One Taylor Hatmaker announces in ReadWriteWeb that he has done the unthinkable. He’s ditched his iPad in favour of a Google Nexus 7. It’s pretty extreme, so I investigated further.
His first point, that the Nexus 7 doesn’t feel anything like an iPad is valid. All cushioned, dimply rubber, the 7-inch Googler is kind to the touch and easy on the wrists. In contrast, he says, Cupertino’s finest feels like a sharp slab of metal. Fair comment.
I can also agree on price: At $199 the Nexus 7 is a lot of competence for little dollars. And don’t forget that since is is only $199 you don’t need to swaddle it in fancy dress. It’s a disposable item whereas the iPad must be preserved in mint condition if you want to excel on the aftermarket.
All well and good. But then we come to Hatmaker’s coup-de-grậce: Android. Here I’m not too sure. Taylor cites extreme levels of customisation “thanks to launchers, widgets and deep tweaks like custom keyboard. With a bit of elbow grease you can sculpt Android to fit your own needs exactly.”
For the tech-head, a meddlesome OS such as Android is always going to win over the prim and tightly corseted iOS. But the 5.2 million Americans in the last quarter who chose an iPad over a very customisable Samsung are not at all concerned about this.
They don’t even have an inkling about Apple’s nannying. All they know is that friends, uncles, aunts and grandma are using iPads and keep on telling everyone how wonderful they are. Give grandma a few more customisable options and she’ll never be off the phone.
But back to Hatmaker’s first point: Size and cuddleability. I can see the attraction in this. I would definitely like to have the chance to buy a similar product (although $199 would be too much to hope for) running Apple’s iOs. Let’s watch this space.