I am flying to Las Vegas for CES.
Any time I fly, I act like I am going to a deserted island for a month. I load up on things to do, for fear of being alone with my thoughts and going insane.
So, I downloaded 10 episodes of the Startup podcast, rented two documentaries from iTunes, loaded a bunch of music on my phone, and downloaded four books.
Then I got on the plane, and realised I could get internet… so I am ignoring all of that to send emails, check Twitter, and do some writing.
As I was preparing for my long trip of solitude, I was trying to decide on a book to read for the trip. Even though I have half a dozen unread books in my Kindle account, I thought I needed another book, so I was considering downloading Den Of Thieves, which is one of the great business books I have yet to read.
I was on my iPhone, using Safari to look at the book, and I saw something new from Apple that should worry Amazon.
As soon as I typed the first six letters of book title in Safari, it offered to send me to iBooks to buy the book. Clicking on that kicked me straight to Apple’s iBookstore.
If I didn’t click on that link, I would go to Google. But guess what happens in Google? There’s a big fat box that points me to Barnes & Noble. It also points me to Good Reads, which Amazon owns. That box also has links for Google’s Play store, and something called Oyster Books.
Finally, below that is Amazon’s link.
For Amazon, this sort of thing has to be disconcerting. Right now, it’s only books. But in the long run, what else could it be? Everything?
Apple and Google control the only two mobile operating systems that matter — iOS and Android.
Apple and Google are bitter rivals with Amazon.
Apple has been fighting Amazon in court over an e-book case. It also competes with Amazon since Amazon sells a smartphone, a cheap tablet, a TV streaming device, as well as digital music, videos, and much more.
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt calls Amazon Google’s biggest competition. The reason is that Google’s most lucrative searches are based on people buying stuff. As Amazon becomes the place you search for stuff to buy, it’s a drain on Google’s most lucrative searches.
Neither Google nor Apple has much of an incentive to help out Amazon. They both want to funnel people into their own stores, away from Amazon.
This explains, in part, why Amazon is trying to make its own phone. It can’t afford to let its biggest rivals control its fate.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.