Nexus ONE or Iphone
IT LOOKS like everyone knows I own a piece of hot property.
And everyone has been asking me the same questions: Is the Google
Nexus One (N1) better than the iPhone? Why should we bother about
Google’s first own-brand smartphone when there is the iPhone?
In my opinion, both are wrong questions to ask.
In terms of device specs, the N1 beats the iPhone 3GS hands down.
The N1 has a higher resolution screen of 800 x 480 pixels (or twice
that of the iPhone’s), 5-megapixel camera with flash (3-megapixel and
no flash for the iPhone), twin microphones for active noise
cancellation to block out background noises and a much faster processor
(1GHz vs 600MHz).
That the N1 is the smartphone with the best specs around is only
because it is the latest. In the ongoing brutal cellphone war, the next
big phone (think iPhone version 4 or N2) will surely be even better.
The right question to ask is: ‘Which mobile platform do I want to
support – the Google Android or the iPhone’s Mac OS?’ This is because
chances are, once you are on one platform, your future phones will go
on the same platform too due to familiarity.
Many of my friends who are already on the iPhone were not convinced
about the N1. Rightly so, because they are already used to the iPhone
and the user interface on the N1 is, at best, comparable.
What makes the Android different from other mobile platforms is that
it is, in spirit, a Web phone. The reason is simple: The meteoric
growth of Google’s online advertising business in the PC world has
slowed down and mobile advertising is its next frontier. To succeed,
Google needs users to go online and, hopefully, eyeball the ads. That
is why the only thing you need to key in when you start up a new N1 is
your Gmail account information.
Immediately, my Gmail, Google contacts, Google calendar, Google Talk
and even photos previously uploaded on Picasa Web were synched with my
phone over the air, in minutes. I use the word synched, not downloaded,
because in the Google world, your data is stored in Google’s Internet
cloud and not on the handset.
But a combination of fast 3G speeds and excellent software from
Google means that you will not be able to tell the difference. The flip
side of having data stored on Google’s cloud, however, means that
Google can access your data, through software bots trawling your
account to know you better – and push targeted advertising to you. (We
trust Google to live up to its motto and do no evil.)
The iPhone is a very different creature. It started off as the first
iPod with a phone line and, today, is best described as a hybrid. You
can get e-mail over the air, download tons of apps on the fly and still
cable-synch your iTunes music library, contacts and calendars between
phone and PC. The iPhone is not a full Web-only device.
So if you already live in the Google world like me, Android is the
best choice because Google’s own apps like Gmail and Google Talk work
best on this OS.
But if you love your iTunes music library and cannot live without
your iPod, or if you are uncomfortable with storing most of your data
on the cloud, then without a doubt, go for the iPhone.