Is any company truly safe in 2014?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| Published: January 23, 2014

Anything can happen when the consumer is in charge of a company's future. For entities like Samsung and Apple, their entire worlds would shut down if people stopped buying their devices. The same can be said about HTC, LG, Motorola, and the list goes on. From year to year, these companies create the best that they can in hopes that people file in by the truckloads to buy whatever they release. (Or they hope their marketing is good enough to get the job done.)

That's why the word "safe" may be a bit tricky when we're talking about these companies. Because it's almost certainly not guaranteed, right? How can it be? Consumers are fickle, their needs change, and it can take awhile before a company finally adapts to those needs.

What about momentum, though? There's no arguing that once a company gets on a roll, and can sustain it for a couple of years, that the next few years can look almost easy. One new, and eagerly anticipated device after the next, and you've suddenly got yourself a company that's on a hot streak. The apple of the consumer's eye.

I'm sure plenty of you have an opinion on which company, or companies, out there would fit that bill.

But momentum isn't guaranteed, and just a few trip ups or miscalculations can slow the whole show down. Which is why I grew curious about safety for companies that are looking to make some waves this year. More than that, though, I can't help but wonder if the momentum of our industry's giants has started to sputter.

I know that many of you probably think the safe bets are Apple and Samsung, and I don't think you'd be wrong for thinking that. These two companies have dominated the mobile industry, and they've done it completely for the last few years. It's hard to argue that when someone thinks Android, they're not really thinking Google, but Samsung instead. And when someone points at a phone and says, "I want an iPhone," but the handset clearly isn't an Apple product, you know the brand's name speaks for itself.

In these two situations, it would seem that nothing could really slow the companies and their products down. After all, they're going to showcase brand new devices this year, and they'll probably do just as well in the marketing department again. So maybe they are the only safe companies.

But what about LG? If we're talking about momentum, then it would be a safe bet that LG's probably got the most moving into 2014. With the G2, and with plenty of attention on the G Flex, all eyes seem to be on what's next from LG. If they can use that to their advantage, and truly improve on the G2's and G Flex's design and features, then there might not be much for LG to worry about.

I picked a company a little out of the box, though. Instead of going with the safe bets, I chose BlackBerry. I honestly believe that the company is safe this year. Why? Because they've got a new CEO who has a plan, but the plan doesn't translate to an immediate turnaround. Instead, he's looking into the future, and everyone at BlackBerry knows this. So, just by default, I think the company famous for hardware keyboards almost has a free pass this year, which could potentially make them the safest company this year.

What do you think? Do you believe any company is safe this year, or could any of them fall to the back of the pack? Which company do you believe is the safest, and which company do you believe is in the most danger this year? Let me know!