Turns Out We Are a Samsung Family
I have been around electronics, computers, and the like both as a hobby and a career for more than 30 years. I have dealt with and used all of the major brands, most of the major operating systems, and dealt with pretty much all of the UI ideas and such. It surprised me to discover the other day that for all intense and purposes, we have become a Samsung family.
The realization came as I started to look for a new cell phone. My Samsung Note 2 LTE (LTE was a big deal at the time, a price premium idea) has served me faithfully for nearly 4 years now, it’s a great piece of equipment with (for the time) exceptionally nice display and plenty of processing power. But 4 years on, I have started to rub up against the limits of the memory (16 gig) and my son has to pick and choose the games I keep on the phone for him carefully, asking me to remove certain things so he can try others. So I started to check the market to see what was out there.
A bit of background here. My Wife and I had matching Note 2s, before she upgrades to a 10 inch Samsung S tablet that is also a phone (using headphones or bluetooth device). Our TV is a Samsung as well. Many of our extended family around the world use phones like the S5, and even an S2. My wife has considered a Samsung J series phone as her “phone calls only” addition to her tablet. Previous to my Note phone, I had an HTC, an LG, a Moto Razr, and a series of borderline phones from Nokia and other similar companies.
Also, let me say that I am not an Apple guy. I have dealt with Apple since back in the Apple ][ days, through the Lisa, the Mac, and so on. I do graphics work, I use tools like Photoshop and non linear editing. My education in those things was done on Macs… and I still went home after class and did it all on my PC. Yeah, I guess I am a windows guy. But I am also an Android guy, an Ubuntu guy, a LAMP stack guy… I am not set in my ways, I just use what I consider the right tool for the job.
So with that, I started to poke around the market to see what it what. The phone, tablet, and phablet market hasn’t moved as much as I thought it would in the time, but there are plenty more cores and plenty more memory to go around. I checked out the Apple stuff and found that, as per usual, they are big on hype but somewhat generic in product. They still want a premium price for hardware that isn’t really far enough ahead to justify it. The faithful will pay, and they do… but for the rest of us, Apple is still shrug material. There certainly is a trend to power save by having multiple processor cores that run at different speeds, so that the phone can idle using less power I guess. There are even chips out there now in use that have 10 processor cores on them. Amazing application of technology I guess.
Anyway, being in Asia these days means I also have a whole extra set of sources for phones, specifically from China. Companies like Xiaomi and Huawei have some pretty interesting products, at least on the specs scale. There are literally hundreds of little companies in China churning out all sorts of high spec phones, but many of them don’t work very well, I guess making all the parts work together is the magic.
In the end, while I have not yet purchased a new phone, I find myself attracted back to the Samsung devices. The S7 and S7 Edge seem really nice, a solid upgrade from my current phone but not a new universe, rather an improved and more polished version of what I enjoy.
Now, a bigger turn in the road has come accidentally, and convinced me that we are absolutely a Samsung family. We are currently moving into a new condo, and along with all the other things in life, the concept of a new TV came up. It actually started because the local cable company (the only one permitted to serve the new place we are moving to) is essentially offering an interest free 24 month payment plan on new 4K TVs. The only negative is that their prices are not best in the market, so they are able to sell about 10% above the “best market place” and make their money that way. One of the models they feature is a Samsung JU5900 4K set that is pretty nice to see, even when just upconverting regular HD. It’s been enough that I find myself looking to kick our existing Samsung HD TV (4 year old) to the bedroom and replace it with a 4K set. Now I find myself looking at the JU6400 model and thinking it might just be the ticket.
The point of all of this is only that technology in and of itself is nice and all, but I realize that a truly successful product line is one that offers you a level of comfortable integration that makes sense to you. Samsung is one of the largest phone and flat screen TV companies in the world for those very reasons, something that rings true with more and more people all the time. We are one big happy Samsung family hoping to add a few more little electronic friends into our lives, and shopping gets easier when you already know what you are looking for!