How Apple could answer Samsung's anti-iPhone ad

By Jonny Evans

Samsung's latest Galaxy SII TV ad is an attack on iPhone lovers, slamming the Apple [AAPL] smartphone's sub-4-inch screen size and its lack of 4G support, but, now the gloves are off, how might Apple attack Samsung?

[ABOVE: Samsung's iCult-attacking anti-iPhone ad.]

A pocketful of malware

Apple might begin by taking a look at malware statistics. Security vendors of all stripes agree that the Android OS is a magnet for hackers and ID thieves, partially because Google doesn't pay much attention to security.

McAfee recently claimed the amount of malware infecting Android devices during the third quarter grew almost 37 percent from the second quarter. Malware variants include Trojans, telephone recording apps and more.

Apple quite rightly could poke fun at Samsung by dubbing these devices "A pocketful of malware."

People with lives

Android OS updates are confusing. They're becoming slightly more regular, but how do you know which update applies to you?

How can you tell if your carrier or device maker will ever choose to enable an update for your device, and in the event they do enable it, will your phone run all the promised features? You just don't know, unless you're deeply immersed in reading all the Android blogs to find out. That's not so great for people with lives.

Then there's all the usual problems which afflict users who do upgrade -- text messages disappear, contacts get crunched, calendars are munched and more. When these things happen to Apple devices, they generate global coverage. On Android, it's path of the course. And they say Apple does reality distortion.

Don't forget that today's super-duper Android smartphone may not even be eligible for future software upgrades. If you want a device Apple will support for a few years with software patches that just works, then you'll probably choose an iPhone, the device for "people with lives", Apple might say.

You'll use an iPhone

Analyst Gene Munster reckons that from launch in July 2008 and the end of September 2011, Apple's App Store generated 18.6bn app downloads with a total gross revenue of $4.9bn. However, since its launch in October 2008, Android Market has achieved 6.8bn downloads, for just $341.8m of gross revenues.

There's fewer apps available for Android. Why? Because it's a less compelling developer proposition because there isn't much money in it. Also, for all its market share, many people don't use apps on their smartphone, well, beyond Twitter and Facebook.

When it comes to browsing on that Samsung 4-inch screen, well all you need to do is take a look at Web stats to see that most Android users don't actually use their devices for that. This is why iOS, with its comparatively smaller market share, dominates mobile browser usage.

If you're serious about an app experience, and want to avoid nasty malware attacks, you still only have one serious choice. Apple could point out that "You'll use an iPhone".

Battery life

Here's a tip: All that 4G (only useful in small pockets of the world) and that great big screen on Samsung's new device? it's going to crunch through battery life. Just like an iPhone you'll recharge it daily.

One day someone will bring a better battery tech to market, on that day the debate concerning battery life can begin, right now you're looking at a pretty even playing field. I think most manufacturers should avoid battery life comparisons for now, don't you? Meanwhile here's some battery life extension tips.

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