I love my Android Phone. Thank you, Apple! (Google fans, why do you hate iPhone so much?)

Though I prefer iPhone – and Windows Phone – to Android, I understand that some, maybe most, prefer Google’s platform over Apple’s. To each his own. What I cannot understand is why anyone, even the most ardent Android fan, would hate Apple and the iPhone.

Let’s be clear: without iPhone there is no Android. Not like it exists today. Without iPhone, Android probably still looks like a cheap knock-off of 2008’s latest Blackberry device.

The iPhone was released in June 2007. It launched a revolution in telecommunications, entertainment and personal computing. This is indisputable. Odds are very high that, pre-iPhone, you and everyone you knew used a “mobile” or a “cell phone” – but nothing like today’s mobile personal computer, the smartphone. True, Windows Mobile offered enhanced functionality for the few that owned one, mostly thanks to their employer. There were a few touchscreen devices pre-iPhone, such as the HTC Touch, but they were rare and rarely used.  Post-iPhone, a full touchscreen “app phone” is the standard across the industry and around the world.

The iPhone changed everything. If you care about smartphones and the mobile industry, than you owe iPhone your gratitude.

Before iPhone, apps were applications, and even then an oddity, rarely used, hardly understood by the masses. Now apps are a multi-billion-dollar industry that is remaking retail, gaming, search, and personal connectivity. Apps have replaced the “desktop” metaphor for human interaction with personal computing and data resources.

Thanks to the iPhone we now carry with us these amazing and powerful computing devices that we use for shopping, driving, gaming, watching movies, taking videos, documenting our lives, purchasing goods and services and much much more. You should be thankful!

A large part of the Apple ‘hate’ seems to come from this silly notion that Apple is ‘closed’.

Closed is great.

Apple’s closed ecosystem spawned the global app craze. Apple’s closed ecosystem enabled many companies to generate billions of dollars in wealth. That is still a rarity amongst the entire Android ecosystem. Apple’s closed ecosystem delivers movies and music and content that is safe, secure and usable. There is probably no competing Google Play without Apple’s closed ecosystem. Without Apple selling hundreds of millions of its (closed) devices, Google does not pour billions and billions of dollars into rapidly iterating and building out its Android platform. Being closed enabled Apple to profit, to innovate, and to release revolutionary new products into the market.

I love my iPad. Perhaps you have a Nexus 10. Fair enough. But I doubt your Android tablet would even exist without iPhone and then iPad. It’s not like Google is making nay money off these devices. Consider Microsoft. Microsoft has talked for a decade about tablets. For years they’ve shown off their “slate” technology at all the world’s grandest tech conferences. The result? Nothing. Not until Apple sold a hundred million of its iPad tablets, spawning yet another computing revolution.

I admire Apple for its innovation, for its commitment to continuous improvement. I do not mind if you think Android is better. Great, go for it. Choice and competition is good. But think back to before iPhone and before iPad. That’s probably what we would still be using today.

Don’t believe me? Just look at the PC industry. What was the last innovation that industry spawned – that wasn’t a copy-follow of Apple?

If the Apple haters won, there would be no Android; not as we know it today. No great apps. No portable gaming beyond Nintendo and an expensive, clunky Sony device – without a phone. If the Apple haters won, a full touchscreen smartphone would most likely still be something that only a very few could use or afford.

Closed is fine by me.

When I have a problem with my iPhone, I go to the Apple Store. I know who to call, who to blame, who can fix it. How does that work with your Samsung Galaxy? Do you go to Samsung? Google? Your carrier? What about updates? Apple’s closed ecosystem ensures I get timely updates – forever.

It was Apple’s closed iTunes that helped to limit music piracy, and sent that money to the artists and publishers. Admittedly, there are numerous competing digital media platforms and payments systems. But I have not once ever had a problem with a faulty charge, a virus-laden app, a song that did not play thanks to iTunes. I’ve been using Apple’s solution for nearly a decade, problem-free. Open has simply not served me as well.

How many developers are making money from Apple’s closed ecosystem? Ten thousand? One hundred thousand? A million? Far more – and for far more – than on the Android side of the fence.

Even when there are equivalent solutions available, I’ve noticed that Apple’s efforts at design and simplicity for all spur widespread adoption. My parents never in their life made a Skype call. But in just this year they’ve had dozens of videochats with their grandchildren, thanks to FaceTime on the iPad.

It is Apple’s closed ecosystem that has helped make them not just America’s richest company, but the world’s. They have generated billions and billions of dollars of wealth for thousands. So end the hate.

Be happy with your choice. I know I’m happy with mine.

