Sunday, August 26, 2012

Android and iOS - It's a Personal Preference

I've been thinking a lot about devices running Google's Android operating system lately.

My long time readers shouldn't worry, I'm not planning a defection any time soon.  I'm still an Apple fan boy and I still very much love using Small, Medium, and Large; more commonly referred to as my iPhone 4S, iPad 3 (ok, ok, 'the new iPad', sheesh!!), and my 17-inch MacBook Pro.

So what's with all of this Android mind share then?  It just seems that everywhere I look, there is an Android powered something or someone is asking me about whether to get a Samsung or an iPhone. And then there are the technology blogs, newspapers, magazines, podcasts, and all the rest that are talking about Android. Oh, and let's not forget the little spat between Apple and Samsung that is going on right now.

But the truth is, and by 'truth' I'm really talking about my 'opinion' here, is that copied or not, there are a number of interesting things going on with mobile devices running Google's mobile OS.

A good friend was over last night with his Samsung Galaxy S II and was talking about all the things that he does with it: file sharing, document and email printing, game playing, interfacing with the computers at work, and yes, the obligatory email and web surfing.  Granted, that he is what many of you would call a 'computer geek' and did 'root' his phone, still, the enthusiasm was there.

About a week ago, a co-worker was asking me about whether or not to get an iPhone 4S or a Samsung Galaxy S III.  Connie has an iPad 2, and while she didn't specifically say, I'm willing to bet that her high school age or older children both have iPod touches or iPhones too.  The query came from a desire to have the 'best' phone.  Since we were sitting in a conference room helping ourselves to a free pizza lunch, the other people in the room chimed in on the conversation.  After about a 10 minute discussion, we all agreed that the phone from Samsung was a good phone, that there was an ability to reuse applications from the iPad on the iPhone, but at the end of the day, it came down to costs and not features or vendor lock-in.  She had American Express card reward points to use and they were offering a free AT&T Samsung Galaxy S III.  Not amount of marketing and jockeying for customer mind share can complete with 'free.'

And there was an article I was reading about the Samsung Galaxy Note for T-Mobile.  Anyone else seeing a trend developing here?  Anyway, I was intrigued about the Note.  The device is massive.  It measures in at 5.78 x 3.26 x 0.37 inches.  (Not that I'm thinking about it, the Galaxy S III is almost just as big at 5.38 x 2.78 x 0.34 inches.)

The interesting thing about this device is that it's what I'd call a 'tween' device.  It fits in between a smartphone and a 7-inch tablet like the Google Nexus 7.  Who knows if that category of device will take off or not.  I'm sure many people will want to use a device that size, but the question is are there enough people to make it a viable market or not.  Will have to stay tuned to find out.

The market has spoken and by and large, it's a two horse race: Apple's iOS and Google's Android.  The device you pick is your choice to make.  For me, iOS will be my mobile OS of choice.  There are a lot of good things happening with Android, and it is just as powerful and functional as iOS.
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