Tuesday, February 17, 2015

I switched back to an iPhone... again.

You can go through the archives of this site of mine and find that, through the years, I've changed my mind quite a bit. Particularly on phones. My first smartphone was an iPhone 3G. After I had gotten angry at the slowness of said 3G, I decided to make a bold move and just switch over to Windows Phone, and purchased a Samsung Focus on Amazon for a penny. At the time, it was the current generation Windows Phone, it's just no one was buying them so they lowered the price, and for the first couple months, I couldn't understand why no one gave Windows Phone a chance. I still believe that Windows Phone is the most stable mobile OS out there; apps just don't crash, and the device never slows down. Fluid animations every time you enter or leave an app. It was great in a design point of view, but there were a very limited selections of apps. While everyone had Instagram and Draw Something, I had Angry Sharks and other alternatives to games and social networks. I got used to seeing the "no apps found" message while trying to search for something in the Marketplace. Angry, again, I switched back to an iPhone, this time a 3GS. By this time, the 3GS was beginning to show its age, and I was beginning to be annoyed by it. So I made another bold choice, and switched back to Windows Phone with a Nokia Lumia 920. I said "I don't need apps, I need a great device with design and user experience in mind." Not that I was wrong about some of what I said, but I frequently peaked over the fence to see that the iPhone still had apps that just didn't show up on Windows Phone. The only thing I could really brag about was the camera, which even by today's standards is fantastic. Luckily I still had my old 3GS if I really needed to use Snapchat or whatever I didn't have, until Rudy Hyun came along and brought over some fantastic third-party apps so us poor, desperate Windows Phone users could finally have access to Instagram, Vine, and Snapchat, in a really well designed app. It was great! Then after my replacement 920 started to crap out, AT&T graciously sent me a free Lumia 1520 with a two-year contract, of course. Now I had an even better camera, a better screen, and some of the apps. But I became unhappy, again, with Windows Phone. I had the Windows Phone 8.1 preview, so I had Cortana, and other stuff, but it just felt that Microsoft was slacking. They were making promises that things would get better with Windows Phone 10, but that didn't help today. So I decided, coincidentally around the same time as Ed Bott on ZDNet, that I was done. I was tired of being a guinea pig on a platform that no one else seemed to care about. I went to Best Buy and bought myself a Motorola Moto G 2014. I read reviews online that said it didn't feel like a budget smartphone, and that is was fast. I fell for it, and for a couple months, I was an Android guy. Now I don't know what these people classify "fast" as, but this thing was far from fast. The phone froze up CONSTANTLY. I had been used to waiting a second or two from my older phones, but this thing would more often than not take over 15 seconds to reload the fucking home screen. And it's not like I had a shitload of widgets, just a clock, and news and weather widget, and a bunch of folders. Not to mention if you kept apps open in the background, the whole thing would slow right down. What pissed me off to no end was when I was driving with the GPS on, and music playing. It simply couldn't do those two things at the same time. Music would stop playing, so I'd leave the Maps app, and reopen music. Then it seemed I was waiting an abnormal amount of time for some direction to be given to me, so I reopen the Maps app, and IT FORGOT THAT I SET A DESTINATION. There's nothing better than going 50 MPH and fighting with a phone that just doesn't want to work. I had the phone for maybe two or three months, and already I hated it. So for my sanity, I saved up money from work, and from Christmas and my birthday, and paid the price for a gold iPhone 6 Plus 64 GB. Sure, it cost almost as much as my Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro when it was brand new because I bought it unlocked, but goddamn it, it was worth it.

I can't tell you how much I don't think about using the iPhone. It just works. I do miss some things from Android and Windows Phone, like the keyboard shortcuts without needing to open a second menu, and the dedicated back button, plus the fact that iOS still feels a bit stale, but it just works. And to my surprise, iTunes has gotten a lot better. It's not great, and I'd much rather drag-and-drop in an Explorer window, but it gets the job done. Maybe sometime down the line I'll go back to Windows Phone, but for now, life's pretty good right now. I have a phone that can handle playing music and telling me which turn to take, and I don't feel like smashing it on the ground every time I use it.

Oh, and for a brief time I tried using a Mac. My reactions to it are similar to LinusTechTips: it's oddly harder to use, and it's on par to the performance of Windows 8. In fact, a lot of animations and other system tasks take longer on a Mac. So, I'm a PC.

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