Manufacturers, stop comparing devices to Apple's

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| September 6, 2012

Next week, in less than seven days, Apple is going to take the stage and unveil the next iPhone. The rest of the world is going to watch, hold their breath, and then the preorders are going to go crazy. Later this month, when the phone actually goes on sale, it's going to sell a lot of units. We'll probably see the shipments move back a couple of weeks, if not more. It'll be pandemonium. Like it is every year, since 2007.

The new iPhone, probably called iPhone 5, is going to be a big hit. Even if Apple has already unveiled the new software that's going to be installed on the device, the new device will be all the talk for quite some time. It's just the natural order of things these days.

Even if you hate Apple, or the iPhone, or iOS, there's no denying that it sells. Okay, so, we have publicized this obvious truth. We got that out of the way.

Now, let's talk about everyone else. Last month (hard to believe it's already last month) I asked you whether or not you think it matters when another company, like Nokia or Motorola, or even HTC, announces a new device. This being relative to when Apple is announcing a new device. Is it better to be before, or after?

During Motorola's event yesterday, the company didn't hide the fact that they were readily comparing their new devices to the iPhone 4S. They went out of their way to compare the devices, actually. I commented on Twitter that I found this odd, considering the iPhone 4S is almost a year old. And, well, it's about to be replaced by a new model.

Of course, people pointed out that the iPhone 4S sold a ridiculous amount of handsets (that obvious truth we got out of the way earlier), so why wouldn't Motorola compare their new devices to it? I won't argue that that makes sense in this industry, because comparing your new device to the top-selling competitor and showcasing why you think it's better makes sense. You are trying to sell the device, after all.

But, here's a crazy idea. Why not compare your brand spanking new device to . . . Nothing? No other device. Instead of going up on stage to talk about the display and saying anything about any other device's display, why not just talk up your own hard work?

To me, honestly, going on stage and saying, "Hey, ours is better than that other company's because we did this!" basically translates to, "We love our stuff, and we think it's awesome because we made it, so you should to!."

Apple cracks jokes about other companies. Makes sarcastic comments. But those who have been tasked with showing new hardware or software never go up on stage and start pointing out what other companies are doing, and how Apple is doing it better. Instead, they just tell you what their product is, what it does, and how it's better in a general sense.

Yes, this usually translates to more information skewed by the reality distortion field, but it is what it is.

When Apple showcased the Retina display, they didn't go out of their way to individually pick out other companies using other display technology. They focused on outlining why their Retina display was the best option for display technology in general. Focusing in on HTC or Samsung for using AMOLED would be pointless.

Just show your technology, your design, your implementation, or whatever else you are showing off, and weigh it against its own merits. Wow me with using top-tier hardware or software, and show it *working*. Not some video demo, or pre-rendered images. No, just show me what it does, how it looks, and then let the rest fall into place.

As I said earlier, I understand that in our favorite industry comparing devices isn't going to stop. I wish that weren't the case, but I know that's just how it is. If there is anything I want to get across, this is it:

Manufacturers, do not go on stage at your own event and compare your device to an Apple product. Why? Because everyone you invited to that particular event, and anyone out there who might have an avenue to do it who wasn't at the event, is going to compare it to an Apple product anyway. Unfortunately, they might not have the same results as you.