Why Exactly is Android Better than iOS?
Since I began my obsession with Android, one of the most common questions I get asked is, ‘Why should I make the move?’ As we live in Australia, the majority of people here are ‘obsessed’ with their iProducts – iPhone, iPad, etc. Little do they know how much more myProduct can achieve – myProduct being my various Androids of course – I can have extreme brand loyalty too!
I recently helped a friend choose between an iPhone and an Android. After speaking to me they decided on an HTC Sensation XE based on it’s Android customizability, while having HTC’s Sense overlay for a ‘simpler’ user interface (and of course the free set of Beats By Dre headphones that accompany it) – good decision may I add!
Now this friend is a first-time smartphone user so I went over as soon as the XE arrived to give a talk-through about the phone and what it is capable of. While going through it I realised that I was constantly referring to reasons why it is better than the iPhone (the constant questioning from peers and colleagues has gotten through to me it seems!) . So, why exactly are Androids better than the iPhone?
Here are my top 10 reasons to purchase an Android over an iPhone:
1. You have the ability to customize your phone pretty much any way you like.
One of the greatest features of Android devices (mobile and other) is the great ability for customization. The nature of Android is that it allows you to change almost every facet of your phone’s home screens. The background can be changed to the point where it can be a live wallpaper, which can be downloaded from the Android market. On top of the background is where it gets even more interesting! Unlike the iPhone, where all apps are found on the home screens, Android stores its apps in the ‘app tray.’ The ‘app tray’ itself can be found on the home screens. The user then has the choice to place whichever apps they would like on each of the pages, giving an overall cleaner and well-managed feel to the home screens. You get to choose what goes where and how many apps are found on your home screens – it all comes down to you, the user. But Android doesn’t just stop there, which brings us to our next point – widgets!
Widgets allow the user to have a portion of an app open on their home screen. This saves you the hassle of constantly opening apps and closing them (as you would on an iPhone) when you only want to access one feature.
3. Larger ScreenIn general, Android devices (especially high-end ones) have larger screens than the iPhones’ 3.5” standard. This makes it much easier to read articles, browse the web and read your email. It also makes for a nicer form to play games and watch video.
4. More dedicated buttons
Pre-Android 4.0 ICS Android phones have a dedicated selection of 4 buttons – Home, back, menu and search – which dramatically improve the user experience. All of these are specific to Android besides for the home button. The back button makes it easier to navigate through apps and menus without having to return to the home screen. The menu and search buttons are you saviour! The menu button is incredibly helpful for any situati
on where you don’t know what to click or are in need of a few more options. Whenever in need of help, click the menu button and what you are looking for will surely pop up right in front of you. The search button acts as an in-app, entire device and Google search button all at one. As search is what made Google what they are today they have done a great job with making it possible for you to navigate around your phone.
For Ice Cream Sandwich phones you will have the dedicated home, back and multi-tasking buttons. The home and back buttons speak for themselves. The multi-tasking button is an incredibly functional button, which bring up a beautiful list of all the apps running. It makes it very simple to enter or close apps from right where you are.
5. A phone for everyone
With prices ranging from $79 to $1000 Android manufacturers have found price ranges (and phones) which work for anyone and everyone. If you’re on a budget, there’s a phone for you! If you’ve got money to blow, there’s a different phone for you!
6. Separation of software and hardware development allows for more (and faster) progression in each area
While Google develops the operating system, OEMs around the
world can focus their time on improving their hardware. This has allowed for the incredibly thin and light phones, Gorilla Glass, Kevlar backs, as well as things like processor speed and amount of RAM. These developments help the phones in terms of speed, multi-tasking capabilities, camera functions, aesthetics and durability.
7. 4G capabilities
Apple’s iPhone line does not currently sport any 4G capabilities. Over in the US Android has been a pioneer for 4G for quite a while, while it is just making its way down under now. 4G speeds are great for the usability of the Internet features of a phone, especially as a portable hot spot.
8. Open Source
The fact that Android is an open source means that anyone can have a look at the coding and tinker away at it. OEMs are able to add their own ‘skins’ or overlay to the operating system to personalise the phone. This further adds to the fact that there is a phone for everyone. For example, HTC phones often tend to be focused on looks, graphics and cameras, while Samsung phones tend to be focused on what’s under the hood (processor speed, RAM, weight).
9. Google services
Google has baked in a whole host of their own services into Android phones. This includes Maps, Google+, Gmail, YouTube, Skymaps and the aforementioned Google search. Google also has the Market which runs via a single Google account. You are able to access the market via your device or internet browser, giving you the ability to easily surf and download apps from anywhere.
10. Flash support
Although Adobe have announced that they will not be continuing mobile flash support, it still exists and works on all Android devices up to and including Ice Cream Sandwich ones. This is a great benefit for browsing the web to its full extent, making it possible to see most (if not all) web pages via a mobile device.
Now remember, this is just a list of why Android is better than iOS – not just why Android is good. While there are a whole slew of reasons to buy an Android, these 10 reasons are features which are not found on iPhones or iPads.
So, who’s going to buy an Android now? If you’re looking for a phone, take a look at our full list of Android phones available in Australia.