My Life in the Apple Ecosystem

My Life in the Apple EcosystemMy adventures with Apple began when I was around 10 years old and I got my very first iPod, the nano second generation. It had 2 GB of storage and it was the greatest thing I had ever used up to that point. My library was relatively small at the time, so that 2 GB got further than it would today. But I liked how easy it was to play those songs that I loved on demand and on the go. Our family made quite a few trips back then since a lot of family lived far across the Midwestern area of the states, so having that was crucial to my soon-to-be digital life.

Eventually, Apple came out with the iPod touch. My sister and dad had gotten ones for their birthdays and I was still with my little nano. Well, soon enough, I ended up getting the second generation. It was the thing that truly got me into iOS. I loved the simplicity that other players seemed to lack. The fact that it had a touch interface made me ecstatic to have it. I even got some of those simple games that were available back in the day. I started getting more and more addicted to my iPod touch.

Well, after a while, my desire for the latest tech started up. I got the fourth generation iPod touch. The camera wasn’t great, but it was very mobile. My friends and I took advantage of the FaceTime feature that came with iOS 4.0. When I was at home playing a game, for example, a friend and I were able to take advantage of multi-player options. FaceTime enabled us to know what was happening on both ends. Music management has been nice on all of the iPods I’ve worked with; finding the tracks I want is super easy.

Our family is quite Apple-oriented. When the iPhone 4 came out with all of its wonderful features, I made it a goal to save up for one. My iPod and flip phone were going to be shoved into a single device with better features. On October 14th, 2011, I got really lucky. I had gone to the Best Buy closest to our home and it was completely out of stock. But when we got to the next closest store, there were two white ones left. So, on that day, I got a white iPhone with 16 GB. As with my previous experiences, I loved it. I didn’t have to have a phone and an iPod with me in order to get both functionalities. Not only that, but I could be anywhere and have Internet (provided that AT&T decided to work).

My experience with a Macintosh laptop began when my sister let me use hers to work on something. The thing that was significant here: I caught on to more than half the gestures within the first 30 minutes. It just felt like how I expected something to work. It wasn’t like a PC at all, yet it was so intuitive. I was hooked. Well, Christmas rolled around and I got my hands on a mid-2010 MacBook white unibody (you know, the one they no longer sell). I fell in love with it. I didn’t look back at all on the PC I had before. The Mac just ran everything I needed without an issue. It all got better when Lion came out, introducing all its good stuff. The newer gestures were great and I learned them quickly. I ran the basic little games I had on it and had great FPS on them. I even made over 20 videos with iMovie. The software was perfectly integrated.

Since I was already getting a lot of Apple products, the Apple TV was something I desired. In June, I purchased the little guy. I was very happy at how easy it was to set up, and how I only needed power, an HDMI connection, and, because I have a 5.1 system, I was able to go optical on the audio. It has a very simple UI and works very well on my network. AirPlay is nice when I want to listen to Pandora on my Mac or on my iPhone. Netflix is also nicely laid out on it. I think it is probably the cleanest Netflix UI that I have seen. I sometimes wish there was a little more software loaded on it, but I think that what it currently has is sufficient. iTunes rentals are actually less painful than I imagined. The Apple TV gets the movie or TV show streamed seamlessly on my network.

With this many Apple products, the inevitability of being called a fanboy occurred. A lot of Android and Windows users seemingly had fun picking on me just because of a decision I made with my money! I would get comments about how bad Apple is and how overpriced it is every time I whipped out an Apple device to do something. It gets pretty old. I never really said much about Android, but I certainly heard a lot of not-so-nice things about Apple. I know my computer and phone are probably not the best out there, but I love them. I don’t love them for the specs. I love them because they work, they get what I need done, and I honestly don’t really want to make the switch to the Android market. I give credit to the Android and Windows platforms; they are nice operating systems, they just offer completely different experiences. Are you an Apple user? If so, how has life in the Apple ecosystem been for you? If you’re not an Apple user, do you give people a hard time for using Apple products for some reason or another? Let us know in the comments below!

My name is Joseph and I am a high school student who spends a lot of time near the screen. I like to work on computers and I hope I can build one someday. I am mostly an Apple user, but I don’t mind using Windows on a decent machine. Oh, did I mention I like building little circuits? Particularly the ones with bright LEDs!

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  • Sam

    Love this article! Perfectly explains us Apple users!

