June 22, 2024


It's the Technology

Windows 10 Mobile start screen

You think Android and iOS could do with competition

Windows 10 Mobile start screen

Hadlee Simons / Android Authority

Android and iOS are effectively a duopoly right now, but we’ve seen quite a few challengers come and go over the years. Failed rivals include BlackBerry 10, Windows Phone, WebOS, and more.

Do we still need a third major smartphone platform to take on Apple and Google’s operating systems, though? That’s what we asked last week, and here’s how you answered this poll.

Do you think we need a third smartphone platform?


Just over 3,000 votes were tallied in this poll as of writing, and it turns out that 68.69% of respondents think we do indeed need a third smartphone platform. Judging by the comments, some readers want Linux, Google’s Fuchsia, or Windows as potential third platforms.

Meanwhile, just under a third of polled readers say they don’t think we need a third smartphone platform. At least one reader suggested that we don’t necessarily need a third option if we’ve already got two options that work well enough. Another reader also pointed to apps as a major challenge for any third platform.

Nevertheless, we also wonder how many people would put their money where their mouth is and adopt a phone running a third platform in the first place. After all, we’ve already got alternative (but niche) platforms like Sailfish OS, Ubuntu Touch, and several custom Android ROMs.


  • Beardednomad: I actually loved Windows phones. The software was incredible back in the day especially on lower end hardware. It was one of the most lightweight systems. The problem was always the app gap. And that will be a problem for any third OS going forward. The only real shot is an offshoot of Android or a Linux system that can run Android apps.
  • Nick V: Although I wasn’t a Windows Phone user, I always thought the UI was innovative and pleasing. Unfortunately, the App Store was lacking severely for me to switch. I like the idea of the X Phone from Musk, and the thought of satellites to communicate, once Starlink is able to handle the bandwidth.
  • Yakubu Tukur: Yes. Window Mobile is the third OS many people need.
  • Chandler Cruttenden: I voted yes, however what I would most like to see is Google Fuchsia develop for Pixel phones. It will run the same apps but be much more efficient than Android and be much easier to refine, in the same way iOS is for Apple.
  • eszklar: Yes. Third platform would be interesting. There are mobile OSes out there such as Ubuntu Touch, SailfishOS and PostmarketOS, but none of these are mainstream. I enjoyed using Windows Phone back in the day as well. Would like to see a “pure” Linux mobileOS come about like on the Librem 5.
  • D’Sar Darkstar: There’s nothing wrong with two platforms that work well. Like you stated, Web OS, Windows phone, BlackBerry… They all failed. If it’s not broke don’t fix it. However, it would be nice if the USA could get some of those cooler phones from China, Korea and Japan and not leave us stuck with limited brands and models while being jealous of other countries better phones. I’m no fan of Samsung or Apple so we need something that brought variety and excitement like HTC and LG did.
  • duckofdeath: Android is fine, we just need to get Google off the ecosystem. They’re really going all-in on abusing the control of everything to undermine Android manufacturers to sell their own trash hardware. It’s getting kafkaesque to see all easily swayed tech “writers” swallowing Google’s lies about their own trash vs existing hardware.
  • roaduardo: We have enough fragmentation.
  • Tetso Anoki: I would really like to see a cell phone with Chrome OS.