Source: Times of India (16-July-2017)

iPhone vs Android: Which one should you pick?

(Text Source: ‘ISAUMYA’ portal)

Now we live in an era where using light for internet (LiFi) is not a science fiction anymore. In this fast life of ours, one thing that has become a very critical part of our life is smart phone. Just a few years back, to the general public smart phone was just another fiction and merely anything important for daily life. But standing in this time, we all know that for most people, passing a single day without smart phone or maybe with smart phone but without internet access has become a phobia. When it comes to purchasing a new smart phone, mostly we have to choose between two paths. One paths lead towards iPhone and the other one towards Android.

Before starting this article, I must admit that the motive of this article is to end the iPhone vs Android fan wars always happens on the web. Some Apple fans throws wild theories to prove iPhone is better than Android. On the other hand, android fans do the same. So, if you are also a sadist person like these people, this might not be the article for you. Because I’m fan of both companies i.e. Apple as well as Google. But on the other hand I’m not a blind fan. I like apple for certain things and android for others.

So, in short this article is all about providing facts instead of wild speculations and to help you decide which smart phone might be best for you. I will also explain the facts about, why iPhone is such an iconic phone rather than android. So, if this topic make you feel interested, keep reading.

All about iPhone

If you are thinking about purchasing an iPhone (regardless of model), you should read the following things very carefully, where I’m going to discuss the Pros and Cons of iPhone & it’s environment. Now, for some people the cons can actually be pros if they are not very geeky or tech savvy people.

Pros of iPhone

  • Design: This is the part for which I’m a big fan of Apple, as I said earlier. Apple is the only company in the world who knows how to speak thousand words just by visualization and aesthetics. No other company has the design quality like Apple. So, with every iPhone you will obviously get an extreme premium phone with brilliantly designed operating system.
  • User Experience: If you are already an apple user, then you will find the user interface very familiar and much easy to use. You will feel homelier on iPhone if you already using a previous version of iPhone or you are a part of Apple ecosystem.
  • Performance: Though all iPhone runs the specs of the last year’s high end spec list, but as they have an extremely closed ecosystem along with proprietary hardware in it. The phone runs extremely smooth even if the latest generation iPhone last year’s high end spec. The reason of this is iPhone is only made by apple, no other company built it. So, they have a much wider space to tweak the last gen hardware along with tweaking their operating system to provide that blazing fast performance.
  • Brilliant Camera: iPhone is always popular for it’s extraordinary camera and image processing capability. No matter which iPhone you use and how many megapixel camera it has in it, I can guarantee you that it performs better or sometimes at par with the best possible smart phone camera with that image optics. Apple truly take the image processing and camera quality very seriously. There is almost no iPhone out there which has a bad camera and take awful photos.
  • Good Display: Even the latest iPhone might not have the best mobile screen out there, but it is good enough. That days are gone when Apple used to scream about retina display, because now a days most other smart phone has better screen than current gen iPhone. But this doesn’t mean that it’s display is bad. Like the camera all iPhone has a brilliant display with proper color intensity, brightness, viewing angles etc. It might not have the highest resolution screen, but considering the small batter all iPhone have, the display of iPhone is simply brilliant.
  • Awesome App Store: Apple has a brilliant app store with millions of popular apps in it. So, if you are looking to do something, there might be an app for your exact need already there in the app store. Also most of these apps are always properly maintained and updated by the app developers so that you always get the best user experience and have to face the least amount of bugs. There are certain creative apps which are exclusively available of iOS environment only, which make them exclusive to apple products.

