Confessions of a Mobile Phone Agnostic

Let me preface this post by stating, for the record, that I believe an individual should pick the right mobile product for the job, regardless of the mobile product’s brand. As it turns out, this is not always how the real world works.

In today’s world of rapid mobile consumerism, trendy marketing, and six-month product cycles, a new breed of mobile consumer has emerged. This new consumer appears to be ensconced in product dogma, fierce brand loyalty, and a sense of elitism. This new consumer often gets referred to derogatorily as a “Fanboy.”

In 2007 Apple came out with the iPhone—arguably revolutionary and by many standards an instant success. Fan sites and blogs devoted to the iPhone sprung up all over the web. Seemingly overnight legions of these fans took to the Internet to espouse their love and loyalty for the iPhone. This naturally gave rise to an anti-iPhone contingent—a counter culture crowd that avoided following the herd. To my surprise I found myself among them. To give any praise to the iPhone was to risk being referred to as an iPhone Fanboy. Neutrality didn’t seem to be an option.

As a professional in the mobility industry I have access to many mobile products. There was a time I had a new mobile phone every other month. After trying many of these phones, I formed various likes and dislikes. I rarely felt any sense of loyalty or love from one phone to the next; after all, it was just a mobile phone. I didn’t understand the logic behind mobile phone “fanboyism.”

Studiously avoiding “fanboyism,” a year and a half would pass before I found myself using the iPhone on a daily basis. After a few days of use I began to wonder why I’d resisted for so long. The iPhone was sleek, easy to use, and quick. It did more than I thought I would ever want a mobile phone to do. If this phone was so great, why then was there so much scorn from non-iPhone users on the Internet? I could only conclude that the real elitism stemmed from the counter culture, anti-iPhone crowd, a crowd I could no longer count myself among.

I realized I needed to go back to my core beliefs and practice mobile agnosticism. I needed to stand behind the products that did the best job, regardless of brand. With this realization I could now stand behind my iPhone and know that my decision was based on having the right product for the job–not some trend or obsessive herd mentality.

I’m still on the lookout for the next best phone and have high hopes for Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 and Google’s Android mobile products. I have used both and both are compelling .Who knows? After the next six-month product cycle, it could be whole new ballgame.

What devices meet your business and personal needs?
What businesses and personal needs of yours aren’t currently being met?
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