No Droid for me, iPhone is the PC of smartphones

I have decided to hold onto my iPhone, for now anyway. Why? Because the iPhone is the PC of smartphones.

There is no piece of technological wizardry that I want so much as a Droid. Yet, I have decided to hold onto my iPhone. Why? Because the iPhone is the PC of smartphones.

I mean that in the good sense of what a PC represents, namely compatibility. Yes, Google's Android operating system may someday--probably will--become the standard for comparison among smartphones.

That time, however, is not here and may not arrive for several years. In the meantime, if I want just one smartphone, it will be an iPhone. The iPhone today represents compatibility and standards.

This is the opposite of the situation that Apple finds itself in with computers. In computing, a Mac comes close but is not, in the end, a real PC. Why? Because a Mac may be able to do 90 percent of what a PC can do, but that other 10 percent can be critical.

While I do most of my writing on my trusty MacBook Pro, there are still applications I use that are not available for Mac. Granted most of these are specialised apps, but they are important, even vital, to my various activities.

The applications used in my search-and-rescue and emergency management lives, just are not available for Macintosh. I wish they were, but the Mac is just too small a part of what is a small market to begin with.

Yes, I could use Apple's Boot Camp to turn my Mac into a PC. Or run a virtualized PC under Mac OS. But why? My current Macs are just a tad wimpy for such use, which also adds complexity, resulting in a computer that is harder to physically share with other users.

Therefore, I use a Mac for most of my personal work, including this blog, and a PC for applications that are not available natively for Mac. It is easy enough to grab the computer I need when I need it.

Less so with a smartphone. Sure, a Droid would be small enough to grab, but I do not need another phone number or another expensive monthly bill. The bill part really says it all since either an iPhone or Droid costs about $2,400 over the course of a two-year service agreement.

I really do like the Droid, just not enough to double my wireless expense. Especially, when I use iPhone apps that are simply not available for the Droid. Moreover, it will be a long time before Android offers the breadth and scope apps that iPhone offers.

Over time, there will be more Android apps that "beat" iPhone apps in features and functions. There will also be worthwhile apps that are only available for Android (and don't come from Google).

When that happens, I will reconsider my decision. That will, in any case, happen no later than a year from next June, when my AT&T contract ends.

In the meantime, I will be happy to have a phone that can do pretty much anything a smartphone can do. I will look longingly at a friend's new Droid, but I will be happy with my decision to saw with my iPhone.

P.S. I am also hearing that the Droid's shallow keyboard may not be such a good choice for people with big fingers, such as myself. Another reason to stay with my iPhone.

David Coursey tweets as @techinciter and can be contacted via his Web site.

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David Coursey

PC World (US online)
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