass to them from Apple and Google (or in China, one of the big gate-keepers is 91Wireless owned by Baidu (BIDU)).
It's these new gatekeepers that really become your mobile browser in the new non-siloed world. They get a piece of payments, e-commerce, ad networks and search instead of PayPal, Amazon (AMZN) or Google.
The differentiation will come from getting the starting place app that everyone wants and then building lots of hooks into your other daily habit apps so you actually never have to leave your main app.
At the time of publication the author is long BBRY.Follow @ericjackson This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.