Our New Toys Have Arrived
My wife recently began having problem with her iPhone 3GS. It would shut off while connected to the Bluetooth system in our car, and the only way it would turn back on was if she plugged it in to a wall outlet. She’s on her phone a lot as part of her job, and without a reliable phone, she’s kinda SOL.
We’ve both had our 3GS’s for about three and a half years. They’ve slowed down quite a bit in that time (as app developers bloat memory and CPU requirements, no doubt). The battery life on mine has dropped to under 8 hours of normal use, and four hours of heavy use—which meant it was starting to spend more time attached to the wall than in my pocket… which kind of defeats the purpose of a mobile phone.
So this week, we finally bit the bullet, and upgraded to new iPhone 5’s for both of us.
So… iPhone 5. How very… droll and consumerist. What about Android? What about Windows Phones?
Well, I did look at the Samsung Galaxy S III. It was pretty. And fast. And large—too large for my wife’s small digits. But if it had been significantly cheaper than the iPhone 5, I might have been swayed. However, my wife likes the ‘just works’ aspect of iPhone, and we have a joint voice / unlimited data / messaging plan with AT&T that we were able to grandfather over from the 3GS that makes use of the iMessage ability that works really well for us. And as much as I’ve bitched about iTunes in the past, we both have our stuff set up now for what should be an easy transition. My wife has a significant amount of meta-data set up for music in iTunes (for her dance practices) that she also worried about losing. I realize that this is how Apple gets you and keeps you, and at some point, I will be their Pavlovian dog (if I’m not already), but I don’t really want to learn all about another phone operating system. I, too, just want it to work—which, from our experience, the iPhone does, most of the time.
As for Windows Phone… I just don’t see it as having legs. I’ve worked with it in the past…developing and testing apps for it. Maybe if I had one, I’d continue to develop for it. But neither I, nor my wife is enamored with the Windows 8 interface. Most of our exposure has been through the XBox version of Windows 8, but still—it just doesn’t do much for me. Unfortunately for Microsoft (and many of my friends there), I think Windows 8 will go the way of the Zune in a couple of years. I’m not sure what Microsoft will do after that, but I would imagine, heads will roll.
As for our carrier, we’re re-upping with AT&T, mainly so we can keep the plan we’ve had for the last few years. It fits us pretty well. I did look at Verizon, and if I was really still a fan of the NFL, their NFL app might have pulled me that way. But my desire to watch NFL games has dissipated over the last few years. Not having it on AT&T wasn’t deal breaker. I am hoping that with the new phones and the 4G signal, my reception is a little better. There are just too many places I have gone with my 3GS that I had 0 or 1 bar (like the place where my kids go for swim practice). My fingers are crossed on that one.
Right now the phones are still in their boxes until my wife and I both have time to activate them. That may be this afternoon or this weekend. Once we’ve had some time to play with them, I’ll report back on our experience.