iOS vs. Android

ios-vs-android

The conflict

So the inevitable finally happened. For years and years, ever since I moved away from Symbian and Blackberry, I had to, temporarily, switch out my Android device for an iconic iPhone. Imagine the suspense!

I had dropped my beloved Nexus 6P, which took the place of my favorite phone ever, after the (even still) amazing Nexus 5. So rather than buying a new phone, I accepted the +1 month repair time of my Nexus 6p and got a new loaner phone, which turned out to be the iPhone 5s.

I figured this would be a golden opportunity to test drive the iPhone experience and see what all the fuzz is about. I vowed to remain unbias and objective in my discoveries, to produce more accurate results, which I find to be an easier task than most. So let’s start with the obvious; I realize that the Nexus 6p is one and half year newer than the iPhone 5s, so technology makes the Nexus 6p more favorable right off the bat. I also realize that a month is not enough to learn all the things there is to learn about iPhones and to learn all the little know-hows, although I went all in (iTunes, iCloud – the whole shebang!).

I used my iPhone in all kinds of scenarios; working, partying, working out, kicking back, playing games etc., to ensure that I got enough data to form a valid opinion.

Android thoughts (Nexus 6P)

Pros:

  • Better keyboard experience (Swype default).
  • Intuitive UI.
  • Better customization options.
  • Easier accessibility.
  • Better camera.
  • Better display.
  • Longer battery life (which is impressive as the screen is twice as big).
  • Quicker across the board.
  • Much more reliable phone experience.

Cons:

  • A bit on the large side.
  • Not as elegant as the 5s.

iPhone thoughts (iPhone 5s)

Pros:

  • Excellent fingerprint reader / software – Except when fingers are moist or wet! Then it doesn’t work at all.
  • Nice similarity “feel” across apps.
  • Cool zoom function to accurately move the cursor.
  • Although you get use to the rather large Nexus 6P, the size of the S5 is a plus.
  • Nice design – Solid and well crafted.

Cons:

  • Not that intuitive.
  • Poor native app design.
  • Poor screen point-accuracy / recognition.
  • No notification lights.
  • Unimpressive performance.
  • Standard security measures illogical.
  • Dial contact option is illogical.
  • Good theft options aside from standard security measures.
  • Critical security flaw. I experienced a passcode mismatch (no I did not forget) and had to erase and restore. Lost all data.
  • Notifications much less efficient / doesn’t give a good overview.
  • Difficult to hang up calls on the phone, when earbuds are plugged in.
  • No reminder that Hotspot service is running.
  • Poor screen resolution / quality.
  • No option for hiding Apps you don’t actively use. Folders is a poor workaround.
  • General buggy user experience (wait time, unresponsiveness).
  • Links from web pages and emails to resources you have an app for don’t open the app.
  • The factory alarm clock is awful. Like being woken by an active motorized sledgehammer, trying to turn it off with broken fingers.
  • No option to disregard notifications without opening them.
  • Poor widget support.

The verdict

It’s been about a month now, since I got the Nexus back from shop, so I now have the following user experiences:

  • Switching from Android to iPhone, which gave me insight into what I missed from Android.
  • Getting used to iPhone, which gave my insight into what Apples iOS does better than Android.
  • Switching from iPhone to Android, which highlighted the stuff I missed about the iPhone and what I had longed for from Android.
  • Getting back in gear with Android, which allowed me to step back and look at both products equally.

Although the Nexus is a bit on the large side and doesn’t have that cold and solid aluminum “feel”, the phone outmatch the iPhone with ease. I simply work and navigate a lot quicker on the Android than I do on the iPhone, and I dare say that it’s not a matter of inexperience. The iPhone is a “smart” phone, in the sense that it’s cool looking, it can do all that you want to do and it has the Apple flair about it. But the Android simply aim to please with its User Experience and seems to care more about what you need to and how you want to do it. It’s really a matter of wanting an all pleasing Retriever or a stylish and very opinionated King Poodle – They are both intelligent, but bred for very different purposes.

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