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Which is the better one?

We see people walking down the street, each one to his/her phone, minding their own business. They all seem happy with what their O.S has provided them with. No one seems to care, no one feels the urge to show off or compete, until we start approaching a national holiday.

We start seeing commercials on TVs, ads on websites, and huge billboards by the giants displaying the new and upcoming feature of their product.

Those who have that particular phone now have something to show off about for the next three months or so, since that is usually the longest period before the competitors introduce the same or a very similar feature.

Some of the new features you hear about sometimes have nothing to do with the operating system, but more like a hardware change. For instance, the new phone will be slimmer and lighter, it used to be 15 mm in width, but now it’s only 14.5 mm and down from 210g to 202g. As if, my back won’t hurt me as much now that it’s lighter; but my pocket will.

I must admit some features are really interesting, but since we’re the ones paying the full price to buy a new phone or maybe renew a contract with a carrier and be stuck with their crappy customer service just because we want this phone, I think we should have a say in what we would like to see.

No one ever consulted with me for an opinion on what I am paying for. They say the people have spoken and we have listened. Well not in those exact words but in reality I never said a thing and I am part of the people.

What do we really want from our Phones in terms of hardware and software?

To begin with, if you are going to manufacture phones like there’s no tomorrow and you’re going to have updates and upgrades that only work with the newer version; I suggest you think about lowering your prices.

-A single person “might” consider buying a new phone once a year as his/her new year’s gift at the full price which ranges between 400 and 700 usd. If this is your target, then incorporate things that would attract this chunk of the market.

-A couple would find it overpriced to spend the 800 to 1400 usd every year to get the latest and “bestest” as advertised phone out there .

-An entire family would consider this as a disastrous day, a new phone? What do you mean a new phone? We just bought new ones? Has it been a year already? But mine still works fine. Ok, ok I will pass by the bank and get another loan, or sell my blood.

While those giants are competing, they leave their dirty work to the smaller yet huge companies, we call them “the carriers”, I am sure you have heard of them. These days you can’t have a smartphone unless you have a data plan. That’s right, no data means no deal.

It seems the phone manufacturer, the OS developer and carriers have one thing in common and that is the consumer. While they brag every year how they met the criteria or their sales or what their revenues were on the third quarter, we “the consumers” anxiously wait for new updates that wouldn’t have been noticed in the first place and might not even be used by many, simply to say “we have the latest and meanest product”.

Raghid Khalil

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