Is it alright for me to prefer something different?

Written by
Joshua Holmes
Published on
September 29, 2014
Read time

I’ll start with full disclosure; I write this article on my MacBook Pro Retina 15″, sitting next to my iPhone 5 and iPad 4th gen. I’m a person who prefers Apple products. I prefer them for different reasons. The biggest reason is that the overall user experience is better. They sweat the small things and make sure their products work together better than any other combination.

And that’s fine, it is my opinion. It works for me. So why do I always feel villainised when I mention this? Why am I not allowed to be happy with my technological choices, but you are? I fully agree that there can be fanboys who will not alter their opinion or agree to something been good on the other side. But this occurs with all products and companies. Not just Apple.

It is as if Apple is the one company people have to hate. And if someone is positive of their products, they are instantly accused of being biased. If the same positivity was had towards any other product, they would be passed off as being a simple review.

But getting back to the actual problem, there are arguments to each side. I hate people who blindly love one thing over another for no reason- without even trying the other side. I have personally owned the same amount of Android phones as iPhones. And have used or owned every version of Windows since 95- including servers. I have used Linux desktops and servers. And I have used both Android tablets and iPads.
In my career, I have had to deal with problems and issues with a wide variety of devices running every conceivable type of software- desktops, laptops, phones, tablets, servers…. the list goes on.
So with all this experience behind me, I feel like I have some right to say that I truly believe Apple makes superior products in the ways I care about. Certainly not every way. No company makes any products which a more superior in every way.

Sony’s Z2 has an incredible battery.
Android is fantastically customisable.
Samsung creates and chucks in everything hoping it will work.
Windows Phone now has Cortana, which is a beautiful PA.
The LG G3’s screen is incredible.

But when I look at the rest of the features of each of these phones, I am underwhelmed.

Sony’s Z2 is fat and heavy.
Android is buggy and over developed on each phone.
Samsung chucks too much in. None of it is defined or works perfectly. TouchWiz is a joke.
Windows misses some basic features and looks overly complicated.
LG’s G3 has odd button placement and software bugs.

And then I look at my Apple products. Beautifully designed in every aspect. Overly simplified to the smallest proportions. A beautiful user interface. Technology that has been perfected over many years before being selected for inclusion in the latest revision.
But they have some downfalls. Not including some technology until after everyone else, under whelming customisation, odd design choices.

And it is these downfalls that ultimately makes them a better manufacturer. They care about the very end user. They over perfect before they realease. They don’t want to be the first, they want to be the best. Or at least the premium choice.

And on the same subject line, when an Apple product has an issue, it becomes huge news. Even if it affects very few. Look at “#bendgate”- 9 phones in 15 million have an issue and suddenly it is the worst thing in the world. And by association, if you like that particular model you suddenly have a new label.
But when Samsungs S5 did the same things, or there batteries exploded in the palms of peoples hands, it was looked at as a simple error that could be rectified.
Or look at when they gave away a free album. And everyone kicked up a fuss. You didn’t have to download it, you didn’t have to have ‘auto download’ on, you were given something for nothing.
But when Samsung does the same thing, it is hailed as great for all.
When Apple releases a software patch that goes awry, the hate starts flowing.
But when the same thing happens to Samsung, it is simply rectified and updated without too much fuss.

And most of the time, all this hate is directed at people who like these devices. The hate comes from people that don’t own them and therefore are not affected by it. So why do they feel the need to bring people down for something they have no reason to be involved in. Live and let live.

But I have gotten a little off track. The reason for this article is not to compare and contrast choices by different manufacturers. It is about why when I write what I have written, or say what I have said, and get labelled a fanboy or someone who just loves what I get told to. But as I have said, I am experienced in all facets, I am someone who has tested and believe I have found what works for me. And I sometimes want to talk about that. Just as those who believe the opposite always want to talk about why they love their products.

And I won’t shut down debate on that. In fact the opposite. I am the person who will strike a debate between products. I will often take the side of the hated or under dog. I like to hear what others have to say, even if I don’t agree with it.
I love that we all want different things. I love that companies get in a battles over supremacy. Because it pushes everything forward. It keeps the wheels of progress spinning.

So after all these arguments, after all is said and done, after the dust settles. Why do I have to feel bad to like what I like? Why can I only have an opinion if it is what other agree on. Even when the opinion does not affect those who feel so righteous about arguing against it. Why is my opinion and choice less valued simply because of a choice that at the end of the day doesn’t matter at all. It is a material object that will one day soon be pushed aside for another.

My plea to all. If someone has a differing opinion, try to understand it. Don’t hate them because of it. When it comes right down to it, that is the way we are. We like what we like for our own reasons. Enough said.

Headshot of Josh in black and white

Joshua Holmes

Josh is a product design leader based in Melbourne, Australia.
He has been working in the design space for 7 years across various industries.