Messages on the phone uses SMS, which works even on dumb phones
No, not quite. Messages on iphone CAN use SMS to communicate with other phones but that's about it. So yes a dumbphone can reason an iphone with sms, and the iphone will display the sms in messages and let the iphone user use messages to reply... but that''s it.
For example, what if the person you are trying to reach from your 'dumb phone' however is NOT using an iphone with an SMS plan? Or what if they are using messages on an iPod touch or macbook pro? These can't "fail over to SMS" to receive messages from an android or dumb phone. And since the android and dumb phone can't use messages native protocol they can't communicate.
I've been up and down this mess several times already. My daughters friends have a mix of hand me down iphones, ipod touches, and ipads that they chat on with messages. If I give my daughter an android, which would be my preference -- she would not be able to chat with her friends unless they ALL moved over to an alternative messaging app (such as skype), which would be difficult for her to make happen. (In some cases the kids are using a 'family' ipad; and would need their parents permission to even install another app... so the whole group is basically captured on messages and ios or lose the ability to talk to these kids.)
Still, Skype is owned by Microsoft, and his example is literally using Microsoft on Microsoft to talk to a Microsoft product somewhere else. It's a dumb statement.
Agreed his particular example wasn't great. However you can use skype on everything from smart TVs to blackberries to linux desktops. Yes, it is end to end a microsoft software product, and not truly open, but it runs on pretty much anything.
the only one who has not is the one with financial incentive not to (because they sell hardware).
That's wrong. Microsoft has finanicial incentive not to... they'd prefer you ran windows and xbox and windows phones; you might argue they HAVE to support ios or become irrelevant; but that doesn't explain their support for osx, blackberry, or linux...
Similarly, apple messages+facetime, by being apple only IS hurting it. Lots of people use it on their mac or ipad, but they all have to have something else installed to talk to the other half of the planet who isn't running an apple product. If messages+facetime was x-plat it could well become as ubiquitous as skype; and it would be a good halo product to attract people to the apple hardware. As it is, it's mostly within-family product because no large organization or heterogenous group of people are ever ALL running just Apple products. There's always someone with a Windows computer or Android phone... and usually lots of people like that.
Even in my daughters group; as the kids are getting older and starting to get phones -- i fully expect the 'apple monopoly' on their communications is going to end. Because as they advance in their teens they'll all soon have phones etc. And they'll have permission to install apps etc. They'll all but inevitably shift to hangouts or skype or something as a group. I can already see it beginning; and my daughters next phone won't be an iphone -- none of the upcoming handme downs are iphones so unless she get a job buys it herself but that's still a few years out yet.