Why most (if not next to all) smartphone vendors can not be as successful as Apple:
For one simple economic reason: They do not own an AppStore, and thus Samsung, Sony, etc. pp can not cash in the 30% of all transactions made for apps and other content within.
Basically all HTC & Co can earn is the “small” profit on the initial hardware sale. Apple on the other hand makes plenty of surplus money on all third-party software and content sales thereafter. All they do is having the monopoly on the distribution hub.
Lucky Apple for this coincidence. And initially, with the introduction of the original, 1st-gen iPhone Steve Jobs did not even wanted to allow native Apps on iPhoneOS, … I have the feeling even he did not foresee this billions coming.