Why Apple has many staunch supporters
Apple has many more strong supporters than other tech companies, which I once thought was quite surprising based on my experience with their products. After thinking about this for a while, here is what I came up with.
Before I receive accusations of fanboy-ism, I will state that I do not support any specific corporation, and I see no reason to except if one happened to own stock in one.
The first reason I see is that Apple has the strongest advertising in the field. Just now, I heard an Apple ad for the iPhone on the TV in the other room. The style of these ads is very notable: simple, elegant, and focusing on the real world use of the tech-illiterate. Other companies seem to have not understood the power of such advertising, which ties in with my next points.
Apple's advertising leads to Apple products being fashionable status symbols. Status symbols would not be normally available for prices comparable to other products of the same type, but Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch are, which leads to the crowd flocking to them.
Apple's advertising promotes the Apple brand. Competitors do not seem to be using the power of the brand. Apple maintains this brand by offering a great experience to those who do not know much about technology and would not use many advanced features.
All above points have been leading to this: that Apple controls 100% of what goes on iOS devices. When a user buys an iOS device, they are not buying the hardware but renting the software experience from Apple. First, Apple creates the hardware, and has even branded the CPU as their own. Apple creates the OS software, and does not add any capabilities that it believes the uninformed user will perceive as negative. Rather than blaming the user for placing too many widgets on too many screens, Apple will not make widgets available, stopping a portion of lag. In addition, Apple filters all third-party applications to make sure they conform to the experience Apple wants to provide. On top of that, Apple proved content for users to consume. In the end, it's pretty obvious: the consumer likes Apple. He does not have to choose whether he likes CompanyX, who made a nice app, or HTC, who made the phone, or Google, who made the OS. The consumer knows that the good experience is available through Apple.
The technologically inept consumer does not know the difference between hardware and the OS software and apps and content. He does not value the freedom to install whatever apps Apple may not be providing because he has no scope. He does not know that he should get a Nexus device if he wants to avoid carrier apps and bloatware. The inept consumer knows that the Apple logo means they like the device.
I was issued an iPad by my school, and told that I could install apps and do whatever I wished short of jailbreaking. But Apple blocks things that may be too confusing for the inept user. I cannot have a file browser, download, open, and create compressed archive files, mount the device's storage to my computer through the Wifi network by hosting an ftp server, and so may other everyday things I do with my Android device. And this is because Apple simply cannot make these things simple and intuitive for the average user, and Apple requires the experience to be that way. Just because I use Android does not make me a fanboy of google. I am only a fan of the ability to make my own choices.
In conclusion, Apple has strong supporters because of the ubiquitous post-purchase rationalization. "It is the best device because I have it." With Apple, customers know what they are enjoying because Apple's vertical control ensures that there is only one possibility - Apple.