I want a folding bike. Here are my reasons:
1) I want to tour, but not just to and from my apartment. The expense and inconvenience of traveling by train, bus and plane with a full size bike is discouraging. A folder is the obvious solution.
2) I ride a full-sized fixed gear. I'd like to have a free-wheel, multi-speed - something at least close to a road bike - as well that won't take up too much space in my small apartment. Ideally something that I can take on the train for rides further afield. I'd be just as happy with a 3-speed hub as with a 9-speed derailleur as long as the bike can handle longer rides at a decent speed (maybe 17 mph).
I've looked at all of the big names. Bike Fridays are, of course, very nice, but they're quite expensive and don't seem to fold very easily. The Swift Folder felt like a big bike and is pretty versatile, but the fold, although fast, isn't very small and I generally prefer steel over aluminum frames. I recently test rode a Brompton and was shocked by the ride quality. However, I'm not sure how well it's suited for long rides/tours. Dahons seem harder to travel with and nerdy (I am an image-conscious cyclist). As you can see, I'm pretty indecisive.
Any advice? Obviously every folder has advantages and disadvantages, so I appreciate any input on these bikes or suggestions for others to consider.