Author: Brian S Hall

Brian S Hall writes about technology, immortality and food for ReadWrite, Techpinions, Unwired View and other publications. His thoughts on the 'smartphone wars' and how these are rapidly de-constructing markets, industries, business models and relationships around the world can be found on his personal site at www.brianshall.com.

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  • JDSoCal

    Show me benchmarks where your phone is faster than the iPhone 5′s 1600 Geekbench score. All things being equal, slow-ass Java will never be as fast as native code.

  • JDSoCal

    Where does Brian say Apple is the “sole” innovator? And the fact that Palm was around all these years and *didn’t* bring a multi-touch smartphone to market that revolutionized the entire industry tends to prove Brian’s point, not disprove it.

  • JDSoCal

    1) It’s not arrogance when a company develops with its core customers in mind, and correspondingly has the highest customer satisfaction every year. Just because *you* don’t like Apple’s UI doesn’t make them arrogant – it makes you arrogant that you want something different than all of Apple’s satisfied customers do.

    2) Apple has made developers rich by orders of magnitude more than Android, and yes, would like you to do so on their machines, because they happen to be a for-profit business (which Android is not, based on results to date) and the App Store really doesn’t make that much money for Apple But that isn’t good enough; you demand the right to make money off of Apple *your* way. Who is arrogant?

    3) There is no “borrow” in intellectual property law. There is licensing. Apple always gives companies an opportunity to license. Samsung refused. Your problem seems to be like many Fandroids, i.e., a childlike refusal to accept the basic precepts of well-settled intellectual property law.

  • Space Gorilla

    No, I think it’s more about nerds having their heads explode because Apple has clearly won. The computer has been abstracted, made simple, gone mainstream, and nerds HATE that. Apple wasn’t supposed to win. This makes the nerds angry.

  • Simon Gendreau

    I do not hate Apple, I love Android.

  • remydlc

    You are also missing the point without previous smart phones, Apple would not have tried to improve them and the issues with the US carriers. And yes, Microsoft were the first on many departments that they are mostly irrelevant at this point. Apple is becoming irrelevant to many people. Thats why I’m about to ditch my iPhone for another Android phone. iOS got boring a while ago.

  • Simon Gendreau

    Jdsocal, be aware that faster is not always better …that is what your girlfriend may think as well.

  • http://twitter.com/peterjohn peterjohn

    How have they won? There are plenty of metrics out there that say its pretty even…

  • http://blog.nordquist.org Brett Nordquist

    Do tell where those metrics are located, outside of market share? Samsung is the only OEM making any money on Android and they are only taking 1/3 the profit that Apple is earning in smartphones. What is Android winning at?

  • wlmeng11

    You’re joking right?
    Does Mac vs PC ads ring a bell?

  • wlmeng11

    Apple has been around for “all these years” and it took them until 2007 to come out with the iPhone.

    It took years and years of previous development for Apple to be able to take the next step with the iPhone.

    Not discrediting Apple here, but just want to say that they would have nothing without existing technologies.

  • CrazyMac10

    1) It’s not the quality of their products that’s at issue or their customer satisfaction … did I say it was? Apple’s arrogance centers around their attitudes about their products, services and supposed IP! I have no problems with people deciding they like Apple products, choose what you want, that’s great. Apple truly believes they created something unique and new out of thin air, or straight out of their own imagination … not true! They have in fact created good products putting together pieces parts and concepts from multiple sources that already existied over many years, but unique and patenable I personally don’t think so. It’s our patent system that has failed much like our tort system that allows one party to sue another over something as trivial as spilled coffee (McDonalds stupid lawsuit) or a rectangular phone with icons representing apps (Apple Vs Samsung). It’s arrogance for Apple to take all the previous work from companies like Palm, Nokia, Motorola, Convergent Technologies, etc. and claim it as theirs. That is the arrogance I speak of.

    2) I don’t care about how others decide to spend their money, if they want to walk in lockstep with Apple, that is fine, if others want to walk in lockstep with Google, that’s also fine. I’m responding to why I don’t like Apple, this is purely personal choice and you seem to think when the author asks for reasons why Google fans don’t like Apple there is somehow some way you can argue us out of our position … that is not the case. Microsoft tries to do the same thing as Apple (force me into using their products and services), but at least I can acquire open source tools that allow me to create cross platform applications for Linux and Windows and Microsoft won’t try and sue me. Apple on the otherhand will sue anyone because they get pissed off because they are trying to make a better mouse trap.

