Proof that Samsung is a Huge Apple Fanboy

Proof that Samsung is a Huge Apple Fanboy

I wrote a column last week saying that the “smoking gun” document Apple submitted into evidence in the Samsung patent infringement lawsuit does not constitute proof of infringement by itself.

Still, it’s a remarkable document that does prove something: Samsung is very impressed with Apple. In fact, it’s clear that Samsung is a huge Apple fanboy. 

Whenever there’s some kind of flame war between Android and Apple users, the conversation typically skirts around the real issues, mainly because people don’t believe in or understand the power of human nature.

Arguers focus on old PC criteria of speeds and feeds rather than post-PC criteria that is harder to quantify.

The truth is that for most Apple fans, Apple products “feel” better to use. But users don’t have the training or experience to understand what exactly makes them “feel” that way.

The late Apple CEO and founder Steve Jobs has been ridiculed by Android fans of famously calling the iPad “magical.” But what did he mean, exactly?

Android users don’t get it. And neither do iPhone and iPad users. Well, they appreciate “it,” but don’t know what “it” is.

We found out this week that Samsung gets it. Samsung really understands why Apple fans prefer iOS devices. Samsung completely understands what Jobs meant by “magical.”

The Evidence

If you’re not following the lawsuit, here’s what I’m talking about. Apple and Samsung are in federal court suing each other for patent infringement.

Apple submitted into evidence this week a 132-page, internal Samsung “Relative Evaluation Report,” which is dated March 2, 2010.

The report basically shows well over 100 functions of the iPhone (as it existed in 2010), and compares them favorably to comparable functions in the Samsung Galaxy S.

With each function, Samsung says, in effect: “This Apple feature is awesome because bla bla bla….”

It then summarizes “Directions for improvement” – how Samsung can do that function better.

In a nutshell, what this document shows is the thoughts of a rabid Apple fanboy — or a group of fanboys — who understand what makes the iOS user interface so thrilling to use, so “magical.”

It’s a list of all the ways Samsung things Apple’s user interface is better than Samsung’s.

Samsung is impressed by the little things — the kinds of things that regular Android fans dismiss as irrelevant.

Here are some examples of what Samsung believes were superior features in the iPhone’s user interface.

  • When you press and hold on text in the iOS, a magnifying glass shows an enlarged view, making it easier to move the cursor.
  • Double-tapping on a segment of something — say, a column on a page in the Safari browser — perfectly sizes that segment for easy reading.
  • Dynamic effects add “fun factor.” For example, flipping pages in the Notepad app, rising and falling focused brightness on buttons that are tapped to provide visual feedback,
  • Can’t place duplicate menus on the home screen, which prevents user confusion.
  • When you can’t or shouldn’t do something, the control becomes unusable. For example, in the Safari browser, the Add Bookmark function is disabled until the page successfully loads.
  • The iOS onscreen keyboard doesn’t overlap with buttons or elements on the screen above.
  • The iOS camera shutter animation “offsets the user’s perceived time passage.”
  • The “Loading” sign in the Safari browser is in the center of the screen, making the information unavoidable.
  • As you enter a phone number in the iOS phone dialer, the size of the font gets smaller so you can see the whole number as you dial.
  • iOS icons look identical in color and design to the open application — for example, for the Memo app.
  • The time setting in the iOS Clock app is a dial place at the bottom of the screen, so it’s easy for the user to set.
  • The current date is displayed on the iOS Calendar app icon.
  • During a call, the currently selected feature (for example the Speakerphone feature), turns blue, making it super clear to the user what’s going on.
  • The “End Call” button is very large, red and at the bottom of the call screen, so you can’t accidentally press the wrong button when you want to end a call.
  • The dots on the bottom of the iOS home screen give you feedback about how many pages you have and which page you’re on.

These are just a few of the many features Samsung was Many Android fans will dismiss these elements of polish by saying they’re irrelevant. But Samsung didn’t think they were irrelevant. Samsung thought they were so relevant that they require a host of changes to its software.

Like I said, these are little things. But it’s the little things — and lots of them — that put the “magic” in the iOS.

Android users don’t understand this. And Apple users don’t understand it, either.

But Samsung does.