Cons of iPhone

  • Overpricing: Apple is a company whose business model is based upon overcharging their customers considering the product they are selling. Do you know building an iPhone barely cost the half of its price they you are paying to apple? Apple is the company that has the largest profit margin in this world. Every apple product you purchase, if it would not have been an Apple product, it would cost just a quarter of what you are paying now. Apple overcharge you just for using their brand in your life. If you are still thinking then why people still purchase iPhone, well just keep reading.
  • Overpriced App Store: If you compare Google Play store with apple’s app store, you will see that many apps that are completely free on android is chargeable in the app store. There is actually a very positive reason behind it. When you are purchasing an iPhone, apple already knew that either you are already a member of apple ecosystem or you have enough money to spare. So, if you have enough money, why not we charge you more. On the other hand, as android is an open planform and not so many limitations are there, you will find most iOS paid apps for free. When you are getting an apple device, you are getting a premium device and you will have to keep paying premium for rest of your life as long as you use it.
  • Complexity of Closed System: As apple believes in closed system environment, they like to force people to do simple task the way they want you to do instead of whatever way you like it. This might not be a con for someone who already a part of apple ecosystem and uses iMacs, Macbooks etc. but this is a real problem for all user who wanna live outside the apple ecosystem and still want to use iPhone. One very common example of this is how music gets syncs with iPhone and iPods. If you already have an apple computer, then you won’t find any problem on this as you use iTunes every day for music. But this is a big problem for someone on either Windows or Linux OS. As there is no way to just copy and paste music, you must have to sync it through iTunes, by keeping your music in a special folder.
  • Smaller Battery: This is one of the big problem with all iPhone. As apple spend more time and money on making the iPhone look more premium, making it thinner and durable, battery power is something that apple takes into the consideration as secondary objective. This is really bad. Considering everyday how much phones are becoming powerful, it must need bigger battery.
  • No Customizability: iPhones has the same home screen for years, though it is much user friendly to some users but to others it become boring overtime. There is no way to get pass this. Even if you jailbreak your phone, you still only a get a hand few extra options to tweak unlike in android where if you root your device, it opens up a brand new world for you.

In short iPhone is a premium device apple manufacture for people who has capability to purchase it at that premium price and keep overpaying for apps, as they already have enough money to spare. Saying all that you also have keep in mind that iPhone is not just a phone, it is a beautiful piece of hardware which has been breathtakingly designed not just in the outside, but also inside.

All about Android

Though android has a very long history behind it even before it become a part of Google, believe it or not there actually was a time in Google when the googlers thought that android project is just a waste of time and was thinking about dumping the project all together. But then something magical happen with the launch of first nexus device. People (mostly geeks) started liking it and from then on, android has never looked back.

Though in the early days (before android v4.1 – Jelly Bean) android was extremely laggy and has a lot of bugs in it, which causes many apps to force close often times. But after Jelly Bean release android has suddenly become way mature in term of coding, stability and smoothness. The current versions of android devices (from late 2014) has lesser touch response time than iPhone, which is completely spectacular.

Even today android devices sometimes feel a little laggy after using it for a few months. But trust me, this has nothing to do with android itself. All these laggyness comes from the extra toppings (a.k.a bloatware) added by the phone manufactures. For some reason, all phone manufacturer created their own skinned version of android to brand themselves and this is what create the whole mess.

Due to the extra skins and bloatware which runs on top of vanilla android not only just eat more resource of your phone but also no phone manufacturer spend that amount of huge money to optimize their skins to run smooth. They just care about spec sheet, camera and skin. Infact this is one of the major reason I never suggest anyone to buy an android device which doesn’t run stock vanilla android or very closer to this.

My most favorite choice is a Nexus device. As it is built with Google, it runs the OS in the best possible optimized way, because Google know each phone they have manufactured and it’s easy to fine tune and optimize the code for their own phone to run the OS buttery smooth. Not to mention superfast updates directly from Google. As there is no bloatware, skins added on top of android, they don’t need to update the code of their skins to push the OS update. In short a nexus device is just like an apple product, coming directly from the creators of the software itself.

Besides nexus, now quite a few company is taking this vanilla android approach with as little added bloatware as possible. So, my next chose will be Motorola devices as they also run a copy of android that is very close to stock OS, which help them to push fast updates to their consumers. But if your lifestyle needs those skinned OS features, as an example if you need a stylus in your phone a Samsung Note series will be much better for you.

