Yes, the “Feel” of Your Technology Matters

November 13, 2017
Brandon S. Harter

Many technology enthusiasts subscribe to the theory that to appear on the cutting edge they need to always upgrade to the latest version. The latest software patch, the latest device, etc. I, on the other hand, have always felt like an upgrade needed to give me something (although when I do make a move I tend to spend more than your average bear doing so).

An example you say? Well my Huawei Watch comes to mind. At the outset, it is worth noting that I waited until this year before adding any technology to my wrist. I held out against the FitBit, exercise watches, and even the Pebble and prior android iterations until I felt like the operating system gave me something that I wanted. With the release of Android Wear 2.0 I was there. (Or an Apple Watch if that is more your style).

When I dove in, I went with the Huawei Watch when its replacement, the Huawei Watch 2 was readily available on the market. But wait, why the old model? One of the critical features for me was looking like a watch, not just a micro-wrist-size-smartphone-thing. I often find myself in courtrooms where my appearance, to the court, staff, and perhaps even a jury, can make a big difference. Having a watch that looks like a watch when I disable all the bells and whistles helps that persona, while still being fancy enough for my use when I am with tech-enthusiastic company.

Okay, okay, but that’s just one specialized piece not everyone uses. What about something more ubiquitous like a smartphone? Well that’s another good example. Last year my wife and I cut the cord on my traditional cell phone plan in favor of Google Fi. To do so we needed new phones and I went with the top of the line Pixel which I have adored since day one. But I’m not ready to jump to the Pixel 2. Why? As noted by John Gruber over at, the almost universal first reaction that it “feels like it’s made out of plastic.” And that matters! I like the brushed metallic feel of my Pixel. Even if the hardware is not as powerful, I’m doing fine with what I have and the aesthetics make a difference.

While I think it is incredibly important to keep your technology up to date to provide the best possible service, no matter what business you are in, let’s not forget that the look and the feel matter as well.

Brandon Harter is an attorney and technology guru at Russell, Krafft & Gruber, LLP, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He received his law degree from William & Mary Law School and advises clients on issues of Business LawCivil Litigation & Dispute ResolutionMunicipal Law, and Information Technology & Internet Law.