A couple of weeks ago in Paralyzed by Choice – Too Many Tech Options I explained that with so many choices – mobile phones and carrier plans in particular – decisions are hard. Well, sometimes circumstances simplify the choice. 

On Saturday, my BlackBerry died, which forced a decision. When I downloaded an updated Google app and did the necessary re-start, I encountered a JVM (Java Virtual Machine) Error. In my second call to Sprint advanced tech support, I was told I would have to go to a Sprint repair center and allow 2 hours.

Well, I dread the prospect of going to any wireless carrier store. But I did not want to be without a mobile phone. So I hopped in my car and drove to the Apple store 10 minutes away and bought an iPhone. Elapsed time – even with provisioning and help setting up MobileMe – was under 2 hours.

In the end, with all my angst about iPhone versus Droid and different data plans and the mobile hot spots versus tethering mobiles for broadband, convenience and certainty won the day. I had been leaning toward a Droid phone. But then I would have had to (1) figure out which one and (2) go to the store of a wireless carrier.

I realized that going with Apple meant a simple decision… the iPhone 4. From a decision-making process, going down a branch with just one choice had a lot of appeal. The Droid branch would have meant lots more decision-making. Perhaps there is a more generalizable lesson here: that limiting the number of choices is a good thing.