Forget the feature set of the platform - they're roughly identical by now.
It is all a matter of evolutionary pressure now.
Android devices are created, pushed to market, accepted or rejected by it, and die or flourish at extremely fast pace, even when there is a risk of cannibalization of different products from the same manufacturer (does Nexus S kill Galaxy S? absolutely). The competition is fierce, the elimination is ruthless.
Apple devices, on the other hand, are lovingly created by the mind of The Great Chairman, and accepted unambiguously (simply because there is no other choice) by the gang of loyal followers and wannabes living within the reality distortion field.
I don't think that's enough feedback to improve.
The ever brandished threat of fragmentation is not the hand of doom, but the blessing in disguise, along with lack or presence of LED indicators, or physical keyboard, or sensor buttons, or touch buttons, or front camera, or flash, or dedicated camera shutter button, or whatever else comes to your mind. It is you that is the deciding factor in the outcome.
My prediction at this time is that Apple will be forced to retreat into a niche of being just one of dozens smartphone and tablet manufacturers. Unless -
And so the only way for the iPhone to “beat” Android would be for Apple to either open iOS up in the same way that Android is, or to create a huge variety of iPhones spread across the spectrum in terms of features and price. Neither of those things is going to happen. -- MG SieglerAnd on the other hand, just like he says, there will be a huge variety of Android phones spread across the spectrum of features, quality and price. Is this good? I'd say it is a double edged sword. Whereas Apple's quality is well known, in Android market you have to take calculated risk - it is, by definition, an early adopter market, any smartphone older than a couple of months is already obsolete. But at least you're voting with your dollars to move the whole population into the direction you want.
Let the fittest survive.