It has been 25 months since I switched from an HTC Kaiser
on Windows Mobile 6.5 to an iPhone 3GS. At the time I was not sure about the ‘all touch screen’ keyboard and the fact that iOS is close not allowing to install what ever I would find useful.
1 week after I never looked back.
I started to like my new iPhone 3GS pretty quickly. It is a great phone, lighter than the Kaiser, thin and easy to hold, wide touch screen, smooth UI, etc…
I did not jump on the iPhone 4 last year as I had a 24 months contract and as I thought about taking the Android path as I am a big user of all Google services: gmail for personal emails, gmail for the email account linked to this blog, shared calendars with friends, Docs, gMaps, Translate, Google Voice while I was in the US (hopefully coming soon to Europe
), Local. I am looking forward to having Navigation as well (why paying for TomTom when Google does it for free?).
Last year, neither the Nexus S or Galaxy S made me switch. I always saw the iPhone 4 better than those 2.
Now there is a whole new game: iPhone 4S vs Samsung Galaxy S II / Google Nexus Prime.
In my view the S II is above the 4S (it would need an entire post to explain why), while the Nexus Prime will be a beast putting the bar even higher (if GSM Arena leaks
are true). I am just waiting for the 19th of October
to be convinced. Google I know you can do it.
Having said all this, this morning I kind of thought about Android: what if it feels too different from my easy to use iOS 4.2, what if even being ‘more open’ it takes me longer to get what I need done, what if I get confused with all these widget panels that are supposed to summarize the data I need from the Apps.
Then I thought about purchase decisions of the various smartphones: iOS vs. Android is like MACs vs. PCs or like… well that’s the point, nothing else.
For most consumers thinking about switching from PCs to MACs, it has always been a problem of being used to PCs at home and at work. Switching to the Apple side is a drastic change.
Here I am now, facing the dilemma of switching from iOS to Android, fearing to be too used and dependent on iOS.
I thought about other consumption habits which would prevent to switch from one ‘platform’ to another. I don’t see any:
- Cars: any car in any country is the same, your own habits don’t have to change. Automatic or Manual. You buy a new car or rent one, it is easy to manoeuvre, blinkers on the left, radio in the centre, etc… And it is not a question of brands despite strong oppositions: being used to a Mercedes, you’ll ride a BMW very easily. Same things with bikes, motorcycles, boats (motor or sails), etc…
- Home Telephones: 12 keys, plus 1 red and 1 green. That’s all you need, in any country.
- Radio / TV: looking for a radio station or a TV channel is pretty much the same from one equipment to another. Up and Down or 9 keys on the remote.
- Lift, bus, taxi, subway: your own habits from France are going to be the same in Los Angeles or Berlin.
- Kitchen: microwaves are the same everywhere, fridges as well, and ovens sort of the same.
- Laundry: a washing machine, despite some being over sophisticated, are the same, fill in, powder/gel, program, on, 45 minutes, done.
I am pushing it strongly on some points on purpose. If you have a Sony Bravia TV and then want to switch to a Pioneer, or a Samsung washing machine to a Whirlpool, it is just a question of new specs, not habits.
But when it comes to computers or smartphones, all of us are now divided in 2 groups. Switching from one side to the other means thinking about it soundly and changing a lots of things:
- Interface habits such as shortcuts, layout, etc…
- Re-buying softwares & apps
- Change equipment and accessories
I might certainly get the Nexus Prime to try Android out as I always wanted. I will make my own judgments and then if I don’t like it, I’ll get an iPhone 5, which should be a major game changer given Apple’s usual product cycles.