Over at Practical Opacity, J. Eddie Smith writes,

If iOS proves anything it’s that software doesn’t necessarily require instruction.

I could not agree more with him about the ease of iOS devices. I work in a large media company and everyday more of our journalists and writers are moving from Blackberries to iPhones and Android devices. This is in addition to the piles of iPads being purchased and used by everyone from the top down.

There is one major difference between those who buy iPhones/iPads and those who opt for Android devices. After adding company email to the device, I never see the iOS users again.

For the Android users, I am consistently stopped in the hallway or emailed about some minor problem or question. It does not matter if the user is young or old, male or female, savvy or not. The questions always begin with, “How do I…?”

The iOS users do not need helping learning how to use the device. Even adding an exchange-hosted email address to the device is a simple PDF I wrote that is emailed to them.

The Android users inevitably need help adding their company email to the phone. They always have questions about how to do something or how to use the device.

This is frustrating because each Android device is just different enough to be utterly confusing to use. Whether it be the MotoBlur or the HTC Sense or some other abomination, it is a confusing mess.

When I had an Android phone, I used the original Motorola Droid. I chose this phone primarily because it was a “Google Experience” phone which meant it was a standard Android OS without any third-party OS tacked atop it.

If every Android phone looked the same or at least similar, they would be far easier to support and explain to their respective owners.

I would address Android tablets but I’ve yet to come across one. The IT department even ordered a Blackberry Playbook for evaluation. The company recently purchased about a dozen Google TVs for conferences rooms and other offices. However, I’ve yet to see a single Android tablet come through the front door.

This is pretty damning for Android. As a company that lives and breathes on the web and has iOS apps for its flagship publications, Android doesn’t even warrant a single mention or presence.