  • Cebastian Rosing

    Well, I try to respect everyone’s choice, but every time I get a chance, I point out a problem with Apple products. It can be a functional limit on iOS or something hardware-wise. And it’s that simple, iOS/Apple has it’s limits. And some times it’s hard to understand whyy people make that decision to be limited. but at the same time, i know it works for them, and it works very well. So it’s not like I go about and shun Apple-users, and say stuff like: “iPhone totally sucks because of X”.
    It goes well with how people know that I really dislike the company.. I know it, and they know it. And they are perfectly fine with it (to a limit of course), but I hardly ever bash on some one else’s buy. Unless of course, a situation rises, where the iProduct doesn’t shine. that’s where you make the move, and go all “Should’ve bought an Android” on them 😉
    One thing I actualy don’t understand is how people use iTunes. And how people cope with it. I think it’s complete garbage. But that’s just me, it doesn’t work for me. It’s so.. disfunctional in my head. I can’t wrap my head around it. I actually bought an iPod Shuffle a month ago (my phone was dead, and I cannot live without music, and a used 2 Gb Shuffle was the cheapest I could find). And using itunes for just a week was horrible, and slow and so bad. I don’t know if it’s because I use Windows, but I really think it’s bad.
    Now, if I, like you, got an iPod 5 years ago (or a few more), I would have grown into the system, and I’d probably be using iPoducts as well. But I didn’t, and I’m quite happy for it, it works for me, like it works for you. So we’re both happy, yes? :)
    Doesn’t mean we can’t throw a few punches, when our methods don’t stack up 😉

  • Alex Blaha

    Well I’d say it’s defiantly what you start out with. Because the OS’s are not totally compatible for each other, if you start buying games/apps for one OS then you can’t put them on the other. Therefore you stick to the one you started out with. Also just the fact that you are used to one usually means that you will stick with it. I started out with a PC running Windows XP. I have had a lot of problems with virus’ and paid a lot of money to get them fixed. Besides that I have learned a lot about Windows and PC’s because of Trial and Error which if it were a Mac I wouldn’t of learned as much. As of today I know how to build and set up a PC. I love how you can custom build a PC where in the Apple ecosystem customizing does not play a big role at all, I like PC’s because you can build them powerful and the way you want. Only problem is not everyone wants to take the time to deal with PC’s and that’s where Mac’s come in. Now for mobile phones. My mom got the first iPhone in the family, an iPhone 3G, it worked great and I instantly fell in love with it by just watching the keynote. And again all the apps we invested in made us stick to Apple devices. Now I have a iPhone 4S and am very pleased with it and still think it holds the #1 place in mobile phones to date. Since you can’t really customize the hardware of any mobile phone getting the one with the most usability and stable OS is ideal. And if I wanted more customization I could just jailbreak it. That’s my story and thoughts Apple and PC’s/Window’s.

  • ajvizz

    That’s basically my store… Got iPod Touch 2, liked it so much I got an iPhone 4 so I didn’t have to carry two devices. But I got my Macbook Pro before both.

  • Ryan Matthew Pierson

    I didn’t use Apple computers until I worked for Apple. After working there (and not being able to afford one) I made it a point to check Craigslist for deals every change I got. Eventually, I found an amazing woman that moved in with me and helped me buy my first Mac Mini. I edited my first contract video with it, and that experience inspired me to apply for a job doing video. Long story short, I changed careers and am now a happy multimedia content creator.

  • Curtis Coburn

    I like that story. Im not really a Apple fan, but when I got my iPod touch 2nd Generation I fell in love with it. It played the music I wanted it to, and it had some games on it too. I never really took advantage of everything it could do, like playing multi player games, and face time. (the 2nd generation did not even have a camera). That was the first Apple device I got.

    Then came the iPhone 3GS. At first I didn’t even know I got an iPhone until my brother said to me “You got an iPhone?” Then I looked at the box, and well, it said iPhone. I again fell in love with this iPhone, and felt that there was no use for my iPod. So I sold that one for $100.
    I still have my iPhone 3GS, and all I can say is I like it. I don’t Love it. Because it is really slow at times, and is a bit small. But I will keep it until my contract is over, and maybe I might give up having a smartphone all together, because the bill on that is really high. As you can tell, I am not someone who has a lot of money, so I can’t get all the Apple products. So, I can’t really be a fanboy.

    Now with my experience with Mac. For you it’s all great, but for me it is the opposite. Now, I don’t want to sound like I am bashing Apple in any but my experience with Mac sucks. The first time I use a Mac is when I was like 6 years old on those old iBook, or PowerBook something. They were the orange computers. Those were the worst computing experiences I ever had. When I tried to do anything, the beach ball would come up, and stop me from doing any work I wanted to do. So, most of the time I was in the computer lab at school, things were not going well. I may have spent little time doing what I was suppose to. Those Macs sucked. And that was my first experience with them.

    My second experience was at the same school, I was about 10 at this time. We were using the blue iMac. I think they were like iMac G4 or something. The experience was better, but still sucked. The computer was slow, and it would freeze up all the time. So, I had to tell my teacher about it, and she would just restart the computer.

