Today I switched from an iPhone to android. In the process, I learned a lot about how Apple is using gadgets to control your mind.
I’ve been with Apple since the beginning. The first computer I ever used was an Apple IIe. The first phone I ever had was an iPhone 3G. And I’ve always loved them as products, especially because of the control they afforded over my life and my data.
Apple’s products are designed to keep you within their walled garden. They want to keep your data on their servers, so they can mine it for advertising revenue and use it to sell you more stuff. They want you to be locked into their ecosystem, so they can make money off of you in every possible way (including charging you a fortune for “cloud” storage). If you’re using iCloud, and you need to move your photos from one device to another, you need to pay them money. If you switch from Apple Music to Spotify, or from Gmail to Outlook, good luck getting everything moved over without spending hours doing it manually–or paying someone else money to do it for you.$
And then there’s the whole business model around buying new stuff every year–or worse yet, buying new phones every two years–that are basically
I was a Mac user for years. I used a Mac because it was the only platform that had good image editing software, and as a photographer I needed that. But then Google improved Android to the point where it’s now the best mobile operating system, and Samsung improved Android phones to the point where they are now better than the iPhone. So I switched to Android.
You’d think this would be difficult since I had been an Apple customer for years, but it wasn’t. My only serious complaint with my previous Android phone was that it didn’t have enough RAM, so switching from an iPhone 6 to a Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge was easy. In fact, it’s hard to imagine how anyone could have made switching easier, short of paying me to do it.
Part of the reason is that hardware is easy to switch: all you have to do is copy your data over. And part of the reason is that software has become so good on both platforms that there isn’t much difference between them anymore. But most of the reason is that Google seems determined to eliminate any friction involved in switching from one platform to another. That’s good, because friction tends to prevent people from switching even when they want to.
I’ve been an iPhone user for many years. And I’ve been a Mac user for most of my life. But I’m switching to Android. Why?
I love Apple’s products, and I don’t want to switch to Android. But here’s the thing: Apple has become boring. They’re no longer producing new types of devices that wow me. The iPhone has become the new BlackBerry: it’s an appliance, not a device with personality or soul. And the iPad is just a big iPhone without the phone part.
As for their computers, I have a 2011 MacBook Pro which is starting to fail on me, and their new designs are just unattractive. Laptops have gotten thinner and lighter over time (which is good), but they have also lost most of their personality and individuality, becoming “just another laptop”. I’m not going to run out and buy one of these new MacBooks because there’s nothing exciting about them. And they’re still too expensive given the quality you get.
I recently bought a cheap $200 Chromebook and it’s actually a pretty nice machine. I can’t run all the apps I’m used to on it, but it has its own apps–and they’re good enough for my purposes right now (more on
I’ve been using an iPhone as my primary mobile phone for the last four years, but recently I made a switch to an Android device. I thought it would be helpful to share my reasons for making the move and how my experience has gone so far.
I was a long-time Apple user and had owned every model of iPhone since the 3G. I’d also owned several Macs over the years and was generally very happy with Apple’s products. However, as time went on several things started chipping away at my loyalty to Apple.
First, there is the recurring frustration that comes from using any closed, proprietary system. I like having full control over my computer and knowing exactly what is going on under the hood. That level of insight and control is simply impossible with any modern Apple product.
Second, I’ve always been more interested in gadgets than in software or services; the hardware itself is what excites me most. What Apple has done with the iPhone is essentially create a high-end appliance that works great out-of-the-box but can’t be modified or improved in any way by its owner. If you want something a little different – say, better battery life – too bad; you’re stuck with what they give you.
In the last few months I switched from an iPhone to a Samsung Galaxy Nexus. This is not the first time I’ve made such a switch (the last was in August 2007), nor will it be the last.
The reason for the change was simple: Google’s products are better than Apple’s. In particular, Maps, Drive and Search are far, far better on Android than they are on iPhone. Drive is a godsend for anyone who does any writing, and Maps is just plain better than Apple’s version. Google Now is also brilliant.
In previous years being on iOS was a great advantage for my wife and me because it meant we could share calendars and have them sync automatically to both our phones. This time around I managed to sign up my wife for a G+ account and set up local syncing on our Macs (using Spanning Sync), so we haven’t lost that advantage.
I’m sure I’ll switch back to iOS at some point. But I don’t think it will be because Google’s products get worse; I think it will be because Apple’s get better. Most of what we want out of our phones today is related to services like maps and search, where Apple has fallen behind its competitors (both in terms of quality of
This week, I switched from an iPhone to an Android phone.
It’s been a few days, and I already love it.
Why did I switch? The new Android phones are better than the old iPhones.
The two most important new features for me were:
1) There is more room for apps on the homescreen. On the iPhone, you can only fit 4 rows of apps on each screen (not including the permanent dock across the bottom). I was constantly scrolling left and right to find an app, and it took too long to find it or even see what was there. The new Android phones have 5 rows of apps per screen (including a permanent dock across the bottom), which is just easier to use;
2) The Android phone has better voice recognition. One of my favorite features on smartphones is voice recognition software that converts speech into text. It saves time, lets you keep your eyes on what’s in front of you, and reduces typing errors. (At least in theory; I know that in practice it often produces errors.) But so far, all voice recognition software has been terrible at recognizing names. For example, if someone tells me their name is “Catherine” but my phone hears “N
I was at dinner the other night and we were talking about technology. I explained that if I had to use a Windows PC or an Android tablet or phone, I would be very unhappy.
I have met many people who use Windows machines at work but switch to Macs at home. I know several people who love their iPads, but wish they could buy an Android tablet because they find it more powerful and flexible.
Apple’s market share is growing — according to comScore, it grew 7 percent over the past year — but most people don’t use iPhones or Macs (it’s not even clear that most people who use Apple products actually like them).
The reason Apple’s market share is growing is not because more people want to use Apple products, but because Apple has been making its products more like Android and Windows tablets. In other words, the more you make your product like everybody else’s, the larger your market share becomes.
This was illustrated for me when my friend in London showed me her new Amazon Kindle Fire tablet computer. She loved it. It does everything she wants a computer to do: browse the web, watch videos, take photos, read books and magazines. And the user interface is very simple; her 85-year-old mother can