Julie’s gadget diary – 5 reasons why I think Apple devices are better than Android devices

{ 16 comments }

ios-android

When it comes to mobile devices, fans can be very vocal when talking about their favorite. If you dare put down their chosen platform, some people will take it as a personal insult worthy of verbal fisticuffs. I’ve often wondered why we can be so sensitive about our choices when it comes to smartphones and tablets. To add more fuel to the fire I thought I’d offer up my own list of 5 reasons why I think Apple devices are better than Android devices. Since I currently prefer Android to Apple, this list may come as a surprise. 

1. Apple hardware has a premium design. When people are trying to decide which platform they want to go with, hardware plays a huge part in that decision. The Android operating system could be the best OS in the universe, but if the devices it runs on are junk, no one will want to buy them. Apple on the other hand makes products that everyone wants… even people who hate Apple will probably admit that they wish Apple devices would work with the Android operating. I’m not saying all Android devices are sub-par when it comes to their physical design, but the majority of them are not nearly as tech sexy as the latest and greatest Apple devices with their thin metal cases, curved edges, premium camera, fingerprint scanner and Retina display. Android devices continue to improve, but do people camp out in front of stores in order to be one of the first people to get their hands on the newest Android phone? I didn’t think so…

2. Apple devices get all the cool accessories and software first. I’m probably not the only Android user who gets annoyed when I find a really cool add-on or app only to find out that it is only compatible with the iPhone or iPad. There are so many nifty little gadgets and gizmos made specifically for Apple devices that it’s not fair <pout>. Products like the Galileo panning robotiOgrapher iPad Video Rig, iSense 3D scanner and more. Yes, it’s true that there are other accessories that are compatible with some Android devices, but they are usually only compatible with one or two devices and are not compatible with the wide variety of Android devices that are are the market. Which brings me to reason number 3. I won’t even go into the insane number of cases that are always available for Apple devices compared to the relatively tiny number of offerings for all the Android devices.

3. There are too many Android devices, which is known as platform fragmentation. The best thing about Android is the fact that it is an open platform. It’s also the worst thing about it. The problem is that there are too many variants when it comes to hardware features and specs. Some devices have physical buttons, some don’t. Some devices have 99 mega pixel cameras while some only have 8 (yes I’m exaggerating). Some have fingerprint scanners, some don’t. Some have microSD card slots, some don’t. Some have built in Qi wireless charging, some don’t. Some have a replaceable battery and some don’t. With Apple the choices are much smaller. There’s the iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C. Or as I like to call them, papa bear, mama bear, baby bear and the wacky gay uncle. With Apple you know you’ll get a button on the front, volume buttons on the side, a mute button and a power button.

4. Apple knows how to be consistent. If we look at the user interface for Android devices, things can become confusing because vendors like to put their own skin / theme on top of the operating system. You’ve probably heard of Touchwiz and Sense. Those are the code names for Samsung and HTC’s user interface skin. Adding themes and skins isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it causes user confusion and it creates a platform that has no consistency unlike the almost rigid consistency that we find with Apple devices. Android users (myself included) will argue that Apple’s walled garden is boring and restrictive and doesn’t leave much room for user flare. This is true, but there’s a lot to be said for being able to pick up a device and knowing exactly how to use it without having to search around for apps and settings.

5. No waiting for carriers and vendors for OS updates. Apple devices get new iOS version updates immediately instead of being required to wait for various carriers and vendors to approve the updates first. For example, my current phone is the Verizon branded LG G3. Android 5.0 (aka Lollipop) is only just today (April 13, 2015) starting to roll out for this phone when the update has been available since November of last year. Even Google’s own Nexus devices don’t always get the updates when they are released. My Nexus 7 LTE 2013 tablet didn’t get the update when other Nexus 7 devices got theirs. It’s really frustrating to know that there’s an updated version of the operating system for your device but you can’t install it until someone else tells you you can. Apple on the other hand allows everyone to install their updates on their devices on the day that they make it available.

Writing this list almost makes me consider switching back to an iPhone… almost. What are your thoughts on why Apple is better than Android? Please share them in the comment section below.

