What is the best combination of platforms to use?

Evan Selleck
Contributing Editor from  Arizona
| August 15, 2013

A friend of mine talks about phones a lot. Which makes sense, because he works in the phone industry, so he likes to talk about it. And, considering my love for the industry and my own job, I'm happy to oblige him. Recently, the conversations I've been having with him have revolved around him "getting bored." He wants something new, but he just doesn't know what to switch to. He is tired of using the same thing month-in and month-out, and he's ready to jump ship to try something else.

I can say that I know where he's coming from. I know what it's like to get bored with a phone, after all. I'd probably lose my mind if I weren't able to switch between one device to another, or one platform to another. I get the itch to use something like Windows Phone, so I'll drop my daily driver and switch over for as long as I can. I know I won't stay on it forever, no matter how much I like it, and so I keep an eye out for something else that might hold my attention.

It's not hard for a phone to hold my attention, especially if it's something new. I love to play around with new phones. The trouble comes in the fact that many new phones, especially devices that are just showing off new hardware, are running familiar software. Like, for instance, with the Galaxy Note III. I fully expect that device to have some new software features inside of it, but for the most part it will be the same TouchWiz that I used on the Galaxy S 4. So, while I'm getting new hardware, the part that I actually interact with every day will be just like what I've already used.

That's why iOS got so long-in-the-tooth over the years. Despite the fact that Apple was throwing new features in there, people had been using the same software for way too long. Minor tweaks in the aesthetics, as we had seen in iOS 6 and prior, weren't enough. I think that's one reason why people look forward to major upgrades in Android so much. I think with Android 5.0 (Key Lime Pie), people are expecting Android to get a big face lift again.

That's why I need to change it up.

I finally ended up keeping an iPad Mini, mainly for my daughters. But I do use it from time to time (even with that display), and so I take that as my dosage of iOS. I need iOS for some apps that I sync with my computer, and vice versa, so I can't get rid of it entirely. However, that doesn't mean that I need to have only iOS-based devices. I can mix it up. And that's something I've found I need to do to keep the boredom at bay.

That's why I want to know from you which combination you think is best. And you don't have to use iOS as your tablet, either -- that's just what I use. If you think that a Windows RT/8-based tablet, plus an Android phone is the best combination, let me know. I'm just curious to know if you spice things up in your household, too, or if you let one platform rule the experience.

Now, don't get me wrong, I understand why you'd want all those devices to be running the same OS: compatibility. And that's great. But, I can find a way around that, one way or another, so having that in my house isn't all that essential.

So, tell me, what do you think is the best combination of devices? Is running an iPad Mini with a Nokia Lumia 920 the best combo? Or, is a Nexus 7 (2013) with an iPhone 5 the best way to go about it? Let me know what you think!