Editorials

Tech Specs Do Matter; here’s why

We here at Aptgadget strive to bring you the very best in mobile news, and you’ll notice (if you’ve been reading us for a while now) that we like to cover smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, tech specs of these devices, and other technology in breaking fields. We embrace technological progress, no matter the category, but I have a special love for mobile tech and the wearables space. I believe that the future of mobile tech is on the wrist, and I’ve invested in wrist gadgets to show my commitment.

Smartphones are just as loved by me as are wrist wearables, and I’m excited to see Aptgadget continue to cover all things tech.

Sadly, we live in a tech culture where certain companies have convinced consumers that “tech specs don’t matter.” After all, if Apple (for example) can optimize a small battery in the new iPhone 6s (around 1700mAh, as compared to, say, the Galaxy S6 edge+’s 3,000mAh battery) to get 10 hours of battery life or more, then why does it matter to have that 3,000mAh battery? Android consumers are known for shouting back that Apple could provide better battery life – but then, consumers wouldn’t upgrade as quickly, and that would go against Apple’s financial intentions. In some cases, iPhone users have bragged that their smaller batteries at half the size of Android smartphone batteries outperform those of Android smartphone batteries with twice the size. I’ve yet to see an iPhone outperform top-tier Android phones, but that’s me.

In today’s editorial, I want to discuss the idea that “tech specs don’t matter.” There was a day in time when tech enthusiasts would comment at tech sites about the latest gadgets, but even average consumers have taken up the comment torch nowadays. You never know who the commenter is (whether tech enthusiast or not), and you never know what to expect. But one thing you can count on is seeing the phrase “tech specs don’t matter,” or, “it’s not all about tech specs.” Whenever tech enthusiasts dig into the Quad HD display, the octa-core processor, or the 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM (yes, this is at the heart of tech lingo), you’ll usually find a joke made about how tech enthusiasts “live for the numbers” and are “all about numbers and crazy high-definition displays,” etc.

But, do tech enthusiasts speak a random language for the sake of speaking it? Or, is it the case that tech specs do matter?

Well, if you’re talking in the field of tech, it’s a no-brainer.

Tech specs and their significance

To answer the question about whether or not tech specs (shorthand for “tech specifications”), we have to ask another question: how do you talk about tech without mentioning tech specs? If you’re talking about a TV, how do you not talk about the 4K display? How can you talk about a phone’s capabilities without mentioning the 32GB of storage, 16MP back camera, or the fact that it runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow or iOS 9? It’s no different than if you’re talking about a vehicle. How would you describe that car to someone if you didn’t talk about the v6 or v8 horsepower, the 100mph speeds, or the 40mpg (40-mile-per-gallon) gas tank?

Let’s take the medical field, and something with which we’re all familiar. If you go to the doctor and say, “I’m sick, I’m not feeling well,” what do you expect the doctor to do next? You expect him to ask the question, “what kind of symptoms are you experiencing,” or “are you feeling dizzy? Nauseous? Do you have a fever or chills? Are you experiencing lots of coughing and/or wheezing?,” with these questions being directly related to symptoms. The reason why the doctor needs to know your symptoms is because he or she is trained to identify symptoms in order to predict the illness.

Symptoms are the easiest unit to talk about between doctors and patients, and doctors will even take your blood pressure, temperature, and listen to your breathing so that, should problems arise, these “symptoms” can be factored into your overall diagnosis. It would be extremely hard for a doctor to talk with a patient if he or she didn’t ask you about your physical feelings: fatigue, sore throat, fever, and so on.

The same can be said for tech specifications, or tech specs. Tech specs tell you how a device has been made. In the world of tech, tech specs are key to describing gadgets. You can’t talk about the new Galaxy Note5, for example, without saying, “It has a 5.7-inch display.” Why not? Because you have to distinguish the Note5’s size from that of, say, the Galaxy S6 edge which has a 5.1-inch display. “Inches” as a unit with displays is a way to distinguish between two displays on two smartphones. Since these two smartphones don’t have the same-size displays, you can’t treat the displays as the same; you have to find some way to distinguish them.

The same goes for cameras, as you can’t talk about them without mentioning “megapixels,” or the processors without mentioning “cores” (dual-core, tri-core, quad-core, hexa-core, octa-core, deca-core, etc.), and so on. These are all basic units of language when it comes to tech, in the same way that you can’t speak English without mentioning “nouns, pronouns, and verbs.”

Tech specifications or tech specs refer to numbers as related to features about devices. Smartphones consist of displays, processors, cameras, build materials, and operating systems – and all of these separate components have their own language. When you talk about tech specs, you have to bring all these different components together to talk about the whole of the device (as opposed to just one part).

Without tech specs, tech talk is impossible. Thus, the statement “tech specs don’t matter” is actually self-refuting, since the statement itself doesn’t matter, if “tech specs don’t matter.” If tech specs don’t matter, it’s as if they don’t exist; and if tech specs don’t exist, then “tech specs” as a concept is as meaningless as “unicorn.” What does it mean to say “tech specs don’t matter” if “tech specs are nonexistent” because they are insignificant?

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