  • Michael O’Morah

    I first used an iPhone 3gs and then switched to an Android Phone while waiting for the New iPhone to arrive this Fall. I despise the Android interface as there is no intuitively that connects me to thyis Phone. I used to cary my iPhone 3gs everywhere with me including to bed. I now carry my iPad with me even to bed… scandalously while my Android Phone lays useless on my Desk forgotten as I run an errand to the backyard or the Kitchen etc… I still have my iPhone 3gs and use it as an iPod and other tasks. To compensate for lack of the “Magical” in my Android it bears an Apple Sticker on its Backplate while I p[atiently await the NHew iPhone and the Amazingly User-Best Friendly iOS!

  • cshotton

    I will grant you that *most* Android users don’t understand the “magic”, because like Windows users before them, they settle for a substandard experience because they’ve not been exposed to something better. But for you to extend that generalization to Apple users smacks of a bit of arrogance on your part. I certainly understand the polish and attention to detail present in Apple’s consumer products and it is the sole deciding factor in continually choosing their products since buying an Apple ][ in 1980. As it stands, you are essentially saying “Android users are uninformed” and “Apple users are too ignorant to notice”, which I’d submit is patently untrue for a majority of Apple users who have owned more than one Apple product or been a user for more than a few months.

  • Nicholas Randio

    This is the first Elgan article I thought was well put together and very informative. Those are the little things we gloss over, but together they make the polished OS we all love so much

  • vtroks

    How about writing a story on how this Kohbag is a huge Apple fanboy?

  • vtroks

    The only thing substandard might be the UI, shiny doesn’t always mean better.

  • bfizzzle

    I hate the term fanboy

  • Steffen Jobbs

    Android fanbois love to tinker with Android by tailoring everything the way they want it to be. If they can’t do that, they feel that “big brother” is controlling them. Android fanbois hate to be controlled. It’s all about freedom of choice for them. Android fanbois don’t believe in magic. Magic is for wusses. The Droid Lovahs believe that all iOS users are ignorant because they let Apple control them by only allowing them to do but so much with their devices.

  • Tallest_Skil

    How about writing a story on how this Kohbag is a huge Apple fanboy?

    How about not being depressingly subsentient and post on websites you actually like?

  • Steven Zahl

    Many Tech companies are.

  • John Frum

    Mike Elgan thinks he’s better than most Apple users. He assumes that while he notices details like those listed above, most Apple users don’t. He assumes that when events like fonts shrinking, colors matching, etc., occur right under Apple users’ noses, they see them but don’t *observe* them, like he (and Samsung) do. He assumes they aren’t into details like he is–even as a large percentage of them are paid to observe and manipulate details.

    Mike Elgan is full of himself. Mike Elgan is full of fecal matter.

  • Kim_Chi2

    I think everyone’s missing the big point. Samsung should not get away with stealing no matter what. Hasn’t everyone here learned that in school?

  • bassamgp72

    For dial pad when numbers get smaller that was on my Philips 1997s phone so it is stolen patent. Now if I dig in my memory just lil more Im sure there will be some more stolen ideas on iPhone 1 2 3 4 and 4s did idiots realized yet that the IOS has same boring stuff after five years of releasing the first iPhone?

  • bassamgp72

    For dial pad when numbers get smaller that was on my Philips 1997s phone so it is stolen patent. Now if I dig in my memory just lil more Im sure there will be some more stolen ideas on iPhone 1 2 3 4 and 4s did idiots realized yet that the IOS has same boring stuff after five years of releasing the first iPhone? I think the iPhone is simplified for a stupid users who can’t differentiate between red or green and why they are in 2 different colors or between blue speaker icon and regular speaker icon! Simply Apple is taking advantage of stupid bucket headed people! My respect to smart readers

  • bassamgp72

    $$$$

  • markrlangston

    I agree with “cshotton”. Apple loyalists DO understand what “it” is. It’s why we still use Apple products. It’s why we (most of us) evangelize the experience of Apple products to the Windows-using masses.

    Who exactly do you think these Samsung people are that get “it”? They’re Apple loyalists like us that understand the magic behind iOS. When I use my iPhone then grab a friends’ Android phone I feel like something is missing.

    In paying closer attention to the writing and writers on this site I’m beginning to notice that you have a tendency to piss off or confuse the cultists here at CoM. I guess I can respect that but it appears to come at the price of editing and proof-reading. An article like this is hardly a breaking news story where misspellings and grammar faux pas are expected, but to see so many mistakes makes the article difficult to digest and take seriously.

