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I love my Apple products. I’ve used Macs since day one. My desk right now has on it my MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iPad Air, Thunderbolt Display and iPhone. Oh, and an Apple Bluetooth keyboard and Magic Trackpad, of course.

My friends are convinced that I’m incapable of leaving the house without my iPad, and I have to confess that the evidence is on their side. My car has an iPhone dock so I can listen to music and podcasts. If I’m on a plane, train or tube, it’s a near-certainty that I’ll be using my iPad or listening to music on my iPhone – or both.

I love Apple hardware design. Sleek, minimalistic, beautiful. There aren’t that many other really attractive laptops out there, and most of the ones that are have essentially copied Apple’s designs … 

I love OS X and iOS. Not everything about them, of course: there are glitches and anoyances, and iOS in particular is showing its age a little with the lack of live data on the homescreen, but both Just Work. Windows 8 is pretty good, but just the other day helping a friend update her CV on her Windows laptop, I was reminded of just how many nice touches I take for granted in OS X.

I love the seamlessness of iCloud. Again, we all know it’s not perfect, but it’s still incredibly impressive that syncing is now something that happens, rather than something I have to do. Ninety-nine percent of the time, I can pick up any of my iDevices, and the same, up-to-the-minute information will be on each.

I also really like Apple as a company. The reason the products are so good is precisely because Apple has strong values around quality, attention to detail and refusal to compromise. I love the fact that Apple concentrates on doing a small number of things very well, and doesn’t do what most companies in its position would do and slap an Apple logo on everything from baseball caps to cars.

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I love the fact that Apple supports its technology with real people. Admittedly not everyone lives within easy reach of an Apple Store, but for those who do, anyone can wander in, ask the dumbest question and get individual help, free of charge. Compare that to attempting to get help with a Windows laptop or Android phone, and there is just no comparison.

So why, then, would I feel even a tiny bit embarrassed to be seen using them? Three reasons …

I was in a certain well-known coffee store the other day, and I paused from what I was writing to look around. The first thing I noticed was that almost every single customer was using an electronic device, busily immersed in a smartphone, tablet or laptop. Second, out of around 30 devices in use, I think only three or four of them didn’t have an Apple logo. In central London, at least, it seems the default choice.

Perhaps I’m being snobbish, but I can remember when spotting someone else using a Mac was almost an event. We were the unusual ones, the ones who had given the matter more thought, and were prepared to step out of the mainstream and buy something that was, honestly, at the time, a bit eccentric. People would ask you why.

ipad

But hey, I can live with being one of the masses (for a certain demographic value of masses, anyway). The second reason is the fashionista thing.

Apple has a lot of discerning customers. People who are perfectly well aware of the alternatives, know full well how the prices of competitor products compare and have made a choice to pay a premium price for a superior product. The type of people you’d find reading 9to5Mac, in fact.

But even I have to agree with my Apple-ribbing friends that there are those … other type of Apple customers. The sheeples, as they are unkindly dubbed. The type of people who buy Apple because it’s expensive and fashionable, and because they have no clue what else is out there.

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Perhaps worse than the fashionista, though, are the third reason: the fanbois.

Don’t misunderstand me: I don’t use the term to describe people who love Apple products. I’m one of those. By fanbois, I mean those who are so utterly fanatical about it that they will scream and shout and stamp their feet if anyone so much as dares to level the slightest hint of criticism at Apple, or to say anything even vaguely complimentary about Windows or Android.

I’d rather not be mistaken for a fashionista (though perhaps my dress sense saves me there). I would most definitely not like to be mistaken for a fanboi. It was in that coffee shop when I realised I might, to the casual observer, have given that impression. The wifi was hopeless, so when I needed to google something, I pushed aside my MacBook Air, and got out my iPad Air to do the search. At which point, with perfect timing, someone called me – on my iPhone. I did feel just a twinge of embarrassment about sitting at a coffee shop table simultaneously using three pieces of Apple technology.