Update: Check out 5 reasons why I think Android devices are better than Apple devices

Posted in: Android, Articles, iOS
{ 16 comments… add one }
  • Rick Smith April 14, 2015, 11:34 am

    I have to agree with almost everything contained herein, but with the caveat that I have not ever owned an Android device. I was a longtime BlackBerry user and migrated to iOS first with a Macbook Pro, then an iPad and finally iPhones. Consistency and the ability for everything to work well together trumps all, in my mind, and with the Apple platforms users have that, for the most part.

  • six42 April 14, 2015, 11:51 am

    I did switch back to iOS and iPhone 6Plus after years of Nexus devices.
    24 hours later I returned it and got the nexus 6.

    1. Apple’s ‘consistent’ software is artificially crippled. Their iPad sd card and USB reader won’t work with iPhone (despite the i6 being more powerful than most iPads). Why? Device marketing segmentation (compared to fragmentation)

    2. Their software is crippled (again). I can’t even organize home screen icons as I wish – they must be placed from top left and fill right and then down. On a 6(or 5.5) inch phone, that matters. Reachability is not an answer, it’s like putting a caution sign instead of filling the pothole.

    3. File management. On my nexus if I want to do something with a file I can do it. On iOS? Only if Apple permits it.

    Things I wish my nexus 6 had? The fingerprint sensor is awesome. And the camera ‘shutter lag’ is far less on the iPhone.

    iOS’ benefits of consistency and rapid updates are only positives if you like them. Otherwise their software has barely evolved since I bought the original iPhone and 3G on their launch days.

    BTW ‘Retina Display’ is marketing alone. IPhone resolutions have now almost caught up to some android phones.

  • Eric April 14, 2015, 11:57 am

    The only reason I won’t have another Android device is the lack of privacy and control. Every app I downloaded required access to my phone, contacts, emails, documents, GPS, wireless etc. with no control other than “delete the app”.

    Apple might be infuriatingly arrogant in their approach (if your device/app doesn’t do what you want, or if we change it to make it worse, then it’s your fault for not wanting the right stuff); their native business apps (mail, calendar, todo) are awful and their products incompatible with everything else – but at least they give me the option of deciding which apps can browse my personal data.

  • Bill Henderson April 14, 2015, 12:07 pm

    I agree with Rick. The MAIN reason I choose Apple is because of the eco-system or BORG, as I like to call it. Since I have been exclusively Mac since 1989, it was a no-brainer to go with iOS all the way. Everything works together seamlessly—not always in the way I want it to—but it does spoil you.

  • Mark Ryan April 14, 2015, 12:23 pm

    Either choice requires a decision to fully embrace 1 eco-system or the other. I am an Android user as I have no Macs anywhere and do like iTunes. I am not happy to have lots of data going to Google and other app providers but there are lots of other features which Apple has yet to embrace. If I had Macs everywhere, I would carry and iPhone 6+. Apple stuff works with Apple stuff and not much else. Beyond that, the comparison between the 2 worlds is great bar chatter but I doubt is changes any opinions.

  • Helen Hegedus April 14, 2015, 12:51 pm

    I’m confused about your “Writing this list almost makes me consider switching back to an iPhone… almost” as you didn’t explain why “almost.” So, why almost?

    I agree with a couple of the existing comments: the comparison probably won’t change any opinions, and sticking to what you know and are familiar with in the Apple orchard makes a lot of sense.

    • Julie Strietelmeier April 14, 2015, 1:13 pm

      @Helen “almost” because I still prefer Android a variety of reasons which you’ll have to wait and read about when I post the opposite of this article: 5 reasons why I think Android devices are better than Apple devices

  • Jeff Gee April 14, 2015, 1:08 pm

    Google’s business model seems to be: we’ll give you free stuff, and in return we’ll take whatever personal info we can snatch, and monitize it any way we can.

    This works fine for folks who don’t care much about personal security and privacy, or slippery slopes. For me, I prefer Apple’s “we’re a hardware company and have no interest in your personal data” model.

  • EWY April 15, 2015, 12:57 am

    I have a HTC One M8 GPE. Other than item 2. Apple devices get all the cool accessories and software first. None of the other points apply. My M8 GPE gets updates whenever there is a new one. It is built as good if not better than an iPhone. I love those front facing speakers.

  • TonyW April 15, 2015, 9:01 am

    I’ll second the HTC One M8. After the front facing very loud speakers, I really like the IR blaster.

    But I would disagree with #3. Apple artificially segments their market through upgrade lockouts and obsolete peripherals.