    3) Apple tries to license way too much that is too obvious as next steps in the evolution of products and software and then wants way too much money for it even if they “graciously” decide offer licenses. Fact is, Apple has been taking unreasonable advantage of a patent system that is out of touch with reality for far too long. They need to be taken down a peg. Don’t get me wrong on this either, Apple does create good products and they are usually high quality, but to patent a rectangle, or swipe to unlock and then charge extravagant license fees for others to use their “IP” and THEN they turn around and steal the swipe down from the top for notifications feature from Android. That is deceptive at best and hypocritical at worst. Yes, again, that is arrogance.

  • spaceriqui
  • JDSoCal

    What metrics are there, besides margins and profits? Fanboy titillation?

  • JDSoCal

    That was arrogant? Really? Some hipster bantering with a nerd guy? I thought those ads were good-natured ribbing.

    Compare: Samsung mocking sheep standing in line.

  • JDSoCal

    So you think a giant quad core phone that’s almost a tablet barely edging out a compact dual core phone is a victory? Kind of proves my point, slow Java needs more hardware horsepower just to keep things equal.

  • JDSoCal

    Well the guy I was responding to, Danny Davis, mentioned speed. But yes, both my girlfriend and yours concur, they prefer when I take it slow.

  • JDSoCal

    So some smart-ass quip that Jobs made 16 years ago matters why? Apple licensed the Xerox, so Jobs actually paid for this “stealing.” Unlike Google and Samsung.

  • Anonymous

    Le wild apple phanboi appeared!

  • Sean

    People don’t really hate Apple for its products. They hate their litigious business policy. Win in court rather than in the marketplace.

  • surethom

    I dont hate iphone I just find it iOS Basic. No widgets, & to do a simple thing like turn on/off wifi you have to go into settings, Why. Once iOs gets more advanced & not just a list off apps, then I will not like iphone or ipad.

  • surethom

    “It was Apple’s closed iTunes that helped to
    limit music piracy”

    It was apple that forced DRM onto us & was one of the last (forced) to move over to mp3

    DRM causes Piracy where as mps has lessened it.

  • Space Gorilla

    Oh, don’t misunderstand me, I’m not talking about market share. I’m talking about the entire approach to computing, making it simple, abstracting the computer, the shift to industrial design and build quality being important, the integration of hardware and software, the app and content ecosystem, all that stuff that Apple has been doing for decades that the rest of the tech industry (and the nerds) basically laughed at and said would fail. Maybe you’re not old enough to remember when all the ‘real computer users’ made fun of Apple because graphical user interfaces were ‘for babies’. True story. But now the tech industry is adopting Apple’s approach because it is the right approach. You can’t argue with success. But it’s obvious from this comment thread that you can certainly be angry about success.

  • Space Gorilla

    The nerds still don’t get it. iOS devices do everything that normal users want to do, and more. You’re living in a dream world where iOS users are trying to do things with their devices that evil Apple won’t allow in their evil closed system. The reality is that just isn’t happening. Take a look at customer satisfaction levels among Apple customers. It’s really, really high. If you like Android, great, good for you. But why does Apple’s success make you angry?

  • nalij

    Not so much a dream world as a reality. Apple’s success is awesome, it makes the market a better place and when they push the envople like they did in 2007, I give them major kudos.

    But alas, I don’t rest on past laurels – if I did then Ford would still be the best car, I mean Henry did make the first real obtainable automobile. No, I know would say Ferrari or Bentley takes that crown. Same with Apple and I’ll hate on Android when it becomes lazy.

    But for real, you can’t see that Android offers a more advanced tech experience???

    Android either supports or has supported first all of the following (compared to iPhone):
    - MMS
    - Flash
    - True multitasking (running two apps on screen at same time)
    - NFC
    - Wireless Charging
    - LTE
    - External Storage
    - Cloud Integration
    - 3rd Party App OS Integration
    - Support for 3rd Part App Stores

    and this is just me going off the cuff…..

    So I would clearly say, yes, my Android does many things that you’re iPhone cannot.

    That has NOTHING to do with how satisfied Apple’s customer base is. My mom is satisfied with a rotary phone, doesn’t mean that it’s a great tech device.

    When Apple drops another iPhone on the market like they did in 2007, I’ll be ecstatic, until then, I’ll take the Android even if there is no support line to call or Genius Bar to talk too.

  • nalij

    Just going to touch on your responses….

    It’s just about the fastest….but, not the fastest (that’s an Android – I believe the new Note II took the crown).

    Except now that the battery life on the Note II exceeds that of the iPhone.

    Agree all components are not equal, I would definitely prefer a Samsung screen to Vizio ;-) I have yet to feel that my flagship Nexus devices are ‘half-baked’ on the contrary when I look at my wife’s iPhone5 I just wonder what happened to integrating the latest technology (see my above post).

