In contrast, Android is the industry's laughing stock in terms of consistency. Compared to Apple's ( AAPL) iOS, Microsoft's ( MSFT) Windows Phone, and BlackBerry ( BBRY), the Android experience differs from device to device, and that's ultimately hurting Google, in terms of customer satisfaction. Samsung, HTC, Verizon, AT&T ( T) -- they all have their fingers in customizing Android, and it's a jarring experience from a consumer perspective, switching from device to device. That is, if your Android device gets any operating system updates at all. The obvious solution: Google replaces Android with Chrome OS. There is no huge technological difficulty for Google to replace Android with Chrome OS. Google already makes Chrome OS devices itself, running on Verizon. It's 100% obvious to me what Google's next step is in expanding Chrome OS: First, it will add Chrome OS tablets -- Chromepads. These will be both stand-alone, largely similar to the iPad, as well as "laptop-tablet convertibles," similar to so many Windows 8 PCs. The Google Pixel laptop sets the stage here, as the first Chrome OS touchscreen device, running on Verizon. In addition, it's also Google's first PC that is not made in conjunction with Samsung, Acer, Lenovo or HP. Google simply worked directly with a manufacturer in Taiwan/China.
There is little doubt that Google will release multiple Chrome OS tablet devices already in 2013. This will establish Chrome OS as a credible "touch only" operating system. Seeing as the Web itself is not optimized for finger-touch -- rather, for mouse/touchpad on a PC -- this would also entail optimizing the Web experience for finger-touch, with large touch-targets. Google, of course, is the one company in the world that can ensure that this happens to the Web. Once such a finger-touch optimization has taken place inside Chrome OS and on the Web experience, Google would be ready to launch its first Chrome OS smartphone -- "Chromephone." This likely takes us to mid-2014. In launching a Chromephone, Google can give all of its previous Android partners the finger. Unlike Android, which is provided under an open source license, Google does not risk having the likes of Samsung, HTC and all the others modifying Chrome OS. For the Chromephone, Google would simply do what it just did with the Pixel Chromebook: Go directly to the manufacturers in Taiwan and China and create its own hardware label. It's not even clear that Google would bother calling its wholly owned subsidiary Motorola ( MOT)for this task.