    Also #5 no waiting unless they orphan your particular iDevice. At least with android the wizards over on the XDA forums will come out with an upgraded rom for your android device.

  • Fabian April 15, 2015, 9:07 am

    Hi Julie, I agree with you about the benefits of IOs, currently use a Galaxy S5 by Movistar has not received the update Lollipop and I do not know when it will be available here in Buenos Aires.
    The only reason I dont migrated to Iphone is that Android can connect via USB external devices (flash drives) because here we dont have good connectivity, recently began the arrival of 4G and most of the devices (Galaxy S5 included) do not support it.
    Regards,
    Fabián

  • AlMaine April 15, 2015, 9:17 am

    Just a quick flip of your arguments
    1. Design is nice if you want to exhibit your phone. Mine stays in my pocket. As far as “but do people camp out in front of stores in order to be one of the first people to get their hands on the newest Android phone?” I think that is called the Lemming Approach. Do I want something because people lie up???
    2. Meh! How many apps can one person use? Remember,, we’re talking about a phone here. Re: cases – real question is “Can you find an Android case that you like and that fits? Anything beyond that is eyewash.
    3. “Platform fragmentation” simply means that you get to choose what YOU want, not what Apple wants you to want.
    4. Just how long does it take to understand your new Android device? Is this a major mental challenge? The “walled garden” might be there because Apple is afraid of what will happen if users jump the wall. Isn’t this exactly what Apple warned about in the famous 1984 Mac commercial??
    5. How big a deal is a “new” OS? There may even be some advantage to waiting until the bugs are worked out. However, Apple’s approach is cheered by the early adopter lemmings.
    6. Look at Apple’s newest – Apple Pay – Wow! for early apopters; a real boon so far for hackers. Apple Watch – another WOW!; take a look at the stock market’s evaluation of the product.
    7. All in all, Apple is a great company but one that, unfortunately, relies upon masses of people telling each other how wonderful and classy they are because they have an Apple XXX
    I note all of the above in the context of having been an EARLY adopter of Apples(II, etc.) in the 80’s. Have used various of their devices over the past 30 years.

  • KPDriscoll April 15, 2015, 2:52 pm

    I find the following things unfortunate about your opinion on this matter as well as many of the supporting comments:

    1) Android is all about choice. It’s fortunate that you like the decisions that Apple makes for you. I assure you that without the pressure of competition from Android makers, Apple would not be providing the features that their latest models have.
    2) The overconfidence in trusting Apple with their data seems naive. Apple’s character is to look out for themselves. Their proprietary products and 30% take from their community proves that. When it is more profitable for them to do so, Apple will turn on a dime with your data.
    3) First World issues – Apple’s profit margins do not put their products beyond the reach of most of your audience, but it does make these technologies prohibitively expensive to others. Android is a platform that puts technology in the hands of a wider array of the worlds people.

  • nickie April 17, 2015, 7:59 am

    i find each of these reasons to be both wrong and irrelevant at the same time……

    but they tell a lot about apple buyer’s mentality, and what do apple lovers focus on, it’s very revealing how none of these reasons are anywhere near practical criterias such as battery life, value, functionality, but instead have to rely on people camping in front of apple stores to prove a point… only proves that apple enthousiasts are more prone to camp in front a store than an android user, or that apple has more interest in making sure that people will camp in front of their store… (like how you had to preorder the apple watch before to be able to see in in an apple store: pre-order would have their watch now without having seen it , people who want to check it out before buying will only have it in several month.. ) wich does goes well with their reputation of paying more for less or putting no value in anything other than design and branding…

    there are some android devices that fill every of those 5 criterias, and considering that apple is “better” because every android device ever doesn’t fill all those criterias is at best a fallacy, i’ll even say that even tho some apple are neat, some other are quite undefendable at all,

    and when writing the “some have this, some don’t” part, you apparently forgot that apple fits in the “some don’t” most of the time: big megapixels phones aren’t apple, they are nokia lumias or samsung , replaceable batteries just don’t exist within the whole apple range, wireless charging also isn’t an apple thing, no iphone has any microSD slot……. so your argument is that there is “too much choice” outside apple, and that somehow, it is a bad thing? as if choice was scary and you had to say “thank you apple for not giving me any choice”…..

    but this IS the reason why people buy android, paying less, getting more: just as apple’s moto back in the 80’s …..

  • Julie Strietelmeier April 17, 2015, 12:34 pm

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