For anyone who has been using smartphones for many years now, you may have used a variety of different platforms in that time. There was a stretch there where we almost had an embarrassment of riches, as far as options were concerned. Windows Phone, iOS, Android, and webOS were all readily available, and, in each case, there was at least one phone worth using to enjoy those mobile operating systems.
It’s honestly a little sad to see that we’ve had our options whittled down to just Android and iOS at this point.
I think it’s possible that Microsoft just decides to jump back into the mobile space in 2018 (or later) and launches a Surface Phone, naysayers ignored. While it might not be likely –the company has a pretty solid thing going for it right now with apps and services that hold no platform allegiance– I wouldn’t completely count them out. So maybe we get Windows 10 Mobile back on store shelves in the near future.
What we probably won’t get is webOS, though, and I’ll tell you right here and now that I’d be willing to throw money at that phone (as long as it was a high-end flagship device worth it, of course). There are moments where I’ll be using my Android phone or my iPhone and I’ll just wish I could go back to using the Palm Pre 2, or just webOS in general.
Using the iPhone X hasn’t alleviated that wish, either. Yes, iOS is now very similar to webOS, but it’s still a very Apple implementation. There’s no . . . flair to it, I guess. Gestures are great, but webOS had that wave launcher for quick app access. That was legitimately pretty awesome. Swiping up and pausing for a moment on the iPhone X just brings up the standard multitasking window we’ve seen for a little while now.
Still, using gestures to get around on the iPhone X does harken back to webOS and it is cool. But I would very much like to see a webOS comeback, to be perfectly frank. Not just because I want webOS back, either. But because I think we should have more than two primary options for mobile operating systems. Android, even with its custom user interfaces and manufacturer-specific features, is still Android when it’s all said and done. And iOS is, well, always iOS.
The return of webOS would shake things up, and it would get even more interesting if Windows 10 Mobile scrambled its way back onto the stage, too. So I guess maybe I want a webOS and Windows 10 Mobile comeback, both platforms seeing plenty of developer support (this is still the hardest part to achieve, and probably why these futures won’t happen) and some fantastic hardware that adopts the design cues of this year and beyond.
It’s all a pipe dream, though. Good thing Apple, Samsung, HTC, Motorola, LG, Huawei, and so many other companies are putting out some great hardware and software, because, all things considered, we probably are still living in a time where our smartphones riches are overflowing — even if there are only two mobile operating systems to choose from these days.
What do you think? Would you like to see webOS and/or Windows 10 Mobile make a big comeback in the years ahead? Do you have any fond memories of using either platform? Let me know!