What's the Real Reason AT&T Didn't Like Google Android?

It looks like the iPhone isn't the only "cool" phone AT&T wireless has agreed to carry. After meetings with Google, AT&T said their fears have been allayed that Google Android phones would be too Google app centric, giving Google too much control over AT&T's choice of apps and OS customization. Ah... Ahem...Excuse me! Anybody check their iPhones lately to see if Apple has a bit too much control over their iPhone operating system and apps??? I don't recall too many AT&T logos, OS customization or non-Apple apps showing up on the iPhone when it launched with AT&T.

Up until the recent release of the iPhone SDK, the iPhone was the most closed software platform on the planet, and even with the SDK, Apple still controls which applications will be available to iPhone users by requiring all software be delivered via the Apple Store. The iPhone is exactly what AT&T claims they feared about Google Android, and look how successful the iPhone has been, despite its closed, proprietary hardware and software. And Google Android is described as open source, at least as claimed by Google.

Something doesn't smell right about this story we're being feed from AT&T. The beef between AT&T and Google Android has to fall somewhere other than the "Google centric" excuse we're being given. Is it other restrictions Google might be placing on the phone, such as requiring that at least Google apps be present on the phone, or that Google Search be the default search engine? (Sounds reminiscent of the old default browser wars.) What is it?

I'd like to hear from AT&T what the real reason is. Or did the success of the iPhone change AT&T's mind about closed, proprietary cell phone platforms?

Revenue and happy shareholders trumphs philosophical differences.


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