I supposed I should just have been grateful I couldn’t yet be wearing an iWatch …

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163 Responses to “Opinion: Why I love Apple products, and am just a tiny bit embarrassed to be seen using them”

  1. LOL this was a cute/funny article. But I don’t get why you’d be embarrassed. Thats how it is with me in public lol But i take pride in my ability to select tech of superior quality. I too have used mac since they came out in 1984 up until now :-)

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  2. Luis Lopes says:

    Almost every Apple new costumer feels the same way.

    The fact stronger than every argument is that, even if Apple products were ugly, i`d still buy them!!
    OSx is way better than any other Operative System in the market !

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  3. yea this was a good one, and i would prob feel the same as you in that coffee shop. but really it shows how you understand whats going on in tech now a days. your going to be the most connected and synced when all of your devices are in the same ecosystem, it sucks because the average joe isn’t going to know that. Also you kinda make it sound like you liked being that guy that didn’t want to use that device or brand that everyone else was using, i use to be the same way with the iPod and mini disk players lol, but now that every one basically has a iPhone you get to use proprietary features iOS offers more often…

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  4. Air Burt says:

    If someone walked into my house and saw all the Apple products I have, they’d think I’m a fanboi. Apple products just work for me and do exactly what I need.

    Btw: Mac Mini, 15″ MacBook Pro, 6th-gen 160GB iPod Classic, 3rd-gen iPad, iPhone 5, 4th- & 5th-gen AirPort Extreme, 2 AirPort Expresses, Apple TV and a table I made out of a sheet of glass and 2 old Mac Pro towers!

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  5. Len Williams says:

    Unfortunately Ben, you seem to be supporting and making a strong case FOR all the stereotypical slurs aimed at Apple users by Apple haters over the last 20 years. I disagree strongly with your opinion and discomfort at the possibility that someone might think you were “one of those types of Apple users”. Who cares what they think. You’ve fallen prey to the black PR campaign that’s been waged against Apple to make us out to be air-headed, tragically hip imbeciles who buy Apple products only to look cool.

    While Apple’s popularity in the iPhone/iPad department is undeniable, the vast majority of people I know still use Windows and Android devices. Not only that, this category of ignorant Apple fanboy/fanboi is, as far as my own experience is concerned, an entirely fictional entity. Not once have I ever met an Apple user who has fit the description of the type that buys Apple products simply to “be fashionable” or “because it’s expensive”.

    I admit that the possibility exists that there are indeed vapid and empty-headed Apple users, just as there are vapid and empty-headed Windows/Android users — but these same people will be as vapid and empty-headed about everything else in their lives, because that’s where they live.

    I have personally never met the type of show-off, know-nothing Apple user that fanbois are advertised to be. My experience has taught me completely the opposite, that Apple users tend as a group to be intelligent, well-educated people who know exactly what they’re buying and why. Maybe I just have a higher quality of friends and acquaintances, but I don’t really think so.

    Apple, in the eyes of haters, can NEVER do anything right. If products don’t sell well, they say “See, no one buys them”. If products sell by the boat load, they say “Oh you’re only buying it to follow the crowd.”

    I’m sorry you feel uncomfortable and even slightly apologetic about being an Apple user. Personally I don’t give a rat’s behind about what Apple haters may think about the devices I use. Technology and brand loyalty are a personal choices. We’re never going to change their minds, and being embarrassed about your devices is simply wasted effort.

    My advice: FLAUNT your Apple products. Revel in their beauty, durability, functionality and ease of use. Take pride that you love your products and made smart decisions. Remember that intelligent and rational people embrace the idea of tolerance and personal choice. Disregard the barbs and invitations to introvert.

    Don’t knuckle under to the knuckleheads. iPhone, iPad, iPod and Mac your way contentedly through life — or make a personal choice and move to Windows and Android so you don’t feel so embarrassed.

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  6. haha awesome article! i totally can relate to everything you say in there! and god! those fashionista sure do get on my nerves… i believe that if you buy a certain product, you should know why you want it and what it can do!

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  7. Amanda Derr says:

    As a graphic designer I’ve had to use Apple computers as far back as when they looked like a 1952 Philco. Today I work in sculpture and have to confess to a secret pleasure going down to the local coffee shop and modeling a piece of clay while everyone else is immersed in their various electronica. Talk about looks. Clay; the new Apple.

