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Apple's First Evangelist On Why He Ditched iOS. Meet Guy Kawasaki

iOS 6 has turned a lot of people against the Apple ecosystem, myself included. What’s interesting though is how far the disdain for the closed garden has gone. Enter Guy Kawasaki — Apple’s first evangelist, current Apple Fellow and the man who was involved on the ground floor with the first Macintosh computer. We caught up with him in Sydney to find out about his new daily driver and why he’s turned on iOS.

Also: Developers Cubed: Guy Kawasaki On How To Score App Funding

Guy Kawasaki joined Apple in 1983 and started working as the company’s chief evangelist. It was his job to shill the first Macintosh, and he did a pretty good job. He left to do his own thing in 1987 and since then has held roles as a venture capitalist, speaker and author.

He’s on record saying that the first time he laid eyes on the Macintosh, he fell in love. The next piece of tech he fell as deeply in love with was Google+, which he’s since written a book about. So what does Guy Kawasaki — a dyed in the wool Apple guy — love now?

“Android,” he says, almost sheepishly.

I was stunned. How does this guy who got in on the ground floor of Apple only to turn on them years later? He went on to explain, and after he did, I saw his position. Guy’s problem is with the walled-garden approach to iOS.

I love Android. Samsung gave me a phone so, full disclosure and everything. I love NFC, I love the fact that you can have a live widget that shows you emails. You can’t do that on an iPhone.

Up until a week ago, your best case for a week ago was [a device] with 3G, but I’ve had 4G/LTE on my Android phone for months and months. That’s usually about 10 times the difference when you look at speeds of four megabits compared with 40 megabits.

There’s just little things, too, like if I want to make Chrome my default browser, I do it. I click on a link and now it boots Chrome. On that thing, he says as he points in disgust at my iPhone, “you have Safari and that’s it.” You can put other browsers on there, but when you click on a link it won’t launch them. It’s those kinds of things.

Guy doesn’t even own an iOS device anymore — not unless you count the loan iPhone 5 Vodafone lent him for participating in the telco’s App Aid competition last week.

I thought his objections would stop at software, but no. Guy is very particular when it comes to the gear he uses. He’s not at all a fan of 10-inch tablets, and doesn’t understand people’s objections to 7-inch gear.

“Why?” I asked curiously. Because 10-inch hardware is out to hurt you, he replied.

I think the size of [the Nexus 7] is perfect. I love the size. I think that 10.1-inches is just a little too big for me for reading. My test for a tablet is that if you fall asleep and the device hits your face, does it hurt you? The seven-inch doesn’t and the ten-inch does, so that’s my test!

So if Apple can’t keep one of its earliest employees happy with what it’s doing with software and hardware, what hope does it have of retaining other die-hard fans going forward?


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