Should I buy an iPhone?

I don’t own an iPhone – never have. In fact I’ve never purchased any Apple product. I get the distinct impression that they are simple not designed for me. They’re for normal people. Even when I think I should buy one of their products just to see what I’m missing out on I can’t bring myself to do it. It would be too embarrassing. I may as well go and but a T-shirt with “Apple Fanboy” written in large letters (though elegant and with just the right amount of whitespace). I even get embarrassed for other people when I see them using Apple products. I feel like I should take them aside and explain to them politely how they’ve been deluded into buying an overpriced, under-performing an ultimately unsatisfying product.

When I was living down-under Apple products were popular and I occasionally got to work with a developer who was a die-hard Apple fan. It was amusing, the rest of us would snigger at their misguided judgement and their uncanny ability to compare everything with the wonderful nirvana of the Apple Universe.

Now I live in New York. The Big Apple. I work for a tech company that embraces Apple products. Not just the hippy UX crew either. Even the management, strong willed , hard-core professionals, have Mac books and iPhones littered on their desk next to their Apple branded widescreens. I could be wrong but I believe the standard company issued laptop is a Mac book of some description (probably the big screen one with the ridiculous overheating issue?).

I’m currently working with a UX designer who comes to meetings with his iPad. Do I scream at him, telling him his ridiculously oversized iPhone is a 10 year old Slate device that lacks the fidelity that a stylus offered? No. Do I laugh when he starts describing how our new app is going to require a PopOver control – much more that just a PopUp? No. When he rounds every sharp angle and removes the right click? No.

Why not? Because maybe, just maybe the time has come for me to face the music. It’s me. It just must be me.

So what now… where to from here? So its finally come to this… should I just go and buy an iPhone 4?

I’d have some reasonable excuses:

  • My current US “cell” phone is a Blackberry – highly functional but about as exciting and attractive as a brick
  • The iPhone 4 is only $199 dollars – the last two phones I purchased cost around $700 each -  so they’re cheap!
  • There are lots fun accessories (including an iPhone 4 case to protect) that I can buy with the money I saved.

Of course there are also some arguments against:

  • New York seems to have the worst phone coverage of any major city I’ve been to in recent times (OK I don’t get around much and yes I understand tall buildings and ultra high density population doesn’t help). I’ve tried AT&T and T-Mobile networks and both have frequent drop-outs/interference. I believe they are just introducing 4G networks but currently browsing and live video streaming on the existing 3G network is terrible. I believe the iPhones are fixed to AT&T?
  • I can’t write programs for my new iPhone unless I buy an Apple computer. Worse still, I can’t just buy the computer and waste the OS to install Windows 7, I actually have to run OSX. [I’m guessing a bit here]. Now things are getting expensive – and I just don’t think I’m ready for such a big step into this hostile world.

So should I buy an iPhone 4? Comments welcome – maybe even a free phone accessory giveaway for the most amusing comment?


Just for the record, here’s the fine print:

  1. I’ve used many Apple products – some by choice, some mandated.
  2. I haven’t enjoyed any of these experiences.
  3. I realised this is largely based on my own prejudice that I’ve accumulated over the years from those experiences.
  4. I recognize that the vast majority of Apple product owners consider the experience satisfying as voted by their continued purchases.