The new iOS7 may be the biggest design change in iOS history, but it did not bring around all that many innovations. I feel that Apple and innovation are somehow dying. To be clear, I have been using Apple products (from Apple TV and computers to cell phones) for more than 10 years at home and at work. I was a satisfied user of OS/2 and Linux before trying Apple. One could say that I've always looked outside the mainstream. But now I have decided to take a look at Microsoft, Google and Blackberry. Simply put, life is change.
I am surrounded by quite a few people who have been using Blackberry for many years and are satisfied. I tried out the Z10 and a new operations system, and I have to say that I was quite excited about it. It has new functions, new ideas and a good elaboration. This could be a solution for me! However, some key applications for me are simply not made for Blackberry, and its Playbook also does not seem like the best substitute for the iPad. This is really too bad, because in every other way, Blackberry seems like the best choice for me, although there are rumors that the company could shut down in the near future.
Android and Google
This was quick. I spent just a few days with a borrowed Android phone and can report that this system is totally off. Many applications are pretty good, but the system itself, from the design to the user's experience, is simply a catastrophe.
And what about Gmail and other applications? The situation is better, but I guess I am simply not the right type of person for Gmail. I have never been very fond of using labels and even a short trial period did not change my mind. So this is not an option for me either.
Windows Phone and Microsoft
I have never liked Microsoft. I always fought against it and never liked using its products. (perhaps excluding HW). Microsoft has a weak design and is full of bugs. I had the feeling that the system as well as its applications sort of live a life of their own. Well, OK, the last time I tried Windows was 15 years ago.
Hmm, is this really the final version? This surely must be some kind of a beta version: Half interface Metro and half standard Windows? WTF? Anyway, one can live with that, and Microsoft will surely finish this up within the next 10 years.
Windows Phone 8
Very nice design, at least at first glance. After a longer period of use, it seems similar to Windows 8, partially. My overall impression was pretty good, I could use this. However, I would be missing some vital applications that I am not willing to be without.
I like Linux, and I have supported open-source for many years. But again, I need some applications that are, unfortunately, simply not made for Linux.
After testing these platforms, I quickly realized that although Apple has not sparkled with new innovations over the last couple of years, it is still ahead of its competition. This is mainly thanks to great applications that exist for the Mac and iOS. So I won't be making any changes at least for now, but we shall see how long this will last. The competition is catching up quickly, so unless Apple starts rolling out new innovations fast, I will likely start looking elsewhere again, and may end up switching.
I would like to wish Blackberry success, because its current efforts are very cutting-edge. Even Microsoft is trying, and I must admit I am a fan of that company, too.
Note: In regards to the term “innovation” I do not mean just watch, glasses and similar items but also smaller application enhancements. If you look at Apple Mail, for instance, it is beginning to lag behind Windows and Gmail. This is just but one example where Apple can improve.