I switched to Android yesterday

If you visit my Soundcloud channel you can hear why I switched to Android: http://soundcloud.com/scobleizer -- basically I switched because of Google Glass, which I expect to arrive soon, right +Steve Lee? :-)

Some other influences? +Vic Gundotra who has been taunting me with Android's advantages for years and +Guy Kawasaki who sent me a Motorola RAZR Maxx HD (I will be trying several other Android devices over next few months).

Overall I like it a lot more than I was expecting, mostly because of the keyboard and audio features.

The problem with being a fan boy: switching costs.

It really is frustrating to switch phone platforms. This is why Apple isn't going to turn unprofitable tomorrow, even if it never ships another innovation as big as the original iPhone.

We used to call this "lock in." So, what are the costs?

1. Apps that aren't on the new platform. I'm already missing several apps now that I've switched to Android, like Moves or Tempo that are only on iPhone. On the other hand, I have a far superior keyboard. I can't imagine having to switch to a platform like Windows Phone or Blackberry that simply doesn't have either the quantity or quality of apps that Android or iOS has. 

2. Airplay and other ecosystem lockins. I guess if I were coming from Windows, I'd miss Office. But since I have been an Apple fanboy for so long I have Apple TV's everywhere and even our video switcher has AirPlay built in (which lets me push video from my phone onto my TV). I really miss this, and I've already reached for my iPad a couple of times because of this.

3. Notifications are different. I like Apple's notifications better, but Android has one big advantage: I can delete them all with one click. I imagine I won't care so much about these once I get my Google Glass, which is where I hope to see most of my notifications soon. Apple's notifications are all set from one place, too, where on Android I have to go to each app's notifications setting to change them. Much harder and, even worse, most notifications come in and say "Droid" when they arrive, so I had to turn off audio one-by-one. Really annoying.

4. "Coolness factor." Let's be honest. My Motorola is hardly "cool." It simply doesn't look or feel as nice in my hands as an Apple device. Will the new Samsung be as cool as Apple? The device looks competent, but it is plastic. Sorry, plastic will never feel as cool as aluminum. Plus, the launch event that Samsung did proved to me that Samsung just isn't a cool company. Does this matter to you? Well, a Porsche goes the same place as my Toyota Prius. For many this does matter. For me? When I decided to go the Google Glass route I decided the phone doesn't really matter as much anymore so the "cool" argument will dramatically shift. At Verizon store last night the clerk already said he wants to try the Google Glass but is afraid of looking like a dork. In other words, he's looking to look cool and is unsure of whether Glass will ever get there.

5. Relearning bad habits. The keyboard is frustrating. Where's the "quotes?" Or where's the "@" symbol? I've used an iPhone for so long now that my fingers "know" where those things are and on Android I have to relearn. Huge switching cost.

6. The cost of driving to the store and getting a new SIM. For me the closest Verizon store is 40 minutes from my house. So, I had to invest about 1.5 hours just to get to the store and another 30 minutes in the store waiting for help to get a new SIM card and get my account moved over. That added to the cost of my new device.

There are other ways that these things lock you in, too. How about the carrier subsidy? I'm in a very fortunate position where I can afford to buy whatever damn gadget I want whenever I want it. Most in my family are NOT in that position. They have to wait the two years so they can afford to buy a new device. Once that's done they are locked into a new device and ecosystem for two more years.

So, Scoble, are you happy with your choice? So far there are pros and cons to moving to Android. Some extraordinarily good, like the keyboard (SwiftKey). Some bad, like Twitter's notifications totally suck.

Anyway, put this all together and if I were an Apple investor I wouldn't worry all that much about Apple's future. Truth is Apple won't lose a lot of customers to Android UNLESS Google Glass catches on. That is hardly assured since there is so much resistance to that idea.
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