Not everyone knows this, but browsing the web in Safari can be hazardous to your health. It’s not Safari’s fault. Almost any browser will have the same impact whereby reading a certain kind of article can catch your hair on fire.
Here’s a good example. Mike Murphy writing for Quartz absolutely positively cannot figure out exactly “why everyone buys Apple and Samsung.” Now, you and I both know that’s not true. It may seem like it. But it’s not a truth or a fact or even an alternate fact. It’s a stretch, an exaggeration, but not true in the true sense that facts are true. Unless they’re someone else’s facts, which in this case is what Murphy is talking about.
You see, some in the technology industry have equivalence problems, and it’s just not covered under most healthcare plans, so people just continue to suffer throughout their adult lives. Murphy on OnePlus, a small Chinese smartphone maker. In China. Not a place where small Chinese make phones:
They’ve been hundreds of dollars cheaper than similar models from Apple, Samsung, Google, or HTC, with nearly the same level of build and camera quality.
Most of us don’t buy a smartphone based on just the hardware, but that’s all these technology reviewers afflicted with equivalence problems can talk about. The way I see it is this; smartphones are made up of 1) hardware, 2) software, 3) brand, 4) ecosystem, 5) total cost of ownership, 6) humans I can talk to when something goes wrong, and 7) maybe a few other associated but valuable considerations.
Murphy doesn’t get why most smartphone owners settle for Samsung Galaxy-whatevers or Apple iPhones because there are different smartphones, some are very good, a few have better cameras, others are priced at half or less than their premium cousins. So, why isn’t the world of smartphone owners beating a path to their doors?
Back to my list, at least numbers one through six.
All hardware is not the same, but unlike the Samsung Galaxy Note 7, iPhones don’t seem to be banned by airlines as flammable devices. #2, Apple’s software and restrictions on the App Store are more private and secure than Android’s, even if many of the applications are the same. #3, Apple’s brand seems more sound than HTC (struggling financially), Samsung (they make washers and dryers and copiers, too), OnePlus (who?), and others. #4, Apple’s ecosystem makes apps and devices work better together; Mac, iPhone, iPad, Watch, et al. #5, have you seen what you can get for a used iPhone? It’s like using a good phone for free. #6, Apple has a store with support, service, somebody to help who also speaks your language.
After trudging through mountainous comparisons between devices, it all boils down to Murphy’s summary (but without any of the considerations on my list):
The OnePlus 5 starts at $479, which is a fair bit cheaper than the $649 that the iPhone 7 and or Google Pixel start at, but with OnePlus’ new phone, you really are getting what you paid for. Still a great phone, just one that doesn’t quite hit the heights of its competitors.
Hello? Software? Ecosystem? Usability? Service? Resale value? People actually consider those when they buy a new smartphone.
The reality is this. Not everyone buys smartphones from Apple or Samsung but it doesn’t matter. Other manufacturers don’t make much money so they won’t be around much longer. Add that to the total cost of ownership.