    Now my experience with the MacBook I am using right now to type this. This is a 2006 MacBook. And I have to say, for how old this is, and how much use it has, it is still running great, and fast. I guess when Apple made the switch to Intel things got better with their computers. So, for this being how old it is, it’s a pretty good experience. But, it is slow, because it only has 1GB or RAM on it, which make so it can’t do too much things at once. I like it, but I don’t love it.

    My experience with Windows was just a lot of stupid things I did to make the computer get viruses. The viruses were my fault, so, the fault of the user, I can’t say too much bad about Microsoft, because I did stupid things.

    There is my experience with computers. This is the longest comment I ever made.

  • Sander Zagema

    Great article! I got my first Apple device 2 years ago; an iPhone 3G that was already 2 years old back then. Despite it being slow I loved it, and I still do.
    A few months ago I purchased an iPad 3th gen. The same great experience, just 10x faster. Simple. intuitive and snappy.
    Now, I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with Android or Windows. I actually use a Windows laptop. I haven’t got much experience with Android, what I do think though is that manufacturers mess up the OS quite badly by putting their own awful skins on top of it, which makes it sluggish and the support is horrible. (People complain about Apple because they support their devices for ‘only’ 2 years, while other brands give just 1!)

    I haven’t got a lot of experience with OS X either, but the experience I do have with the OS is very positive, hopefully I will be able to afford a Mac in a few years.

    For me, buying an Apple product is not a rational decision, but an emotional one.

  • Andrew

    Not the best narrative but an Apple fanboy nonetheless so OK in my books. Apple has spawned an entire culture of fanboys(girls) with its products. Youtube unboxings and product reviews are the norm now- the best advertising a company can get. And it’s free. Apple = greatest (and recently, richest, company alive).

  • Denney Masters

    I got my first Apple device this year. I got the new Ipad 32GB and I love it. Best tablet by a long shot. However I cannot stand the iphone its just far too small and too expensive.

  • qwarthon

    yeah, I love that everything just works. Just the other day I went to the apple store to get a dvi adapter, and at first I was kind of scared if it was the wrong gender port, but no, it works perfectly and the only problem I have with it is with the full screen mode for apps. I just wish you could run one one one display and another on the other display. Other than that, it works perfectly. btw, my first iPod was the first gen one when I was 7

  • adogover

    I hadn’t really had any experience with Macs in a long, long time . . . . I recall playing Marathon, Bungee’s nice FPS precursor to Halo, so whatever that came out on. The 3G really changed my mind about interacting with gadgetry. The marriage of design and functionality was something I wasn’t really prepared for. I skipped 3GS, went for 4, and am currently sitting on a 4S that I’m loving . . . I’ll be resisting the next iteration at all costs. I simply must get a couple of years out of this thing.

    This is coming from a long time windows user. Since my first real contact with computers in my small town growing up, I’d spent my time almost entirely on PC’s, though never quickly adopting expensive upgraded OS’s (indeed I sit typing on a PC running XP). I hadn’t had any contact with modern Mac’s until last year, when I took up a job with a film production company. It was a radical career change for me, compounded by the fact that I was going in on day one to sit down to a machine I was utterly unaccustomed to. Lion had just been rolled out.

    I took no time at all for me to fall in love . . . of all the headsplitting, trial and error lessons I’d learned over the years on a PC, I’d never enjoyed myself near as much just figuring out how to use something. It was a tiny little Mac Mini that runs superbly, and any little speedbumps I’ve hit along the way have been surprisingly minor. So my affair at work and a new iPad around the house, I guess I can finally be counted a fan. So I’ve done my research, and am about to enact a plan. I’ll be acquiring a mid-2010 Macbook Pro to replace my last home PC. I’ve already acquired the necessary tools, and I’m now gathering components to replace the spinning drive with a 1T, replace the optical drive with a 256 SSD (for apps and processes), and fit each into appropriate external housing.

    So I suppose I’ll be crafting my own taste of life in the Appleverse. I’ll let you know how it goes.

  • SpyderBite

    10 years old and your first device was a Nano? I’m really feeling old now. But, while my first Apple purchase was an Apple IIc, I didn’t start an Apple Eco-System until I got my iPhone in 2010. Now, I have my iPhone, MacBook Pro & iPad. I am very fond of the Windows platform as it was a huge part of my professional life.. but, I have grown to adore the seamless cohesion between my Apple products. No third party syncing apps or services required to keep my contacts, calendars, music and books consistent on all of my computing devices.

    I realize that Android (via Google) and Microsoft offer a similar experience. But, I’m not interested in making Live or Gmail my “home base” for my computer and mobile devices.

    The great thing about technology today is that everybody has choices. It wasn’t until 2010 that I was able to discard my corporate issued Blackberry for example. So, there really isn’t any reason for people to point fingers and laugh at Android, Microsoft or Apple “fanboys”. We’re all using technology that works for us as individuals. If one were superior than the rest for everybody’s needs.. well, then we wouldn’t have any choices. And I don’t want to live in that kind of world.