Androids vs. iPhones. The discussion continues. When the iPhone was first released, there was really no competition. The iPhone was playing in a class of its own. First Android phones were dismal: sluggish UI response, lags here and there, and the overall “assemble-it-yourself” idea just didn’t with consumers.
Hardware and Model Selection
With Apple iPhone, you are always limited to just a few models. Or, rather, you can choose from just one current model in several versions that differ very little. There are a few older models you can get from the used market, but that’s about it. “You can have any color as long as it’s black”.
Android devices, on the other hand, come in many shapes, models and colors. Different manufacturers use entirely different hardware. Different displays, processors, memory. Very different quality and usability. Buying an Android phone will require you to do a research on what’s available, whereas you can’t go really wrong with any iPhone you can afford. Are you a techno geek or a gadget guy? Look for an Android phone that flies with you. Others will be served by Apple.
The latest generation of iPhones has a superb Retina display. These super high pixel density displays will render your apps, icons and graphics so smooth it’s hard to believe. Kudos to Apple: they made one of the best screens ever.
Androids come with all kinds of screens. Some of the better ones can reach iPhones in pixel density, but software integration is still lagging. Many apps still have low-resolution icons and images designed to be shown on lower-resolution displays. When choosing an Android phone, you will have to watch really carefully to buy a model with a good screen. If you’re not good with numbers, icon resolutions, angles of view and technical specs, just leave the Androids alone.
Pre-Installed Software and UI
An iPhone is an iPhone. They’re all the same. A single operating system, one UI, the same set of pre-installed apps, exactly the same icons. You can customize it by moving things around and picking a few icons on your own, but there’s only so much you’re allowed to do.
Androids are available in many flavors. Different firmware and dozens of OS versions, builds and editions. Different sets of icons for same apps. Many different shells and launchers. Fully customizable: you can turn an Android phone into pretty much whatever you want (and it’s not all about custom icons) – but you must know what you’re doing. With such a broad variety, some models are simply better as in easier to use, more stable and working faster than others. If building your very own tailored system is fun for you, by all means buy the Android. If you like your phone working out of the box, get an iPhone and start using it right away.
iPhones don’t don’t accept memory cards. You’ll be stuck with the amount of memory you originally got. If you outgrow your iPhone, you’ll have to get another iPhone, bringing more money to Apple.
Most but not all Android phones come with a microSD slot, allowing you to add more memory when you need it. With microSD cards getting cheaper every year, you will be better off in the long run if you get an Android.
With iPhones, you can’t even replace a battery. If your battery dies in some years (they all do; lithium batteries die in 3-4 years), you’ll be mailing your iPhone to Apple for a “major repair” (more money to Apple), or be shopping for a new iPhone (even more money to Apple).
While some Android phones use similarly user irreplaceable batteries, most devices are easy: just lift the cover and throw a new battery in. A new battery will set you back a few dollars, allowing you to postpone the purchase of another phone some more years.
Android phones are cheaper to buy and cheaper to upgrade and maintain. They’re more extensible and customizable. iPhones are perfect right out of the box, and offer one of the best usage experience ever. Which one to pick? The choice is yours.