Why I'm not a platform loyalist

Published: August 10, 2014

 

Being in the position that I’m in, I have a lot of friends and family come to me for advice when it comes to choosing a new phone. I think a lot of them end up walking away surprised because they expect to be told to get an iPhone or a “Droid” (which really means an Android phone, which really means a Samsung Galaxy whatever-is-hot-right-now). If it’s their first time asking me, most of them aren’t prepared for me to lay out all of the options in front of them, which means all platforms, all manufacturers, and all price ranges, because contrary to popular belief smartphones are not (and never will be) a one size fits all situation.

 

I have been pegged as an Android loyalist. I have been pegged as an iPhone loyalist. I have been pegged as a Windows Phone loyalist. I have (once upon a time) been pegged as a BlackBerry loyalist. All of these are true statements. At one point or another, I have been aboard the Android train, the iPhone train, the Windows Phone train, and the BlackBerry train. My problem isn’t that I only stick to one platform and one alone; my problem is that I can’t stick to just one. I hop around quite frequently, but the truth is I like it that way. I feel like there’s a very good reason to do so.

 

That reason is because these platforms are changing all of the time. In my opinion, Android has grown exponentially from the buggy, laggy, force-close-y software that it was just a few short years ago. It went from awkward teenage years to blossoming young adult. iOS is no longer the hip young CEO with budding ideas - it’s the middle-aged CEO that relies on its old ideas to keep it afloat for a few more years. Windows Phone is no longer the lowly entry-level employee with hopes of climbing its way up the company ladder; with decidedly less hope, Windows Phone still makes progress in middle management these days, and is pretty satisfied that at least they’re moving up. BlackBerry is... well, I don’t know how to fit BlackBerry into this. Perhaps the person in the room who has good ideas, but is always overshadowed by bigger and better ideas. Sorry, BlackBerry.

 

But even then, things are always subject to change. How things are right now are not how things will always be. Maybe Android finally got that Bachelor’s Degree, but the slumpy job market put them in a fast food job to get by. Maybe iOS finally got that second wind to come up with something truly remarkable. Maybe Windows Phone never will be able to make it past middle management on merit alone, but got lucky enough to win the innovation lottery one day. And maybe, just maybe, somebody - somewhere - will notice BlackBerry’s efforts.

 

You never know when the tables might turn in this industry. Weird, new features and innovations pop up all the time. They’re not always game-changing, but sometimes you get something that comes along that makes a switch worthwhile. Android finally stabilized, which meant I could switch from iOS to Android without feeling regret. Windows Phone is finally starting to pick up with the introduction of Cortana and other features that probably should have been introduced a long time ago. And, despite BlackBerry 10 being described mostly as a flop, it’s still worth checking out in my opinion if you’re open to whatever is out there - especially because you can run any Android application on BlackBerry 10 devices, which is pretty cool.

 

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with loyalists, either, as long as they’re not offensive about it. You know the typical taunts, we don’t need to go through them here. All I have to say to that is:

 

 

But the ones who are just genuinely interested in the progression of a single platform are good too, because it’s nice to just know what works for you. As for me, my preferences on mobile platforms just change like the weather, and it’s okay.

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