    I could care less that Google doesnt have a support number or I can’t talk to a Genius. Because one, I have access to the best source of information ever – the internet and two the Genius bar, ain’t so genius, I have fixed my wife’s iPhone when those idiots couldn’t.

    And Apple is a marketing company, they have some of the best marketing scheme’s, strategies and ideas. I wouldn’t try and dismiss that – that is a huge deal. There ability to market is amazing, truly amazing. However, I don’t care about your beautiful ad’s – alas though many people do. If Samsung spends 12x the amount on marketing for their SMARTPHONES only – well than that is pathetic.

    BUT, they (Samsung) still make a more advanced device – which in the end is all that matters to me.

  • Space Gorilla

    You make my point for me when you say “But for real, you can’t see that Android offers a more advanced tech experience”. You just don’t get it. Only a tiny, tiny, tiny, minority cares about an advanced tech experience (as you define it). Take a look at usage data for Android vs iOS. Computing has gone mainstream, normal people just don’t care, as much as you yell and stomp your feet, the age of nerdery is over. Almost nobody cares how fast your quad core renders anything. It also depends how you define a tech experience. If it is ease of use across an ecosystem, Apple wins. The tech industry sees this (the very real and large profits Apple is making are pretty tough to argue with), which is why everyone is scrambling to deliver a tech experience which is similar to Apple. Your Android experience is going to slowly get more like Apple, not less, because Apple’s approach is where the money is.

  • http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B002VH8ECQ Brian S Hall

    You obviously have never read their earnings statements.

  • http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B002VH8ECQ Brian S Hall

    Nonsense. No one forced DRM onto you or anyone and technology is not the reason why people steal music.

  • nalij

    I do get it…perhaps your confused. The whole premise of the article is why Android users, get ‘agitated’ with Apple – it’s because Apple charges for an inferior tech product and makes you pay a premium. Give me the latest and greatest and I’ll pay for it.

    I would say lots of people care about tech, whether it means something to them at this very moment is different. When the iPhone came out you couldnt send an MMS message – that’s crazy since BREW phones supported that for years. I would say that is hardly a minor tech feature.

    I would think a larger screen, better battery, awesome connectivity speeds are all things that every user would care about – this is not just me. All things that Android is doing or has done before or better now than Apple.

    I as a consumer don’t care ‘where the money is’ let Google, Samsung, Asus figure out how to make Android profitable for them.

    As a consumer I know that my Android does many things that the iPhone does not – and that’s in the end what matters.

  • remydlc

    right, because all, we consumers, care is about a company getting richer… give me a break. like you are on Apple’s payroll. Samsung is selling more phones than Apple. PERIOD. Now, that they are making less money, just indicates they are willing to give more people their product for less money. Apple dont give a shit about you, me or the poor people. At least Sammy is making technology affordable for the masses. What do people care for Apps they can’t use/afford?

  • remydlc

    Right, because we all, consumers, care is about a company getting richer… give me a break. like you are on Apple’s payroll. Samsung is selling more phones than Apple. PERIOD. Now, that they are making less money, just indicates they are willing to get their product to people’s hand for less money. Apple dont give a shit about you, me or the poor people. At least Sammy is making technology affordable for the masses. What do people care for Apps they can’t use/afford? they give a damn.

  • remydlc

    i didnt know google runs on android. . So ignorant comment SMH

  • remydlc

    no it doesnt. My wife is far from a nerd and she complains thigns she couldnt do with her iphone she can with her droid. soooo

  • http://blog.nordquist.org Brett Nordquist

    Samsung can sell all the phones they want and spend $12 billion this year marketing them. But Apple still takes over 70% of all smart phone profits or over 3x what Samsung sees. You would have been a great fit at Amazon during their early days when the joke was, “We’re losing money on each sale, but making it up in margins.” Go back to school and study the difference between revenue and profit.

  • remydlc

    Right, because we all, consumers, care is about a company getting richer… give me a break. like you are on Apple’s payroll. Samsung is selling more phones than Apple. PERIOD. Now, that they are making less money, just indicates they are willing to get their product to people’s hand for less money. Apple dont give a shit about you, me or the poor people. At least Sammy is making technology affordable for the masses. What do people care for Apps they can’t use/afford? they give a damn.

  • remydlc

    when does google compared themsevles to Apple? last time i checked that was Samsung… Google does android, the manufacturer do the rest! educate yoruself and stop being so ignorant. Mac Vs PC was apple making fun of PC viruses, yet unfortunately, (mac user here) we do get viruses as well.

