A long awaited reckoning

by octopushat


Well, here goes nothing.

I’m about to break the seal on a iPhone 6, but I’m not really sure if I want to.

I’ve never owned an iPhone, instead I’ve been a dedicated follower of Google’s Android platform for over six years. I actually took a day off work to stand in line at a T-Mobile store for the release of the G1 – the very first Android phone. Every year or so since I’ve weighed the costs and benefits of switching to the iPhone camp, but one thing after another has kept me loyal to Google’s excellent mobile OS and (generally) great hardware.

A couple of weeks ago, my trusty Nexus 4 (easily the best Android phone I’d owned after the G1 and G2) took a dramatic plunge from my hand and bounced off the bar at the Eagle Rock Brewery tasting room and into the full rinse sink. It made a hilarious noise. Lucky for me, the man behind the bar that afternoon had the reflexes of a tooled-up mongoose and he snatched the phone from the depths before any permanent damage could occur. It was still functional when he pulled it out, and I quickly powered it down and left it to dry in a bag of rice for a couple of days. It’s been going strong since. While the phone is showing its age a bit, the promise of Android’s next version being available in a few weeks means there may yet still be useful life in the Nexus.

But before I knew if it would survive, I ordered a new iPhone 6. That phone arrived today and all my debate and dissention and indecisiveness about the whole iOS v. Android question has become less theoretical and more of a real (and real expensive) decision.

I really like Android. I like the control it affords the user (even though I’ve never taken full advantage of rooting or installing different ROMs). I like the close ties to the Google ecosystem (where I live). I like the little things like NFS file transfers and the notification bar. I loath the shitty camera, but I have a killer work-around — my Wi-Fi enabled digital camera allows me to transfer photos to the phone to share instantly. iOS represents a learning curve and discomfort.

But I’ve been told for half a decade how wonderful and amazing and, indeed “life changing” the iPhone is. It’s routinely recommended as the best in mobile tech. If I eschew all that to remain faithful to Android, isn’t that just blind faith?

The time has come to give the iPhone a fair shot, so I’m going to give it until January 1st, comfortable knowing I’ll be able to resell the iPhone 6 for most of what I paid for it if I decide to return to Android’s welcoming arms. Maybe I’ll write about the transition here. Maybe I’ve blown this whole thing out of proportion and it actually isn’t a big deal what phone is in my pocket.