Former Windows boss Steven Sinofsky on all those “hahahahahaha he uses an iPhone” posts you may have seen over the last day or so:

Gotcha. Traitor. Snicker. Those were some of the reactions when people discovered that I was using an iPhone. I stand before you accused of using a competitor’s [sic] product and I plead guilty.

Moving beyond the gotcha blogs, there’s an actual reason for using technology products and services other than the ones you make (or happen to be made by the company where you work/ed). I think everyone knows that, even a thousand tweets later.  The approach in many industries to downplay or even become hostile to the competition are well-documented and studied, and generally conclude that experiencing the competition is a good thing.

Learning from the competition is not just required of all product development folks, but can also be somewhat of a skill worth honing. Let’s look at the ins and outs of using a competitive product.

Sinofsky has also said he uses just about every major phone out there. As he should.