  • remydlc

    you made me laugh. are you investing in Apple stock? if not, then you are a clown saying “Oh Apple has a Trillion and Samsung does not” yet you are working (i imagine) your ass off while they’re getting richer and richer. Is not like you are on their payroll.

    It doesnt matter if they make most of the $, they are not delivering what we want. I for one, gonna get rid of my iphone. I tried the new Nexus 4 on a prepaid plan and i just can’t let it go. My phone is jailbroken and all and can’t do much with it, is like it is handicapped comparing to their rival. I dont care how much $ Tim Cooks takes to his home. I care where i spend my money and it gotta be the best.

  • http://blog.nordquist.org Brett Nordquist

    So you have to unlock your Nexus before it becomes of any value. Sounds like a quality product!

  • remydlc

    As a Mac user, for years, they have been improving it and making it way ahead of Windows, they can’t say the same on the mobile one. Can’t remember when they brought something useful to their iOS beside their crippled notification system…We all know their map was a disaster. Their passbook app? well is an app, not really a feature of iOS. The last thing i saw was an commercial of the iphone 5 “noise cancelation microphone” my phone has that, the galaxy s2 had it, etc. Not sureif my iphone 4 has 2 microphones for the same use…. the point is, they are resorting to such minimal thing to sell the iphone because it seems they stop advancing the OS a while ago, while google has kept on improving non stop.

  • remydlc

    no, the Nexus(es) come(s) already unlocked. unlike the iphone lol educate yoruself…

  • remydlc

    google does have a support line. they trade your phone immediately if needs replacements. Sammy i dont now. So you are telling me Apple Spent a whole year testing their Maps? their Antenna? Their device so it wont get scuffed? WOW you are so blind JDSoCal… wake up dude. you are already hurting yourself.

  • Space Gorilla

    Again you make my point for me, “because Apple charges for an inferior tech product”.

    If consumers care about tech the way you say they do, then Apple’s customer satisfaction and retention rates should be quite poor. But the opposite is true. Of course you’ll argue that Apple customers just don’t know any better. But wait, you can’t argue that because you’ve already taken the position that consumers care about tech as you’ve defined it. This means they would be aware of Apple’s inferior tech, and that would mean low customer satisfaction and retention rates. Logic is a harsh mistress.

    Further, if consumers care about tech the way you say they do, and if Android does so much more, then device engagement should be much higher on Android. But this is not the case. Engagement is actually lower on Android.

    Reality disagrees with your position, that’s all. I’m happy Android works for you and that you take advantage of the ‘superior tech’, but you’re in the minority.

  • nalij

    I love it! These comments always have me laughing.

  • nalij

    Your iPhone just got sh@t on….All goes back to the tech.

  • Space Gorilla

    Good for you, I’m glad that is what works for you. But you must understand that you are in the minority, you really are.

  • nalij

    People can only care about tech once they are introduced to it. I have converted a few iPhone users to Android once I showed them what there device was lacking. I can talk about some abstract technology but it’s until you experience it, you’ll never demand it.

    My point is Apple has the ability to introduce the most advanced tech experience to millions of people and yet doesn’t – that is my qualm.

    As Apple has slowed considerably in growth and Samsung continues to gain marketshare I would say the data supports the fact that as more people learn the more they depart from Apple.

    So reality actually supports my position.

    Please show me these engagement statistics you speak of. You do realize that the most used OS is Android right – that means Android is the majority. Granted I recognize not all Android devices support all of the functionality that I have talked about.

    Bottomline is Apple was the shit in 2007, now it’s Android, in 5 years it will be something else (probably along the lines of Google Glasses or MSFT AR glasses or whatever Apple is working on in that department).

  • remydlc

    how is that i am a minority? if you go by that logic, then most people in the state will do just fine with a 3.5′ phone that just makes phone calls, send text, and check on emails and news… if you keep applying that logic, why does a kid need an iPad? i didnt have one, and i grew, wanna say average smart, so i dont get called cocky. see my point, the more advancement is made, and the more people adopt it, the smarter we get as a population. Apple is for sure not the one telling me what i need, and shouldnt to you neither.

  • remydlc

    i was once like many fanbois, i would get into a big argument with droid users… When i think about i was stupid because i didnt even tried one for days, maybe back then was enough, but one day i woke up to all the noise Android was making, replace my work blackberry with it, and since there on, i have been barely using my iphone. For work meetings and emails is the only thing i use it. I get more screen real estate, widgets are a huge plus (dont have to open the app to see what’s going on”, i love google now (seriously, Siri is crap compared to it) and just love having options on default apps/and all the tweaks i can do if i wanted to.

  • http://twitter.com/peterjohn peterjohn

    They’re unlockable by design (Verizon botched that one, so thank you carriers).