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Out of the Closet

August 16th, 2013 - 10:36 am

SHOCKER: Confessions of a Droid Life writer who uses an iPhone.

Honestly, I’m not sure what the big deal is. I primarily use Apple products, but write about any tech company or gadget that catches my eye — and praise or criticize them as needed, just to give you two examples from Microsoft.

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You're right about tech writers being free to praise and pan at will. It's just that I gather DroidLife is aimed at a specific demographic. You write tech, but you don't call yourself ApplePundit. It's the same way that I used to have a subscription to Maximum PC, and I didn't expect to find articles written by people who primarily used Apple.

Maximum PC actually seems like a good comparison, skimming the latest DroidLife headlines. It was about hot new machines we could build, new programs and optimizations that would make Windows run even better for us... basically, its readers were the computer equivalent of car tuners. We wouldn't have considered an Apple user a credible source on how to tune Windows because the user experiences, especially back in the days of XP, were totally different, and the demographics had different priorities.

In the same way, I suspect that what annoys people is that when the guy writes an article like, for example, "Building a Better Android", he's considered as having a bias that doesn't match his audience. He harps a lot on scaling issues in apps, which is fair enough, but is that what Android users care about? True, Android has to compete with Apple. And Apple doesn't have nearly as many of those problems because Apple's approach, as I see it, is to optimize a limited selection of devices while maintaining a fairly tight control on what can run on them. But a lot of Android users put a great value on having a range of phone choices and a slightly more open market. EG, Android users are often willing to accept certain problems Apple doesn't have for features Apple doesn't have. Hence, critiques by someone who values totally different features won't be much use to them. And given that he uses primarily an iPhone, I think people rightly feel his priorities when he discusses Android are not going to match theirs. They might prefer to hear about ways to increase speed, or install different UI designs, for example.

Sure, DroidLife features some pieces by him on just general tech. But emphasis on SOME. Anyway, that really isn't what their audience is about. So is the outcry justified? Well, as he's said himself, it's not like he made a big secret about it. He isn't some shadowy iConspirator made to infiltrate and turn Android users. The people who use Android for practical rather than social reasons probably stopped reading his articles ages ago anyway, if they were finding them unhelpful. It still is kind of funny on the surface, though. And I'm sure some of the less dignified Apple users will try to turn it into some big nonsense flame-war about everyone secretly wanting to use Apple. But apart from that, no, it's not really a big deal.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
The big deal is that a lot of platform-chatter sites cater to the truly neurotic fanboy market. Saying one good thing about Apple is like.. well, saying one bad thing about Apple on an Apple-centric site.

Not many people consider OS and platform choice to be a toolbox decision-- "this works well for X, so I use it".

Apple in particular tends to get the worst of it in most techie circles as they went from being the company that was dooooomed, any day now, to the most valuable tech company on the planet. The fanboys can't really toss around their "toy computer" insults with the vigor they once enjoyed, and I suspect that miffs more than a few of them.

Personally, I just say: HA HA.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
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