Marco Arment: “Droid isn’t actually “close enough” to the iPhone in most important ways, but in marketing and customer perception, it doesn’t matter. Apple can’t win this fight on quality and overall experience because most of these customers have never owned iPhones. They don’t know what they’re missing. They just know what the Verizon marketing told them: Droid phones are pretty much like the iPhone. When they encounter all of Android’s rough edges, they assume that all smartphones are like that, and grow to generally dislike using them. (Much like the computer market.)”
I’m finding that most folks, of the geeky variety, that have Android based phones tend to have them for philosophical reasons. “They’re more open”, “Apple is EVIL”, “I can’t make the app I want”, “AT&T sucks.” Typical geek reasoning. The normal folks mainly don’t care if the phone is iOS or Android or Symbian or Windows Mobile. They mainly care about the User Experience(UX) of the thing, and that they can find an application for locating their favorite restaurant and make reservations at the touch of a button, or they can check Facebook or Twitter and update their location on Four Square and Gowalla.
Another thing most people do care about is call quality and not dropping calls. If you follow Marco, he lives in New York, you should note that he has issues with Verizon as a carrier. Dropped calls, lack of signal, etc. It’s just like AT&T, it just depends on where you live as to the experience. In Fresno, where my brother lives, Verizon has a great network. There was a time when a Verizon based phone wouldn’t work inside my house, but an AT&T phone would. It’s all about where you are. Hopefully AT&T gets their act together and expands their network with all the cold hard cash they’re making from Apple fans. Heaven knows they’re only going to get more subscribers that use more data. Trust me, data usage is only going to go up now that they have tethering. If they don’t improve their network there could be a massive rush to Verizon at some point, at which time we’ll discover if Verizon can really offer a better experience with the iPhone. Something tells me, it’ll be about the same.
And, yes, I’m well aware of the major differences between AT&T and Verizon’s network. AT&T’s is much better for a couple of different use cases. One: Using the internet while on the phone. Two: Using your phone outside of the US, on Verizon if you went to Europe you’d have a paperweight in your pocket. Not so with AT&T.
And Marco’s closing statement of “I’m guessing a CDMA Verizon iPhone will be available within 6 months. If it isn’t, I might need to start learning Java.” tells you where he’s leaning.