iphone_articleI’m an iPhone 3GS owner. My iPhone is my first Apple product and my first phone with a data plan. When I purchased it in November 2009, it was undoubtedly the best phone on the market; things have changed. Hardware-wise, the iPhone 4 is in the top of its class. While I believe the iPhone is a good phone for most people, there are a number of reasons why it’s no longer for me:

  1. Video Codec Support. Apple is particularly bad about supported video codecs. It’s clear why they restrict video codec playback: to encourage purchases from their iTunes store and protect their digital rights management (DRM). You can obviously use a program like Handbrake to manually convert videos (or even automate the process), but it’s a hassle that can easily be avoided. I would like really like a VLC-like app on my mobile device and not have my phone manufacturer pull it from their app store.
  2. iTunes. Being forced to use iTunes was my biggest hesitation purchasing my iPhone in the first place; unfortunately, the issues with iTunes are still an unsolved. iTunes is slow, it can’t monitor folders, updates are a hassle with Apple trying to include added junk software, the distinction between Artist and Album Artist tag is nonsense. When I mention my gripe with iTunes to others, they don’t understand; however, most of them never used anything besides iTunes. I firmly believe Mp3 organization should exist at the file-level, independent from any software cheap inflatable toys.
  3. Better Technology on the Market. Let’s face it: the phone market has become simply too large for the other two software giants (Microsoft, Google) to sit idle. These are companies driven to succeed in one of the fastest growing markets, with the dollars to back their commitment. In a little over a year’s time, they developed an extremely competitive software platform and partnered with some of the biggest (and most dedicated) consumer electronics manufacturers. They’ve given the consumer something Apple has not: “choice.” I find my iPhone 3GS painfully slow running the newest iOS 4, and the most recent apps. In order to get 2-years out of my next phone, I want it to have the latest and greatest hardware. Let’s compare the specifications between Apple’s best offering and the competition:
    Apple Android Windows Phone
    Phone iPhone 4 LG Optimus 2X HTC HD2
    Processor Apple A4, 1000 Mhz Dual-core, 1000 MHz 1000 Mhz
    Graphics PowerVR SGX535 Tegra 2
    Display Resolution 640 x 960, 3.5″ 480 x 800 pixels, 4″ 480 x 800 pixels, 4.3″
    Battery 1420 mAh, 7 hours talk-time, 300 hours standby 1500 mAh, 7.83 hours talk-time, 400 hours standby 1230 mAh, 5.3 hours talk-time, 320 hours standby
    Storage 32 GB internal 8 GB internal, 32 GB expansion 16 GB internal
    Front-facing Camera Yes Yes No
    Notable features Face-time HDMI output Kickstand

    The best Windows Phone offering doesn’t hold up to the best Android and Apple phones. While the iPhone has the highest resolution screen of any phone available, I would still prefer a larger area to take advantage of those pixel, despite what Steve Jobs may say. The LG Optimus 2x undoubtedly “out-specs” the iPhone 4.

  4. The App Store. I think the App Store is probably one of iPhone’s greatest innovations. It’s been duplicated on every other phone platform, and soon on our computers. My issue is with the App Store’s review process and iPhone’s restriction to a single software source. No one has the right to tell me what I can and cannot do with my hardware. I shouldn’t have to jailbreak my device to make it do what I need it to (though I did it anyway). Of course, every time I update or sync with iTunes, I lose all my unapproved apps. While other platform’s official app stores have a review process, they support multiple app stores, which opens the doors for all apps.
  5. Slow Design Cycles; Slow to Adopt New Technology. How many times have you heard, “I’m waiting for the new iPhone to come out before upgrading?” Everyone knows June is that magical time of year when the latest and greatest iPhone gets announced. With the exception of the iPhone 4, the changes to the iPhone have been too incremental, even when vastly superior components existed on the market. This point is probably the most arguable, but new hardware once a year is simply not enough.

This year should bring some interesting changes in the phone market. I certainly hope Apple will open up to developers, app stores, codec support, and make a major overhaul to iTunes; if they do not, my next phone won’t be an iPhone.

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One Response to “5 Reasons Why My Next Phone Won’t be an iPhone”  

  1. 1 Grant Pitel

    So far, Apple has always stayed one step ahead of its phone competition. But as history has shown, its single-minded approach, will cause Apple to falter in the long run.

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