Latest News: Technology |  Celebrity |  Movies |  Apple |  Cars |  Business |  Sports |  TV Shows |  Geek

Trending

Filed under: News | Android

 

Why I Dumped My Android Phone

Mar 27 2014, 2:07am CDT | by

2 Updates
Why I Dumped My Android Phone
 
 

YouTube Videos Tweets Comments

Full Story

Why I Dumped My Android Phone

After four years with an Android phone, I switched back to iPhone this month. I liked my Android phone, but the smartphone experience is very much a matter of details, and diving into today’s iPhone makes me realize how great a job Apple has done, and how strong its franchise truly is.

Details: I had three Android phones from January 2010 to March 2014, a NexusOne, a Galaxy Nexus, and a Galaxy S4, running Android 2.3 (Froyo) at first and 4.3 (Jelly Bean) at the end. The first two phones ran Google-experience Android, and the S4 had Samsung’s user interface overlay. My new iPhone is a 5c running iOS 7.1. I originally moved to Android because I was professionally curious about it, and I decided to switch back when I bought a new car and discovered that the interoperability of my near-new Galaxy S4 with the car was miserable (more). Research indicated an iPhone would be much better, and in fact it is.

The switch itself was surprisingly easy. My Verizon contract ties to a phone number (a “line” in telco-think), not a phone, so I bought a good used 5c on Amazon, had Verizon substitute it on the line at no cost, and sold my S4 on eBay: round trip cost about $150. My Exchange and Google accounts downloaded to the phone, and I had a back-up of my old iPhone that restored and updated most of my apps.

The key differences I notice between iPhone and Android:

• The iPhone user interface is much more polished. Google worked hard to make Jelly Bean quicker and smoother, making substantial improvements, but iPhone is still better. For example, when I type on the iPhone, it shows the letter I am trying to type more often, even though the screen is smaller. I’m guessing this is better software at work.

• The iPhone app ecosystem is markedly better. Google play and the Apple App Store both have about 1 million apps, and most major apps are available for both platforms, but, again, the devil lurks in the details. New apps and updates come out first on iPhone. iPhone apps are more feature-complete, e.g., the BMW Connect app that allows me to operate select smartphone apps from the car’s control screen supports Pandora and Stitcher on iOS and not on Android, and it just works better on iOS.

• iOS is stronger at the technical detail level: e.g., when you use an iPhone with a car, Bluetooth streaming audio works properly, you can control which contacts get synced to the car over Bluetooth, and if you have both Bluetooth and a wired connection to the car active, the iPhone smartly sends phone audio over Bluetooth and streaming-media audio over the wire, so both work. (In fact, Google-experience Android gets this right, too, but the Samsung user interface breaks it.) This might be fixed by an upgrade, but then you have the Android update fubar: six months post release, Verizon Galaxy S4 users are waiting for Kit Kat with no news from Verizon, and the update is buggy when you get it.

• The iPhone camera is just the best: beautiful pictures, and great features like high dynamic range, which both compensates for some limitations of simple cameras, and can create attractive images that remind me of a painting (more).

• I miss some Android strengths. The Google apps have more features on Android, e.g. Google Voice can make itself the default option for international calls. Android apps can access more of the system information. This enables, for example, a great signal strength application that shows the details for the voice, data, and wifi connections separately, which I have used to diagnose problems. And a few apps are better on Android: AirWx, a nicely functional weather app that displays the FAA weather information airline pilots use, has gotten me home on a few stormy nights by telling me which connection was likely to work. iPhone has a dumbed-down free version and an expensive pro version.

• Fundamentally, the iPhone is more of a phone, and the top tier Android phones, like the S4, are a phone/tablet fusion: “phablets”. The iPhone 5 is slimmer and fits the hand a bit better, but the extra screen size has important benefits. The Android calendar has a nice “week” view that iOS lacks on the iPhone but offers on the iPad. The Android key-pad has an extra line of suggested spellings below the text that I find useful. And the map and web-browsing experience is simply better with a bigger screen area. I spend 3-4x more time looking at my phone than holding it to my ear, so the screen experience matters much more than the “talking to toast” objection some have to phablets.

So, I’m looking forward to iPhone 6 with a ~5” screen. It will bring together the strengths of iOS with the one Android phone feature I miss most.

With that gap closed, I’m struck by what a superior product the iPhone actually is. Android has developed fast, shown Apple that (screen) size matters, made the market competitive, and expanded it, particularly in Asia and at the low end, which is great. Apple has built and nurtured the advantages with which it launched the smartphone era: user experience, hardware design and performance, and its app and media ecosystem. It’s developed into a top-10 global consumer brand, and most important, it has a large set of loyal and affluent customers who pay up for phones and software, keeping its ecosystem on top.

We are early in the smartphone era. As long as Apple can stay significantly better and take care of its customers, it has a long way to run.

================

Photo credit: the photos from which the morph was constructed were sourced from Wikipedia.org subject to the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Source: Forbes

 

You Might Also Like

Updates


Sponsored Update

Update: 2

Tweets

 

Advertisement


More From the Web

Shopping Deals

 
 
 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/31" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

 

Comments

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Gabrielle Union Marriage Ceremony has Confidentiality Clause
The marriage ceremony between Gabrielle Union and Dwayne Wade has a confidentiality clause that the two have forced just about everyone who is attending it to sign.
 
 
Anthony Brown Quits USC Trojans Football Team
Anthony Brown Quits USC Trojans Football Team
USC Trojans senior backup running back Anthony Brown quit the team on Aug. 28 and accused head football coach Steve Sarkisian of being a "racist man."
 
 
Apple iPad Air 2 Rear Shell Images Leaked Again
Apple iPad Air 2 Rear Shell Images Leaked Again
Apple's iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 tablets are expected to launch this year. Production of Apple's largest-ever iPad having 12.9-inches display will also begin reportedly in Q1 2015.
 
 
NFL's Personal Conduct Policy Stiffened
NFL's Personal Conduct Policy Stiffened
The NFL stiffened its personal conduct policy -- which covers assault, battery and domestic violence -- on Aug. 28. The first offense is subject to a six-game suspension without pay. A second offense will result in a lifetime ban from the NFL.
 
 
 

About the Geek Mind

The “geek mind” is concerned with more than just the latest iPhone rumors, or which company will win the gaming console wars. I4U is concerned with more than just the latest photo shoot or other celebrity gossip.

The “geek mind” is concerned with life, in all its different forms and facets. The geek mind wants to know about societal and financial issues, both abroad and at home. If a Fortune 500 decides to raise their minimum wage, or any high priority news, the geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants to know the top teams in the National Football League, or who’s likely to win the NBA Finals this coming year. The geek mind wants to know who the hottest new models are, or whether the newest blockbuster movie is worth seeing. The geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants—needs—knowledge.

Read more about The Geek Mind.