All the snobbish reasons I won't go Android

How a Seinfeld-ian meltdown over what phone my wife will buy helped me to discover who I truly am: An unapologetic member of the bourgeoisie with real, first-world problems

September 12, 2013
Jonathan Libov

My wife is nearly ready for her first smartphone after resisting for several years. When I brought up the two iPhones Apple introduced on Tuesday, she told me she's getting "a Galaxy".

Only a few weeks ago I came to forgive my mother for buying a Galaxy and a Surface; now I have to deal with my wife, the eventual mother of my children (though I'll be reevaluating this), even considering Android. The slogan for the Galaxy S4, "Life Companion", suddenly hits too close to home.

She heard that "the Galaxy" is better. Why, she asked me, am I so sure the iPhone is better?

In formulating my answer, I tried to set aside all the snobbish, fussy, she-eats-her-peas-one-at-a-time-type details that I care about as a person who strives to make beautiful, well-crafted (iOS) apps. Here were my best attempts at convincing her why not to buy a Galaxy:

All the new, cool apps come out on iOS first! Hmm. Much as my wife loved Dots, she's gone for years without experiencing much envy that I get to use apps. If she had been purchasing her first smartphone in 2011 then the "quality of apps" argument might have been true, but truthfully in 2013 it's not a differentiator for her.

You could potentially get malware on Android! Stumped again. My wife's laptop still runs Windows XP. The reason she doesn't suffer (much) from malware on her computer is the same as she probably won't on mobile: She's such a light user of internet services that it's unlikely she'll be surfing wherever malware lurks.

This was not going well. I was starting to flail. Even worse, the next few reasons that sprung to mind were just the type of snobbish, fussy reasons I had been trying to avoid.

My dear wife, are you aware of how slippery and plasticky the Galaxy feels in your hand?

Shudder to think, do you seriously want the (type)face you wake to every morning be a "Frankenfont" like Roboto?

Speaking of robots, Are you not bothered that the mascot for the Android OS is a command-line colored, dystopian robot??

Where on Android are you going to find precious attention to detail like the toggled switch in iOS' flashlight utility?"

Does it not offend your sensibilities to have kludgy stock apps from the OEM and carrier installed on your home screen!?

Are you aware how different the color temperature is from one Android device to another?!?


This was a meltdown on the order of Jerry Seinfeld failing the polygraph that would otherwise prove he didn't watch Melrose Place.

Like Jerry, I eventually gave up. What's more, I decided to stop denying who I really am: A card-carrying member of the bourgeoisie with real, first-world problems. I get upset by odd kerning in corporate logos. I listen to five hours per week of podcasts featuring well-to-do white men whine about computers. For God's sake, I read shit on Medium once a day.

I'm loud, I'm proud, and I'm bourgeois. To the point: I'll happily pay a premium for what I think is the most well-crafted device/OS pair on the market.

And yes, I understand that there are fussy people who still prefer Android. I hear your arguments, but every time I pick up an Android I'm reminded that it just isn't for me.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.