Pros of Andriod

  • Openness: Openness is not just a strong philosophy which runs behind android, it is actually the only reason android became so popular in the first place. As android is open, every phone manufacturer can build their own dream devices, made as many modifications they want to do within the OS without any worry. Infact this openness is the only reason android had overtaken iPhone in the first place. Not just in terms of specs, but in terms of features too.
  • Competition: As android is an open OS and so many company is building devices on top it. An extreme competition always works behind the sense. As there are so many manufacturing companies, all pay through the nose for Research & Development and always search for new breakthroughs and innovation. This is something never going to be seen for iPhone. As apple is the only manufacturer who build it, there is not so much competition for apple like these android device manufacturers. But this is a great thing, because if this competition wasn’t there and if their companies wouldn’t spend arms and legs on R&D, we wouldn’t have seen technologies that are way ahead of iPhone.
  • Customizability: This is one of the best thing about android and the very reason why so many people love using it. If you have an android device and you start feeling boar with this device after a few months, you can completely re-customize your device with a few apps and make it look like a brand new device. In short you can customize it whatever way you can dream of, which is something not possible in iPhone.
  • No Shackle: Unlike iPhones, in android there no hard and fast rules as how you should use your device, It’s completely up to you at whatever way you like to use it. As an example if you wanna add some music in your android device, there is no rule that you must have to use some specific software to sync it. You can either attach your device with computer via a USB cable and then transfer it like the same way you do file transfer in flash drives or there are apps which will allow you to do this over WiFi. In the end there is also applications like iTunes which you can use if you like. So, it gives a much more choice in your hands.
  • Strong Community: Like every other open source software android is also a community driven OS. Andriod has a very big community of developers constantly supporting and tweaking it. This not just helps to create more awesome apps, but also helps on creating new mods, finding bugs, vulnerabilities very soon that other closed system OS. But like every other open source software, not everyone has good intentions. So sometimes bad people find various vulnerabilities easily as they can also have the access to the source code. But in the end, the strong android community always finds a way to fix it.
  • Ultimate Root Access: Unlike JailBreaking in iOS, rooting an android devices grant you system level access, which allows you to do much more system level tweaks and tasks. If you root your device, you can add custom ROMs, remove bloatware apps and do many other cool stuffs. But this is something with is 100% Geek Alert stuffs, because at the time of rooting if you perform something wrong or after rooting if you do some wrong tweaking, it can transform your phone to a brick. So, I will not suggest this for 99% of general users. But as you know, you have to chance to do these, which you don’t get in iPhone.
  • Unlimited Choice: When it comes to smart phone, we all have different needs. A business man might look for a more productive device while someone else might look for an entertainment device. As we all have different needs and as there are so many android phones and phone manufacturer out there. You can get the exact phone you are looking for with your desired features. This is something you will never see or get on iPhone.
  • Amazing App Store: Google Play Store is the app store that has the highest number of apps (1.5 million) in the marketplace. Apple store is in the second position with 1.4 million available apps. If you are in the android ecosystem, and looking for an app which can do certain task, chances are there is already one or more apps present in the play store to do what you are looking for. But one thing I must say that most premium apps first come in Apple’s App Store, before hitting Google Play Store and also there are certain apps which are only for iOS devices and is not available in android. So, if you must need to use apps at the day it releases, sometimes you might get disappointed with android, as it releases later.

Cons of Andriod

  • Laggyness: This is one of the most common issue faced by most android users, specially who buy cheaper android phones which costs less than $250. As the cheaper phones got slower specs, small ram and extra bloadware, skins added by the manufacturer, if you try to perform something heavy or play intense games or keep lot of apps in the memory your phone going to be very slow. As I said above the current generation of vanilla android has no laggyness and is actually smoother than iOS, but what makes android so laggy is the phone manufacturer by adding crappy, un-optimized bloatware apps which you cannot remove and will keep eating your memory, unless you root. If you want a smoother iPhone-like experience on android I will highly recommend you to go with Nexus devices and tablets only. If you ever use nexus, you will not ever complain about andriod’s laggyness.
  • Security: As android is an open source operating system, it’s much easier for hackers to get a copy of the OS and then look for vulnerabilities. It’s not just android, this is a common problem of the whole open source philosophy. As the OS is out in open, anyone can access it and tweak it in their own way. This is something never happens to iOS. As it is a closed system, it’s hard to get hands on the OS codes. But again thanks to the extreme android community filled with crazy coders and hackers, whenever anyone in the community find any loophole they inform it to Google to fix it. But again if you are using a non nexus device, you will not get the updates as soon as Google releases it, besides you have to wait for your phone manufacturer to update their bloatware apps and skins to be compatible with the new version before they push it to the crowd.
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