Its really about quality over quantity. No doubt the new HP with 50 trillion GBs of hard drive space, 20 billion GB of RAM and 500 USB slots is half the price of th 11-inch Macbook Air but what does that even mean? Of course Apple has marketed its share of dual core x processors but it seems that its competitors thrive on this technical jargon. What frustrates me about most non-Apple devices is that their technical features don’t seem to work. I mean the newest Windows 8 machine still takes 2 minutes to load Microsoft Word, what’s up with that? Where the hell is that 30 billion GB of RAM I paid for?
I used to work at the Apple Store and I would often have people ask me to compare the iPad with the latest Android tablet that has 2 USB slots, an HDMI connection and place for an external memory card. Firstly, how often are you going to use those connections, and secondly, let me give you a tour of Apple’s bubble of happiness. It’s true – Apple restricts your freedoms, asks you to pay £50 to connect your iPad to the TV and takes away your fundamental right to the weather app on your home page but GOD it does it well.
It gives you a seamless (ish) experience with an ecosystem and features that actually work. Sure you can share your music library on your PC, phone and tablet with windows and android but not without 2 3rd party softwares, 3 hours and a headache. With Apple its called Home Sharing – built into all its devices, including the Apple TV.
I’ll give you another example, maybe a bit old but still lives on today, a classic. Once upon a time in a world without airplay wireless music technology came to Apple devices with a plug sized device called the airport express. A masterpiece of design and what a great device – make any speaker wireless and play music from any of your devices. An example of the PC alternative was the squeezebox which required a specific piece of logitech hardware, extra software to install and a poor interface for browsing. It lives on with a new mobile app.
Its great that Apple thinks about the details; what does the average user need his or her technology to do. It creates this wonderful relationship between people and technology.
I’ll give you one more example – very recent. It’s my favourite and features album art. I mean how annoying are the grey empty boxes in your library. With image and grid based layouts being the new thing, your smartphone music library without album art looks ugly. But the new Windows phone just doesn’t care despite the fact that it chose a pretty grid based layout as its main aesthetic feature. iOS 7 cares. I noticed because now when I browse my artists, I don’t have an image of the album but an image of the artist that I suppose has been gathered from the iTunes database.
Its the little things that count. I’m stuck in the bubble, but definitely for good reason.