Sara's Column: Battle lines are drawn

We’ve drawn the line and taken sides here in The Democrat’s newsroom.
Oct 3, 2013

We’ve drawn the line and taken sides here in The Democrat’s newsroom.

No, not Republican or Democrat; no, not Alabama or Tennessee; I'm talking about Android versus iPhone.

Now, it's not a big secret that in the newspaper industry, Apple has a very strong hold. Apple does very well with graphics, and there are a lot of people in the newspaper industry who swear by all Apple products. I, however grew up tearing apart my Windows PC. I did my own repairs, whether they were software-related or hardware-related. So, I will grant that I may have a slight bias just based on my familiarity with Windows. I don't know if that translated into my anti-iPhone stance.

I will say I have actually given Apple products several chances, and I found they just don’t suit my preferences. A few people in our newsroom swear by their iPhones, and I’ve found we’ve developed a friendly Android versus iPhone rivalry.

I made my entry into the realm of smartphones fairly gradually. I started out with a basic Blackberry and quickly found it wasn't my cup of tea. When it was time for me to move into the iPhone versus Android realm, I did my research. At the time, the main contenders were the Samsung Galaxy S2 and the iPhone 4.

The iPhone looked like it had the features that I wanted, and it looked like a very solid phone, as far as processor speed, camera capabilities and availability of apps.

The first sticking point that came to my attention during my research pertained to storage.

The Samsung and the iPhone both offered the same amount of built-in storage, but the Samsung was less expensive and offered the option to expand available memory through a micro SD card.

The next item for me was the customizability. I wanted to be able to set up my preferences according to my own needs. On the iPhone, however, that customizability seemed be considerably limited when compared to on an Android-based phone.

The final deciding factor though for me, though, was when I learned that the battery on the iPhone could not be replaced by the owner of the phone; the phone would have to go back to an Apple store for an Apple technician to service the phone. I knew batteries have limited lifespans, so I knew that within at least two years, the battery would need to be replaced. I also knew I didn’t want the hassle of taking it to be serviced for a problem I knew how to fix. I know how to change a battery. When I can access the battery. Plus, I was annoyed on principle that the company would make it so difficult to replace a battery.

I chose my side.

Fast-forward about three years: I’d had my Galaxy S2 for years at that point, and the phone was starting to act up a bit. After I did some troubleshooting, I realized I needed a new battery. So I went online and bought a battery for $7. It was delivered to my home the next day, and it took me a grand total of 30 seconds to change out my battery. My phone worked like new.

The the same week I had to replace my battery, a friend of mine started having trouble with her iPhone 4. She took it in for servicing, where they told her she needed a new battery. Let’s just say it took more than a week and more than 20 times the cost of what I paid.

Consider me sold on Android and Samsung. Hence my new Samsung Note 2.

Like most things, the choice boils down to personal preference and what aspects are important to you.

I’m big on getting the most bang for the buck, so Samsung’s Android-based products meet my needs much better than iPhones. I’m also a tinkerer, and Apple really doesn’t like tinkerers.

If price isn’t an issue, I will grant that iPhones are great for people who want to just turn power up and go. If you’re not a tinkerer and you don’t have the time or inclination to customize or repair any issues that may crop up, the iPhone is a good option.

Personally, though, my feet are firmly trenched on the Android/Samsung side, no matter what those iPhone fans say.


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