I don't have experience riding them, but it certainly looks and sounds like an excellent bike. If your friend has the experience and the means, you can advise him to go for it. However, the bike hasn't bee long enough on the market to detail all the reliability issues of Triumph, we'll have to wait and see.
It is certainly a better street bike than the 600s, with more torque down low, and perhaps uncommon. All the mags love it, but like you said, most average riders wouldn't notice the handling difference between it and any other sportbike.
So if he likes the look, sound, and ergonomics, he could go for it.