Tuesday, January 8, 2013

How smartphones are like spaghetti sauce

I have been thinking more about the "iphone vs android" debate.  I've watched a couple lengthy comparison reviews on YouTube that I think are at least pretty much balanced:

I have also seen others with S3's and happy to be using them.  Things I often hear from people using one or the other phone:
  • The iPhone 5 is amazingly tiny and light weight while very well made.  I myself have had 2 iphone 5's and an iphone 4 in one front jeans pocket at the same time when some family members requested I carry the phones for an event.  I also hear non-iphone 5 users complain that the iphone 5 feels like a toy.
  • The S3 has a much larger more usable screen vs that thing is huge and would not fit in my pocket and it feels to plastic-y and not as well made as the iphone 5.
  • With the S3 I can customize so many things to my hearts' delight and with IOS I am so limited.
  • The iPhone 5 does not wow on specs.  The S3 has much more up-to-date technical specs.
  • I love my S3 SD card slot vs I love not needing to worry about anything like an SD card.
  • I love my S3/android file system vs I love not having to worry about where files are  -- mostly they are in iCloud anyways.
  • I love being able to watch lots of different video types like .avi and .wmf vs what I want fits in the Apple universe and those other file types are full of viruses and I don't want them.
I am not saying that these things "are the truth".  I do believe they are true for the constituencies that have diverse wants and needs.  I am reminded of Malcolm Gladwell TED-talk about Spaghetti Sauce.  Companies tried to optimize and make THE spaghetti sauce.  Howard Schwartz (whom Malcolm Gladwell interviewed) found that there is no "THE spaghetti sauce".  People want different things, and having variety is necessary to make people happy sometimes.  Spaghetti sauce is one of those things.  Apparently sweetness of colas is another.  I believe smart phones are another.  People who like one or the other are right.  They do like what they like.  But that does not mean that is the right answer for everyone.

Also, people often do not know what they want and often cannot describe what they want accurately.

I am frankly surprised at how happy I am not wanting to care about the precise technical specifications. I have been in technology for more than 20 years, and have been fascinated by specific specifications (and still am in other areas) but am much less so on my smartphone.  I would never have guessed that that would be the case (and it feels wrong to say it as it is so counter-intuitive to me).