iPhone burn-out

Last week on Your Mac Life, Shawn King asked me why I wasn’t more excited about the iPhone. At the time I didn’t give him a very concrete answer, but the more I’ve had time to think about it, the more I realize—I’m burnt out. I’m just really sick and tired of hearing about the damn thing, already.

Listen, I’m sure the iPhone is going to be great—it’s probably going to be spectacular. And if I was in the market for a new phone I’d certainly be wheeling and dealing to get my hands on one without having to wait in the lines that are already queuing up.

But you know what? I’m not. I bought a new phone less than a year ago, and I happen to be pretty happy with it. I’m already an AT&T customer, so switching networks isn’t an issue either. The bottom line is that having an Apple-made phone isn’t the be-all-end-all of my existence.

Of course, friends and family who know I’m “the Mac guy” are asking me about the iPhone. Have I gotten my hands on one already? No? But I’m going to buy one the second it comes out, right?

Uh, not quite.

Don’t get me wrong—I’m often an early adopter. When the Intel switch happened, I made sure I got my hands on a Core Duo-equipped iMac quickly, and I’ve been very happy with it. When the video iPod came out, same story — I needed to get my hands on one quite quickly.

But for me—and I suspect, for a lot of us—having an Apple-made cell phone just isn’t that all exciting. I’m sure once I get my hands on one I’ll think differently and I’ll absolutely, positively have to have one.

Maybe.

That’s what I thought about the Apple TV, too—another recent Apple product that I’ve been lukewarm to. Then I got my hands on one, and I was unimpressed.

Maybe it’s because I have an Xbox 360, and Connect360 from Nullriver Software does pretty much everything I would need an Apple TV to do. Maybe it’s because being able to watch video from my computer just isn’t that big a deal to me.

Anyway, I’m not saying I’m special. But I am beginning to recognize that I don’t absolutely need to have every new Apple-branded product that comes out, and that’s distinctly different than how I used to feel. And I don’t think it’s because my tastes have changed that much. 

I think it’s because Apple’s market focus has changed. The more the company tries to appeal to a wider audience, and the more it diversifies as a lifestyle brand, the more frequently it’s bound to appeal to people with lifestyles different from mine.

What I’m coming to grips with is the realization that not liking every single thing Apple makes isn’t a betrayal. It’s not a betrayal on Apple’s part, any more than it is a betrayal on my part.

That’s not a bad thing. It’s just different. I guess these days, both Apple and I think differently—if you’ll pardon the expression.

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