Apple or Android – I’ve used both

The GERD loves a good discussion amongst those who disagree (read: argument), as long as it’s done with respect to all involved (that leaves out Politics!).  Few subjects inspire such a heated discussion as Apple versus Android.  “I have an iPhone, I have a Droid“, how about having a cool drink and sitting in the shade for a moment!

For the purpose of simplicity, let’s limit this discussion to media devices and phones. Having used the iPhone, the HTC EVO, iPads, and Ice Cream Sandwich-equipped tablets, allow me to say something very pithy, very wise, very GERD-like.  What’s the big deal? (sounds very Jeffersonian, doesn’t it?)  As is almost always the case, it comes down to what YOU like best.  Apple is a very mature system.  For phones and tablets the operating system (iOS 5, soon to be iOS 6) works very well.  Apple’s innovative App Store is a terrific place to find tested and approved applications that are low cost and, in most cases, very useful.  Updating the operating system is effortless, as is updating the apps.  iTunes is great – music and movies and TV shows (oh my!).  Apple set the standard that everyone else is trying to copy (sorry Samsung, didn’t mean to use the word “copy“).

I’ve used Apple products, iPods mostly, since 2003.  In the last few years I’ve graduated to iPads, iPhones, and my Apple Mini (a superb mid-level computer).  I like Apple products – some may call me a “fanboy” (term used to describe “a passionate advocate and promoter for Apple operating systems and hardware”), but I like things that work.

But wait, I also used the HTC EVO for 2 years, and liked it!  I have and use the Asus EEE Pad TF-101 (I love the optional docking keyboard – I wish Apple made one for the iPad).  I have a Samsung Galaxy Player (the big 5″ one), and it’s a great media device.

While Apple may be compared to a buttoned-down solid-colored shirt that looks great with a striped tie, Android is that comfortable pull over that looks really cool with jeans and an old pair of sneakers.  You have to work a little harder with Android devices – updating is not easy.  The Google Play Store has matured in look and content.  However, you can find, shall we say, suspicious-looking apps (“Pocket Girlfriend”? Really?).  If that’s what you want, oh well.

Bottom line: For media players and phones, the inexperienced user should stick with the Apple iPhone and iPods.  They are easier to use, update, and understand.  A drawback is that any song purchased on iTunes is in a protected format (AAC) that only works on Apple devices.  You can convert them to MP3 format, but not easily.  However, if you stick with those Apple devices, you’ll have no worries.  If you are more experienced, or more adventurous, you can be very happy with an Android phone and/or media device.  As I have already said, it comes down to what YOU like best.  After all, we still live in a semi-free country!

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