Peace, love and misunderstanding: Not getting other people’s smartphone choices

Macalope

Call off the search! Yes, after years of research and an unsuccessful government-sponsored tag-and-release program, we finally found him.

We found the Windows Phone user.

Yep, turns out it’s MarketWatch’s Brett Arends.

“Why I dumped my Apple iPhone for a Microsoft phone” (tip o’ the antlers to @JonyIveParody and Tay Bass)

How uncool am I?

Brett, we write about technology online. None of us are “cool”.

There are no trolls like Apple trolls. None.

Oh, go on. [blush]

And yet here I am, about to toss a huge bag of peanuts into their cage.

Peanuts. Having read this article, that’s about right.

I recently bought an iPhone for the first time.

So I could write about how I don’t like it.

I finally gave in to the hype.

Hype! It’s nothing but hype. Just a brief aside to mention that. A brief, unsubstantiated, jerktastic aside.

I heard so many bug-eyed fanatics say they were the best thing since the wheel was invented.

When writing about your personal choices on the Internet, always make sure to insult the people who make a different personal choice than you do.

Because they’re the trolls, after all. All Arends is doing is unloading a semi full of truths all over the Information Superhighway. Don’t shoot the messenger.

Mmm-hmm.

After all, 50 million hipsters can’t be wrong. Right?

That’s 50 million a quarter. But, yes, we’re all hipsters. Even the iPhone-owning accountants and claims adjusters are vaping as they ride around on their Hoverboards.

Is the sarcasm coming through there? Because this is kind of an important point. All kinds of people own iPhones. Arends knows this, he’s just being a jerk about it. But he still apparently holds one actual stereotype about iPhone owners: They’re idiots who pay too much for technology.

After a short, but heroic, stint as an iPhone user, I’m dumping it.

At least you gave it a really half-assed chance. No one could ask for anything more.

In favor of a Windows Phone made by Microsoft instead.

Yes, really. How uncool is that?

Well, it’s kind of the ironic mustache of smartphone choices, so… maybe it’s a little cool?

I should make a few things clear at the outset. My experience surely wouldn’t be typical…

Your case isn’t typical but you’re OK with insulting everyone who makes a different decision than you. OK, got it. Don’t understand it, but got it.

If it weren’t for work demands, I probably wouldn’t even want [a smartphone].

Yeaaaaah, that’s probably not typical.

I’m not a gamer, I’m not running videos or using Snapchat, and I’m probably not doing half the things with a smartphone that all the hipsters are doing.

Was your brother killed by a hipster or something because…

Oh, and I’m not comparing the latest, most high-end models either.

If you were looking for help making a decision most people made last year or the year before, this is the piece for you.

I bought a brand-new iPhone 5c on eBay…

Can a two-year-old smartphone with three-year-old internals still be considered “brand-new” even if it’s still in mint-in-box condition?

The value of the iPhone line is staring Arends right in the face and he can’t even see it.

Meanwhile, by happenstance I also found myself simultaneously the owner of a Nokia Lumia 635, which costs just $70, compared with around $250 for my discounted 5c, and $450 for a 5s from Apple.

A used 16 GB iPhone 5c goes for almost $200 on eBay these days. In general, iPhones are made better than competing phones and they hold their value better. You might spend more for them up front, but you can also sell them for more later. They’re a better investment and Arends’ own experience buying smartphones is a perfect example of that. The Nokia devices sell for drastically less because hardly anybody wants one. They aren’t as well made and have an anemic ecosystem. Good luck selling that for anything when you’re done with it.

If, like Arends, you aren’t looking to buy into an ecosystem and don’t expect to use the device much then, yeah, getting the cheapest one might be the right choice. But that says absolutely nothing about what an iPhone is worth.

Arends ended up sticking with the Nokia because his needs were minimal and he wanted to spend as little as possible. That’s smart for him but most people don’t have those same criteria.

If you love your iPhone, good for you.

Stupid hipster.

It remains an open question as to how long Apple can continue to command massive price premiums over its competition.

Surely this house of cards will come crashing to the ground any day now.

Personally, I don’t understand why so many people cheerfully waste so much money on their cellular service anyway, including phones and plans.

They must be hipster idiot zealots. That’s the only possible explanation. It’s the only explanation that explains everything… with the least amount of work trying to figure out motivations, anyway.

Poor me. All I’m left with is a decent smartphone that does everything I want and a bunch of extra money clogging my bank account.

OTHER PEOPLE VALUE DIFFERENT THINGS THAN I DO AND IT MAKES ME SO MAD.

This isn’t that complicated, Brett. Even if you just consider gaming and listening to podcasts and whatever else people do regularly on iPhones to be just a hobby, that goes a long way toward explaining why someone might want to spend more money than you. If my hobby is collecting vintage stereopticon pornography, I’m probably going to spend more on vintage stereopticon pornography than you are. A lot more. Like so much money.

Er… that’s just a theoretical example, of course.

Additionally, though, there’s a pretty good case to be made that there’s value in terms of actual use you get out of it. For the iPhones, not the vintage stereopticon pornography.

Well, actually…

OK, the Macalope’s said too much again.

The thing is, Brett, you could have easily written a piece about deciding what phone is right for you without trying to slam people who decide to buy iPhones. But you didn’t. So who’s trolling who?

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