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  8. Well, this Apple fan must compliment you on the artistry of this article…and here I am talking about the images and text, which look gorgeous on my 15″ retina Macbook Pro.
    Hugh Massengill, Eugene

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  9. None of your arguments actually explain why you feel a tiny bit embarrassed to be seen using Apple products. If you, as a perfectly normal user of Apple products, can so easily tell all these stereotypes apart from the “real” normal users (given that your actual problem is that you could be mistaken for any of them), why can’t you rest assured that others will realise you’re the real deal also?

    I’m not sure your article actually serve up your point. I could even stretch as far as claiming the opposite. You’ve put yourself above all other Apple users, and by that also making yourself part of one of the stereotypes you despise: The “real” Apple user, which of course always sits above those you mentioned (possibly below those who were “real Mac users before it was cool”.).

    My rant has now become a mess, much like your article, and all those hundreds of identical articles out there over the last couple of years.

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  10. So you’re a hipster

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  11. I know what you mean about the “fanbois.” I used to be one. But back in the mid-90’s you HAD to be, if you were going to be an Apple user. The whole world was on Windows 95, and Apple was putting out overpriced beige boxes with an OS that was really showing its age. Only idiots like me could stay the course, frothing at the mouth and damning Microsoft with every other breath. A Darwinian process winnowed out the non-fanbois. Once Apple got its act together, after Jobs returned, I could start to relax. Now that their market share is solid and their future assured, Apple can be just a choice for me, rather than a religion.

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  12. I understand this embarrassment – I live in “fully-Android” environment. When I bought my first iPhone 2 years ago my friends and colleagues were really surprised, I can’t forget their astonished faces and silent comments like “Oh, you bought an iPhone? Why?”. They weren’t surprised though when somebody bought Samsung or HTC or any other Android device. In fact in those cases they acted like they hadn’t notice that somebody changed phone.
    So I think when someone buys Apple device then he should be prepared for comments and attention.

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  13. Rob Homewood says:

    You know I’ve been considering getting a mac as I’m a game developer and I want to be able to publish to iOS. The more I think about it and let myself get into the idea of it and the infrastructure, the happier I feel about it. Traditionally I think there has been a lot of hate towards the whole ‘Apple’ thing but I think that’s just the antithesis of the ‘Fanboi’ and is just typical of the types that comment hatred on youtube etc..

    Quite frankly I don’t think there is much out there on the market that can quite meet Apple’s products in terms of design. Well their computers anyways. I’m personally not so fond of their tablets and phones but I’ve really searched quite hard and its pretty difficult to find a laptop that can meet their attention to design.

    The hardware on both the 15″ and 13″ mbp is just incredible. especially the 15″ I think. The thing that a lot of ‘gamers’ get pissed off about is specs and it’s not difficult to see why. The technical specs on it’s core components are just simply not at all in line with their pricing. period. Graphics card power is not anywhere near an equivalently priced pc. Nor is the processor or the speed of the ram.. or the hard drive.

    But try to find something in the price range of the mbp that is designed as well (I’m mostly not talking about aesthetics here) at the same price and you will struggle. The Razor Blade looks really nice.. but they just literally copied the mac.. literally.

    The X-1 Carbon is probably the only thing I’ve found that comes close. but that’s only if you don’t take into account the software…

    I don’t think most people who own macs appreciate them tho. I’ve just finished my course at uni (in Virginia) and walking around the student center most people had macs. I really don’t think most of them appreciated or used them to their fullest. its just what ‘you’re supposed to have’ for many people.. I think that’s sad. Maybe that’s just me though. It just seems like although Apple is the ‘superior’ product, its no longer the ‘premium’ product.

    Actually something I’ve been thinking for a while is that surely there is room in the market for a new ‘premium’ laptop. Like if you wanna buy a laptop you spend $500 and you get enough for most need. If you’re in a business then maybe you spend $800 and get something a little better. If you’re a gamer then you spend $1500 on an Asus or MSI rig. And then you buy a mac ranging from $1000 – $2500 if you can afford it/need it for logic/ios dev/finalcut.

