There’s a set of interview questions out there that, in my opinion, are really trick questions. You don’t really know what the interviewer is looking to have answered (not the “correct” answer, but what to discuss…).
This one is the latest “Why are manhole covers round?” question out there: “Android? Or iPhone?”
On the surface, how well do you know the features of the different types of phones. But, that’s not what the question is really about. Here’s two ways to answer this interview question:
The closest question behind the question is using mobility to continue to do your work. How can you use an iPhone or an Android to stay connected to the office? Use it with e-mail, use the smart phone to share information or use the tools for collaboration.
Each position out there has some unique ways mobile technology is used on the job. You should fashion your answer not on the specific phone, but how mobile technology helps you do work.
Which, of course, assumes you want to use a mobile phone for your work at all…
The larger question is answering how non-traditional office tools help you do your work. You can easily pivot from the phone to the portable technology. I don’t like smart phones to try to do stuff — not enough real estate. But an iPad? That works and directly answers how something can help you do the work.
But if you talk about whether you really like an iPhone or love your Android, you’ll lose because you need to relate the mobility to the work.
Let’s hope people who interview ask the question directly instead of having you figure out how many golf balls fit inside a school bus…