My 2022 in Tech

A few years back, I switched from an iPhone (the SE that looked like a 5S) to using a Google Pixel 3a. The phone was so great that my wife also switched (iPhone 6S to Pixel 3a) (it helped that our batteries were on their way out and the trade-in deal Google had was pretty tremendous).

Two years ago, I decided to go from 3a to Pixel 5 pretty much for two very stupid reasons to get a new phone:

  1. The size (just a smidge taller than the iPhone SE).
  2. The color (a beautiful sparrow's egg/sea foamy color).

There's a part me of the thinks the Pixel 5 is almost very nearly the perfect phone. Great hand-feel, decent screen, good cameras, great battery life (even after two years)...very nearly perfect. I bring that up because, despite thinking the Pixel 5 is very nearly perfect, when my wife's 3a started acting a fool, the timing was just right for her to move on - our carrier offered a free Pixel 6 if we added a line. Doing this allowed her folks to leave their carrier and hop onto our plan, but also for her to get a new phone at no cost. This, or course, made me feel like "Well I want a new phone too!", and luckily our carrier had another deal that allowed me to do something I never thought I'd do: Take a Samsung for a spin.

I traded in my wife's old 3a to get a Samsung S22 for essentially half-off. I regretted it almost immediately. While the device itself was lovely to look at and touch & hold, using it was an experience I cursed almost daily. Rotten battery life, shit-ass software, terrible Bluetooth connectivity (who complains about that?!), stupid settings... I hated the thing and it honestly brought me down, I felt like I made a huge mistake (I still had my Pixel 5, but I was determined to give the S22 a fair shake).

A month into owning the S22, something unexpectedly delightful happened: I got an email from our carrier basically saying "You know how you got that phone half-off? Well check this out - it's free now! You don't have to do anything, but we're paying off the rest because of a new promotion." That brought me a little bit of joy, but I still hated the thing and was already looking forward to seeing what Google would offer for trade-in of the S22 when the Pixel 7 was announced.

Turns out, Google was going to give me about 95% of the post-tax price of the Pixel 7 for my S22, and so four months into owning a phone I hated-that-ended-up-being-free, I jumped ship one more time and I haven't looked back. The Pixel 7 is a bit bigger and heavier than the Pixel 5, but the camera is spectacular, the batter life is phenomenal, the've never had connectivity like this!

And so I'd just like to know: For all y'all Samsung diehards - why? What is it about the phone you enjoy? Going from iPhone to Pixel was fairly easy - the smallest of learning curves to enjoy quite a bit more freedom (customizably speaking). Going from Pixel to Samsung was this challenge that had no payoff. Something that would take one or two taps on Pixel or iPhone took three or four on the S22. I suppose there's greater control over certain things like camera settings, but when it comes down to it, I just want to open the camera, take a picture, and have it look good with minimal fuss.

Other than this crazy phone journey I went on this year, not much else happened in tech for me, but now that I have that out of my system, I can go into 2023 with an open heart and open mind.


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