PhoneDog editor choses Nokia Lumia 900 over HTC One S–“I need a tool, not a toy”

Sydney Myers prefers the Zen of Windows Phone ownership over the chaos of Android.

This is not the biggest news story in the world, but it is of course the kind of news we like to hear.

Sydney Myers is an editor over at and a Windows Phone user.  She has previously used Android and enjoyed her Windows Phone user experience, but was tempted in switching back to Android by the rampant customization options the OS allows.

She picked up a HTC One S and started customizing, and quickly found this was an endless hole into which can easily suck up your time and in fact reduce your enjoyment of your device.

She writes

In the beginning, it was great. I created a simple but fun design and it was pretty cool. Sure, it took a couple of hours every day for a week to complete it, but it looked good. After a few weeks, though, I grew tired of it. It was my first design so it wasn’t very complex and I felt the need to spruce it up. I tried a couple of new things, then scrapped the design completely and started the tedious task over from scratch. I searched though new widget creation apps, apps that allow you to create completely custom widgets. I scoured five different wallpaper apps. I downloaded a new launcher. I went through a couple of different designs and never felt satisfied with one. This is where the trouble set in.

The customization drove me crazy, and not in a good way. I spent hours every day for weeks simply trying to find a good wallpaper, a good clock widget (or design my own), or an icon pack I liked, even downloading custom fonts for my text widgets. There’s so much you can do! In a way, this is great. But you know what they say, too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. I spent so much time trying to create a design that appealed to me and I never settled on one. Finally, I gave up. ‘I don’t need this!’ I thought. Why don’t I just use an OS that actually appeals to me aesthetically?

This is when Sydney decided Windows Phone was in fact the OS for her.

Which brings me back to the reason I switched to Windows Phone in the first place – I like the way it looks. I don’tneed to change it because I don’t want to. Yes, there are things about Android that I really enjoy and will miss. (In fact, I’m still trying to find a simple design that will make the phone usable since I’m not ready to give up just yet. The thing is, now that I’ve seen what I can do, I just can’t go back to Sense 4 with a grid of icons and a few widgets.) But the fact that I can customize it so much makes it more of a distraction than an actual tool. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but honestly, I need a tool, not a toy. Android is fun. It’s cool. It’s open and free. But I don’t have time to care about all of that. I need a phone I can pick up and use. Windows Phone is exactly that and it manages to be seductively attractive in the process. It has all the apps I need, it has a fantastic and effective UI, and it has incredibly useful features like live tiles, Local Scout, the ability to pin pretty much any part of an app or the app itself to my Start screen, Microsoft Office integration, Bing Search, and more.

After extensive experience with both Android and Windows Phone, I feel I can honestly say that there are few things (outside of areas influenced by personal preference) that Android does better than Windows Phone. In some areas, perhaps some influenced by my personal preferences, Windows Phone is better.

While Sydney’s choice may be personal, and it is clear Android seduces many more users than Windows Phone, it remains of note than Windows phone users are just happier with the handsets.  After all the HTC One X still only has 18 reviews on Amazon, of which a quarter are One star scores, suggesting many Android users, for all the customizability of the handsets, simply hate their experience, but are unable to articulate why.

We suggest they try a Windows Phone handset and find a happier place.

Read Sydney’s full post at PhoneDog here.