Androids vs. iPhones. The discussion continues. When the iPhone first hit the market, there was really no competition. The iPhone was playing in a class of its own. First Android phones were mediocre: slow UI response, lags here and there, and the overall “assemble-it-yourself” approach just didn’t with consumers.
Hardware and Model Selection
With Apple, you are always limited to just a few models. Or, rather, you can choose from only 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 phones, on the other hand, come in all sorts of shapes, models and colors. Various manufacturers use entirely different hardware. Different displays, CPUs, memory. Vastly different reliability and usability. Buying an Android phone will require you to do a market research, whereas you can’t go wrong with any current iPhone. Are you a techno geek or a gadget guy? Look for an Android phone that flies with you. The rest will be served by Apple.
The newest generation of iPhones has a superb Retina display. These super high pixel density screens will display your apps, icons and graphics so crisp it’s hard to believe. Kudos to Apple: they made one of the best screens ever.
Androids ship with all kinds of displays. Some of the better ones can reach iPhones in pixel density, but software integration is still lagging. Many applications still have low-resolution icons and images designed to be displayed on lower-resolution displays. When choosing an Android phone, you will have to watch really carefully to buy a model with a good display. If you’re not good with numbers, icon dimensions, angles of view and technical specs, just get an iPhone for the best screen ever.
Firmware and UI
An iPhone is an iPhone. They’re all the same. One operating system, one UI, the same set of pre-installed apps, same icons. You can customize it by moving things around and choosing a few icons on your own, but there’s only so much you’re allowed to do.
Androids come in all sorts of flavor. Different firmware and dozens of OS versions, builds and editions. Different sets of icons for exactly the same app. Completely different shells and launchers. Fully customizable: you can make Android phones look like whatever you want (and it’s not all about custom icons) – but you must know what you’re doing. With such a huge variety, some models are simply better as in simpler to use, more stable and working faster than others. If building your very own custom environment is fun for you, by all means buy the Android. If you like it working straight out of the box, get an iPhone and begin using it right away.
iPhones don’t don’t accept memory cards. You’ll be stuck with the amount of memory you originally bought. If you outgrow your iPhone, you’ll have to pay for another iPhone, bringing more money to Apple.
Most but not all Android devices come with a microSD slot, allowing you to add more memory when you need it. With flash memory 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 won’t hold charge after 3-4 years), you’ll be mailing your iPhone to Apple for a “major repair” (more dough to Apple), or be shopping for a new iPhone (even more dough to Apple).
While some Android devices use similarly user irreplaceable batteries, most phones are easy: just lift the back 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 more affordable to buy and more affordable to upgrade and maintain. They’re more extensible and customizable. iPhones work great right out of the box, and offer one of the best usage experience ever. Which one to pick? The choice is yours.