These Are the Ultimate Smartphone Fanboys — and They're About to Do Battle

Update! If you’re going to be in Austin on Monday, March 16, and want to see the Fanboy Smartphone Challenge live, you can get tickets to the event. They’re free!

Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to present the two ultimate smartphone superfans.

But before I do, let me tell you why.

In less than two weeks, at a certain annual gathering of nerds and hipsters in Austin, Texas, Yahoo Tech is putting on a big production called the Fanboy Smartphone Challenge. We’re going to have two superfans go mano a mano in a battle that David Pogue calls “half game show, half science experiment, half serious.”

Our two young contestants will be battling for the ultimate prize: to be king of the smartphone fanboys. Our aim is nothing less than determining, once and for all, which smartphone platform is better, Apple or Android. A series of tasks and challenges will be handed out to our two brave contestants. They won’t be easy. But with such an important title on the line, they shouldn’t be.

The big show is Monday, March 16. We’ll have video of the whole thing here on Yahoo Tech. And now, meet the brawlers for the Fanboy Smartphone Challenge:

For Android: Derek Ross


Derek Ross, 35, has been Android faithful since early 2010, when he got his HTC Droid Incredible. Since then, Derek has become completely obsessed with the Android, putting the platform on his TV, his wrist, even his face (Google Glass). He has owned more tablets and smartphones than he will admit to in polite company.

Derek spends his free time as a contributing author for Android’s oldest news website,, and has hosted a weekly Android hangout show for over a year.

When Derek’s not playing with his Nexus 6 or Nexus 7, he’s often found spreading the teachings of Matias Duarte, like a true Android fanboy.

For Apple: John Foley


John M. Foley, 27 years old, hails from Chicago. He’s a graduate of the University of Illinois, the same school where the HAL 9000, clearly Siri’s inspiration, was created. In his day job, John does data analytics and consulting.

You’ve probably seen John before: He’s that crazy guy on the news waiting overnight for each new iPhone. In his spare time, he nervously cheers on the Cubs, listens to podcasts nonstop, and uses Apple’s GarageBand and iMovie apps to feel like the rock star he wishes he were.

This is John’s submission to be the Apple rep in our Fanboy Challenge:

John comes to the challenge fully equipped with an iPhone 6 Plus, an iPad Air 2, a MacBook Pro, an iMac, and an AppleTV, and he is eagerly awaiting the Apple Watch.