When I thought about writing this article, the important thing to me was to present this in a clear view where there is no comparison about which is ‘the best’ OS.
Much more than ever, I was able to tell that there really isn’t a better option as such. It all comes down to the user’s needs and personal preferences, which vary a lot from user to user. So this is not a fanboy point of view; I’ll just try to address the things that matter most to me, and why either iOS or Android fits my personal needs.
10 years on iOS
I have mainly been an iOS user over the past 10 years — although I’ve owned a few Android phones here and there, as well as Windows phones.
For so many years I felt Android was way behind iOS in many areas, The smoothness and dependability of iOS just made it a better all around OS in my opinion. Of course, Android always offered the great benefit of customization, which is awesome if you like setting things up your way. Still, the fact that iOS has always been more secure than Android kept me coming back to Apple’s world.
This time around, though, I felt like Apple is taking their ‘experience’ to a much more expensive and premium level for what it’s worth. No doubt, we’re buying the ecosystem rather than a single phone or computer, but I still felt it was getting out of my budget — so I thought about it a lot and jumped ship.
My last iPhone was an iPhone 7 Plus and now I’ve been using a Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus as my daily driver. I’ll point out what is important to me, in a direct approach, and how each phone delivers those.
iOS to Android: Displays
To me, the screen does matter! It’s that one thing you keep looking at all day long. And the Samsung Galaxy S8’s display is just best in class, hands down. I absolutely love the infinity display with its vivid colors and huge edge to edge screen.
The bezel-less screen on the Galaxy bothers some people but that seems to be the trend this year, and I personally love it. Watching YouTube videos on it is awesome, and even though many videos are not optimized yet to fit this amazing screen yet, they still look great.
iOS to Android: Design
I love looking at my phone and feeling good about it. And to that, I think the Galaxy S8/Note are the best-looking phones of 2017. The iPhone has had the same design for 4 years now, and I had the 6, 6S and 7, so I’ve been basically looking at the very same phone for years on end. The iPhone X is getting to people’s hands by now, but that will cost you a significant amount of money.
iOS to Android: Losing iMessage
Losing iMessage is a deal breaker for many. Luckily for me, I live in a country where WhatsApp is the dominant app here, so that was no major issue to me.
iOS to Android: Battery Life
Battery life is a very important factor for me; I hate needing my phone when I see my battery dying. That is one area where iPhone has suffered historically — although it has improved significantly over the years with the iPhone Plus models. I think Apple could use bigger batteries (who doesn’t think that!?), but due to design preferences, Apple has opted out of it. Still, battery life ends up being reasonable thanks to the iPhone’s Retina Displays and iOS efficiency.
The Galaxy S8 Plus has a larger and more vibrant screen to push all that juice. It runs Android, which tends to be less energy efficient than iOS, yet believe it or not, I’ve had better battery life here than on the iPhone 7 Plus. So thumbs up to Samsung!
iOS to Android: Battery Charging
Though my iPhone 7 Plus had decent battery life, it took ages to charge it. And I never went from 0 to 100, always plugging in at 20% or so. Samsung has provided a fast-charging outlet out-of-the-box for a few years now, and this thing charges fast! To a battery freak, like myself, that does matter.
On top of that, wireless charging is something I’ve always wanted. Apple has it now (finally!), but charging on the official and non-official wireless chargers take forever. 15% in 30 minutes just wouldn’t do for me considering how fast the Android variants are.
iOS to Android: Ecosystems
Here’s one thing I need to give it to Apple: iOS simply works really well.
I never had any problem with iOS – apart from the Notes app that just wouldn’t sync between my Mac and iPhone for some reason. But generally speaking iCloud works amazingly well. I was able to attach any file from the Mail app anytime, anywhere. My home was all set up in Apple’s ecosystem with Apple TV, MacBook Pro and iPhone meaning every device worked seamlessly together.
So far I have been struggling with a few things in that department on Android, but I’m hoping I can adjust those things in the future.
iOS to Android: Photography
I love Google Photos — it’s visually more appealing than Apple’s photos — but I couldn’t make it my primary photos app yet. Syncing with all other apps I’ve got has been a challenge. My ‘Gallery’ app and Google Drive on the Galaxy S8 have been the only apps Android will allow me to use (not Google Photos or Dropbox).
Extras that made a difference to me
- Always on display (great for time, calendar, battery life at a glance – saves a whole lot of battery life), rather than having to turn the full screen on every single time
- Fast and wireless charging
- Several keyboards, such as GBoard and SwiftKey just work and learn better on Android
- Bluetooth 5.0
- Endless customizations
- Notification Center used to be great on iOS 10. Love those widgets, so efficient and quick to look at
- Definitely emojis
- Safer environment
So there you have it guys. Again, this is not about what OS is better; each one of them has their own features and each serves a particular type of user. I pointed out what really matters to my daily use and what I like or dislike on each OS.
What OS out of iOS and Android do you feel fits your needs and lifestyle and what’s the main reason you use it?
Let’s talk tech in the comments!