THE DAY has finally arrived. Game of Thrones series four has begun.
We can't wait to get embroiled all over again in the battles and intrigues of Westeros, and find out what this season has in store for Daenerys, Tyrion and Jon Snow. But we needed to find a way to keep occupied while we eagerly awaited 7 April and what better way than to find an excuse to write a technology themed homage to Game of Thrones.
So we present to you our guide to the Game of Phones, where we've carefully considered each of the great houses, to decide which phone maker they most closely resemble.
First, a disclaimer. We're avid Game of Thrones fans, and are aware there could be some debate over which are the greatest of the great houses, so apologies to any we've missed in our guide.
House Lannister - Apple
The Lannisters are most famous for having absolutely huge piles of cash, along with being ruthless to their competitors. Their unofficial motto, "A Lannister always pays his debts", perfectly sums up these traits. So how could they be any company other than Apple? Just like the Lannisters, the Cupertino firm has shedloads of cash in its reserves, is quick to take out its competitors - though generally through court cases over patents, rather than slashed throats - and is notoriously difficult to get any information out of.
They're also both tightknit families who always look after their own. Apple employees hardly ever leave, and the firm speaks to the public only at major launch events, doing all its scheming and planning behind closed doors, just as the Lannisters trust only family members with their darkest secrets and make sure that anyone with their blood gets a suitable position.
Beauty is another common trait the two share. Apple is known for its sleek designs that make its phones and tablets some of the most highly coveted, just as Jaime, Cersei and the Lannister clan have been blessed in the looks department. Just don't mention the iPhone 5C/Tyrion.
But while both parties have risen to become the most powerful players in their respective fields over the years, the future is less certain. Their new leaders have not been well received, and weaknesses have been revealed. But we still think that Tim Cook will stay at the helm of Apple longer than Joffrey will stay as head of the Lannisters. We certainly hope that's the case anyway, after what he did to Ned.
House Stark - Nokia
Oh how we miss Ned. The once great house has suffered blow after major blow ever since we first met its noble clan, losing countless family members (RIP Grey Wind), and with seemingly no chance of ever recovering the former glory enjoyed by one of the oldest houses in Westeros.
How akin to Nokia. Nokia has been around for what counts as eons in technology, and was a pioneer in the mobile market, dominating with its Symbian devices and loved by all. But as competitors like Apple and Blackberry rose through the ranks, there was nothing the Finnish former phone giant could do to stem the tide.
And they're both from the frozen North.
Now the Starks are struggling to regroup and start this part of the story with no clear leader, while Nokia has been swallowed up by Microsoft. Will Arya or Jon pick up the mantle from Robb and conquer their enemies? Will Nokia find a champion within Microsoft to beat Apple and Samsung once again? Only George R R Martin and Satya Nadella know if winter will come again.
House Baratheon - Microsoft
Up until recently, House Baratheon has been ruled by a notoriously bombastic, exuberant and straight-talking leader, with the stature of a giant and the subtlety of a bull in a china shop. Under the house motto, "Ours is the Fury", Robert Baratheon led a rebellion, and ascended to the top of the Red Keep. However, the death of Robert resulted in bitter rivalry among his survivors, with Joffrey, Stannis and Renly all determined to snatch his crown.
In Redmond, Microsoft has recently lost its long-serving leader, Steve Ballmer, another larger than life character who was happy to shout his way to the top. The firm is also dogged by infighting, with its divisions notorious for acting as isolated silos set on furthering their own individual ambitions rather than working for the good of the whole
Following the death of Robert, the Baratheon's have already disappeared into obscurity. Will Microsoft manage to avoid a similar fate?
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