  • assyrianpride

    I will grant you that *most* Android users don’t understand the “magic”, because like Windows users before them, they settle for a substandard experience because they’ve not been exposed to something better. But for you to extend that generalization to Apple users smacks of a bit of arrogance on your part. I certainly understand the polish and attention to detail present in Apple’s consumer products and it is the sole deciding factor in continually choosing their products since buying an Apple ][ in 1980. As it stands, you are essentially saying “Android users are uninformed” and “Apple users are too ignorant to notice”, which I’d submit is patently untrue for a majority of Apple users who have owned more than one Apple product or been a user for more than a few months.

    many Apple users ARE ignorant about Apple features, especially if they have never had a non-apple phone, tablet, or computer.

  • assyrianpride

    I hate the term fanboy

    it’s gay

  • Rosemar05180095

    as Jeff answered I’m taken by surprise that some one able to make $5262 in four weeks on the computer. have you read this link(Click on menu Home more information) http://goo.gl/OFjrT

  • m_hardwick

    Wow. What an insulting post. You, sir, are an idiot.

  • Alfred2612

    Mike Elgan thinks he’s better than most Apple users. He assumes that while he notices details like those listed above, most Apple users don’t. He assumes that when events like fonts shrinking, colors matching, etc., occur right under Apple users’ noses, they see them but don’t *observe* them, like he (and Samsung) do. He assumes they aren’t into details like he is–even as a large percentage of them are paid to observe and manipulate details.

    Mike Elgan is full of himself. Mike Elgan is full of fecal matter.

    Hmm. Well, the other month I accidentally left boot camp set to automatically boot into Windows 7 on my parents iMac.

    Honestly, they did not notice that it was different. I couldn’t believe it.

    Don’t underestimate some people’s capacity for being technologically illiterate ;)

  • Alfred2612

    From the article:

    “Android users don’t understand this. And Apple users don’t understand it, either.
    But Samsung does.”

    I think what Mike means to say is this:

    “Android users don’t understand this. And Apple users don’t understand it, either.
    But Samsung does [because they’re Apple Fanboys, just like us!]”

  • beijingbloke

    Fan boy is a very apt description for people who participate in these Tech wars. Take cshotton here for instance who goes and makes this wildly outrageous statement,”I will grant you that *most* Android users don’t understand the “magic”, because like Windows users before them, they settle for a substandard experience because they’ve not been exposed to something better.” Now besides being ludicrous such a statement is also impossible to substantiate and its only merit is to show that he likes nay loves apple products and thinks they are the best. That’s what fans do, ask any fan of any sports team. If you where to ask him to elaborate on that statement and actually articulate what it is that makes iOS for instance better than android he is likely to lean on Apples marketing cliches such as that it is polished, the product of world leading innovation and intuitive all of which are entirely subjective terms that anyone based on their brand loyalty could easily ascribe to products they own. Also note that he mentions this magic that non apple users are incapable of comprehending when really there is no magic. It simply boils down to him identifying on a very personal level with the kit that apple make and thereby espousing the sort of loyalty any sports fan would be familiar with.

  • beijingbloke

    Fan boy is a very apt description for people who participate in these Tech wars. Take cshotton here for instance who goes and makes this wildly outrageous statement,”I will grant you that *most* Android users don’t understand the “magic”, because like Windows users before them, they settle for a substandard experience because they’ve not been exposed to something better.” Now besides being ludicrous such a statement is also impossible to substantiate and its only merit is to show that he likes nay loves apple products and thinks they are the best. That’s what fans do, ask any fan of any sports team. If you where to ask him to elaborate on that statement and actually articulate what it is that makes iOS for instance better than android he is likely to lean on Apples marketing cliches such as that it is polished, the product of world leading innovation and intuitive all of which are entirely subjective terms that anyone based on their brand loyalty could easily ascribe to products they own. Also note that he mentions this magic that non apple users are incapable of comprehending when really there is no magic. It simply boils down to him identifying on a very personal level with the kit that apple make and thereby espousing the sort of loyalty any sports fan would be familiar with.

  • Roland P Jefferson III

    “These are just a few of the many features Samsung was Many Android fans”

    Ebonics is NOT allowed on this site!!!!

  • Seven Colour Gosips
  • Vinod

    “As you enter a phone number in the iOS phone dialer, the size of the font gets smaller so you can see the whole number as you dial.”
    Sort yourself first, Apple. Even old Nokia phones without touch had that very basic feature.

About the author

Mike ElganMike Elgan writes about technology and culture for a wide variety of publications. Follow Mike on Google+, Facebook and Twitter.

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