Its been a cliched debate as well as a dilemma for many gadget enthusiasts and modern day technology geeks. Let’s evaluate what we have on plate now as a consumer for portable technology gadgets. Not so long back, we were overwhelmed with technology advancements to portable organizers, cameras, phones, music players, or the laptops and personal computing. These technologies have undergone metamorphosis into a single device that handled multiple things i.e. the smart phone, the smart tablet, and an even more mutated form available now… aka the phablet.
I would take up this debate briefly in 2 different parts.
Choice of your technology gadget between years 2008 and 2011:
In fact, Apple’s dominance in this market, in this era was very evident, with its revolutionary iPhone that was released in 2007. Other technology giants did bring in very competitive devices led by the Samsungs, LG, Sony on Google’s Android OS. Established devices with OS running on Blackberry, Windows, or Symbian really were faced with an uncertain future ahead. We all would have read a ton of reviews on equally compelling features in these non-Apple devices at lesser prices. Inspite of these combined efforts from competition, the market figures were very much in favor of Apple. The flaming technology war between these technology vendors seemingly had low or no impact on the growth of Apple’s market. As satirically recorded in this post on an Apple’s unofficial website:
Microsoft is moribund proof of how far the mighty may fall when men of vision aren’t holding the reins. But if you think that “Apple is doomed” will come true eventually if you just repeat that mantra often enough, I humbly suggest that you instead repeat to yourself, “I won $10 billion in the lottery and the Swedish Bikini Team moved into my guest bedroom.” That has a far better chance of happening, and it’ll likely be far more personally fulfilling if it does.
Choice of your technology gadget post 2011:
The major events and changes that I see which have taken place post the year 2011:
- More advanced mobile phone hardware:
- Unimaginable faster chip/processors, and higher memory phones, including multi-core processors. Who thought couple of years back we will have a quad core mobile phone with 2 GB of RAM? The very popular Apple iPhone4 in its era had just a single processor not long back.
- Much better display technology, GPU, and High Definition LED screens. Future technology in a year could even see flexible screens
- More connectivity capabilities. From 2G to 3G we now have unimaginable speeds with 4G LTE in mobile communication. We have upgraded Bluetooth 4.0, Hotspot, and other connectivity options emerging and becoming popular e.g. the NFC.
- Entirely revamped operating systems for the mobile from multiple vendors in addition to Apple’s iOS 6
- Google’s Android went a long way ahead from its v2 releases aka the Gingerbread to its new Android 4.0 ICS and its the latest Jellybean 4.1 & 4.2
- Microsoft’s re-entry into this market with its new Windows 8 platform.
- Blackberry (rechristened version of RIM) may probably well emerge as a phoenix from ashes with its new Blackberry OS v10
- Tragical demise of Steven Paul Jobs from Apple. Uncertainty existed over the passing away of this technology guru, who left and revived Apple more than 2 times in his career.
- Increasing demand for low-cost/budget devices in the market. These were primarily vendors from Asia like the Samsung, LG, Micromax, Karbonn etc. These devices, allowed consumers the important option to buy and use products for a year or two and then change this later. With technology getting outdated as fast as every 6 months, this has been a very important factor affecting this market. In densely populated markets like Asia, such vendors played an important role in the market dynamics for smart phone sales.
- Samsung’s emergence in the market with its Galaxy series of phones and tablets has shown there is no single market leader. It has been a relentless release of various phones, with Samsung’s flagship models – the Galaxy S3 and its latest Galaxy Note 2, virtually taking the market by storm.
As a person, who loves gadgets, I own quite a few products from the Apple stable. Come 2013, my choice at least in the smart phone space has widened. Very recently, I gifted my wife, the Galaxy Note 2 from Samsung, and personally found this very appealing both on technical features and personal choice. This was also at a much lesser price when compared to the latest Apple iPhone 5. Now this particular choice of gadget for me, may very well change again in a few months, with a next version device from either the Apple, Microsoft or the Blackberry stable. One thing is certain; while I may still wait in a queue at an Apple Store for its next version device, I certainly will be more than willing now to explore other devices.
Interesting times ahead. What is your choice of gadget? Are you decided on it yet?