    But what then? what happens if you want to drop $15,000 on a laptop? (I can’t even afford a 13″ mbp atm so I’m not talking about myself here hehe) What can you get? A gold plated macbook air… :( I disapprove.

    Seriously, what is there? Like why is there no strata of ULTRA high end laptops? Maybe there is and I just haven’t found it yet? What about military grade laptops (I’m assuming their aesthetics won’t be as good).

    What about a battery that lasts a week and fits into a mb air/ super thin? What about a graphics card that’s cooled using some crazy thing and is clocked at crazy levels with stupid amounts of ram?

    I just think it’s incredible that the absolute high end is within grasp of typical consumers.. that’s not how the automobile industry is?

    I’m just ranting now so I apologize. If anyone can correct me on this issue, please do I’m really interested to know what else is out there?

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  14. read that twice, still could not get the point about being embarrassed. is it only me? what is he trying to say?

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  15. Great article!! I at times feel the exact same way when I am sitting in coffee shops!!

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  16. Oddly enough, it’s the lunatic Android fanboys I encounter almost daily on the internet that make me want to hide my Android phone in my pocket most of the time. They’re so… angry…

    I try to hide behind a statement like “just so you know, I’m typing this on a Samsung when I say that they’re both good platforms and they both have their strengths and weaknesses, and I think your raving attacks on people who choose a different phone than you is pretty unreasonable, and also, you’re insulting my wife” But its no good. Call them on their madness and they go even madder, and not even my effing ginormous Note 3 can shield me from their bile.

    Don’t worry, I’m typing this on a Retina macbook pro while I warm my feet on a mac pro :)

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  17. I agree. I have always used macs. Bought a 13″ retina last year and it has been a rockstar. My girlfriend has a PC laptop and she is constantly fighting viruses. The mac just works and the retina screen looks great. I will always pay more to get a tool that just…works.

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  18. Thanks for sharing this interesting article with us. I guess each and every apple customer has same feeling. But I like apple products because Apple stays at least two years ahead of its competitors and they offer great customer service and in-store experiences. Moreover iPhone app development is currently in trend as Apple is one the most valuable brands in the world. People like me really want to build carrier in it.
    Thanks

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  19. I am 43. I have used Apple computers since I was in middle school. The first computer I used was an Apple IIe. Later on my parents bought me an used Apple IIe, and was my first computer. In the early 90s I owned an all in on McIntosh and then an Apple clone. I have only willingly purchased one windows machine during my college years, and boy did i regret that. After that one mistake, I have alway owned macs. I have a MacBook Air, mac mini, iMac, iPad and iPhone. I have been a mac user when it was viewed as a cult. We were the rebels, the ones who saw beyond the normal. Now many of the windows people have moved to macs, but still don’t understand what it is to be a “Mackie”. I don’t care what anyone says, there is nothing like a mac, there is no operating system like OS X. Windows is and will always be a hazzle.

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  20. I only developed an appreciation for Apple over the last couple years since my girlfriend introduced me to it but it seriously took over everything with its effortlessness. It started with a cheap little MacBook on Craigslist, then I got tired of my Android phone heating up and discharging the battery for no reason and replaced that with an iPhone. Now I’ve replaced my windows workstation with an iMac and an iPad, and they all work perfectly in sync- a feat that was totally impossible with my Galaxy S Note 10.1, HTC phone and Windows. Just the time saved in effortless syncing alone has easily paid for the premium price of Apple products. What’s more, using them is a joy. It’s enjoyable to go to work and use the trackpad on my MacBook for everything from surfing to drawing beaker curves in Illustrator, never once feeling the need for a mouse.

    I don’t care what other people use. I used to prattle on about how much better android was myself and spend hours and hours tearing my hair out with home brew mods- until I actually tried something else. I can’t put a custom rom on my iPhone but I can go to Starbucks with nothing but my MacBook and gets shit done, do it comfortably, and then go home to my big iMac screen and pickup right where I left off without a second thought. That’s awesome right there.. That’s productivity.

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