Why do I enjoy the Apple device ecosystem?

I have been in the IT and information security industries for my entire professional career. As recent as seven years ago I had a multiple computers lab in my house. they even had removable hard drives so I could swap out operating system versions to keep my skills current. I had various pieces of network gear to go with it. At one point I had cable and dsl Internet connections so I could test VPN tunnels and emulate complex setups.
I have worked extensively with Microsoft, Cisco and many other products and technologies over the years.
So why, if I have the skills would I end up where I am now? The only two Microsoft based products in my house are my xbox360 and my wife’s eeepc netbook. Everything else is Apple. Even my network hardware.
The simple answer is I just want it to work. A few years ago I got my my first white iPod. It was the current model at the time. The video iPod with a hard drive inside. The experience with that device at the time that podcasting was starting began my path out of the desert of user experience. The iPod just did exactly what I needed it to do. That took me into my first iMac. Now I used macs a few times in college. But I never owned one.
I had a HP designed media center that I used with my xbox360 for a media extender. But that plus it’s replacement when he first one died was the last full pc I owned for myself. Even the second one died.
I had the knowledge and the skills to maintain cheaper windows gear. But my time and frustration levels became more valuable to me. I had enough of fighting my technology at work. At home I wanted things to just work.
Look at the current generation of apple products. With a firmware update I gained AirPlay/Home Sharing to and from my devices. I have audio zones in my house based on airport express units connected to speakers. I have a second generation apple tv hooked to the large tv in my man room. I can stream audio or video from my iPhone to my tv without missing a beat. I have done with this podcast streaming apps like the twit player. It is simply amazing compared to what it was like on my commodore 64 when I was a kid. Here I am watching Leo Laporte live from his studio on my iPad, I walk upstairs push a power button and AirPlay button and it’s suddenly on my tv. How is that not amazing? I am watching a guy clear across the country LIVE on a device that feels like a legal pad and I touch something and it’s on my tv like magic.
If I am listening to an audio book in my car, I can redirect the audio to the speakers in my kitchen while I clean dishes and keep listening to my book. I don’t lose my place and listen when, how and where I want to.
Honestly this is why the “competition” for Apple cannot catch up. They are too busy worrying about what Apple is doing rather than looking at how I want to use my media and devices. That should be the target: “What is the experience the consumer/users wants? And can we make a polished stable solution?” If they can answer those two questions they might show up for the game.

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