Is An Android Handset Better Than An iPhone?

By | January 14, 2014
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A comparative study of the Android and iOS mobile platforms throws up several interesting findings. We would here focus on certain points which make an Android handset seemingly more user-friendly than an iPhone.

 

From the very outset, let it be known that we are not judging the two mobile OS and application development platforms on the basis of quality or technological excellence. Both Android and iOS powered devices are enormously popular all round the globe – and, understandably, there is no glaring weakness in either of them. Even so, there are certain points which indicate that Android phones are at an advantage, compared to iPhone handsets. Readers would here be familiarized with some of these factors:

 

  1. Presence of widgets on home screen – Of course, iPhones also support a wide range of widgets, but they can be stored only on the lock screen of devices. On the other hand, all widgets can be placed on the home screen of Android handsets. The only thing you need to ensure is that the home screen does not become too cluttered with these widgets. Since the widgets are relatively more easily accessible on Android phones, their usability becomes higher too.

  2. Performance in the Cloud environmentiPhone app development in India has improved greatly, but it still has a long way to go – to come close to matching the speed and reliability of internet-enabled services on Android phones. Right from the Gmail app and general Google search applications, to the web calendar functions – Android comes up trumps on practically all counts. iPhones, however, are still bogged down by the lousy Apple Maps app, dicey wireless connectivity, and an unnecessary Photo Stream application – none of which can be really relied upon.

  3. Compatibility with third-party keyboards – Apple phones run with Apple keyboards – there are no two ways about it. Even on the all-new iOS 7 interface, you do not have the scope of using high-class third-party keyboards (like SwiftKey) with an iPhone. On Android handsets, there are no such restrictions – and typing on your mobile screen can be made way easier, by using the third-party keyboard feature that you are most comfortable with.

  4. Better syncing facilities with computers – You can always plug in your iPhone (via VNC) with your computer – but iPhone application development companies in India or abroad are yet to come up with a separate app for controlling handsets through a PC. Android sets do not, however, disappoint on this count. At the Google Play Store, you will find quite a few mobile applications that are meant for syncing smartphones and computers in a much more seamless manner.

  5. Option to go ‘back’ – Many Android-phone users from across the world harp on the user-friendly in-phone navigation features they offer – and that has a lot to do with the presence of the ‘Back’ button in these sets. On an iPhone, there is no option to ‘undo’ your action, once mobile apps have been launched. You will have to tap your way back to the home screen, before doing anything else. If you use an Android phone though, you can easily tap the ‘Back’ button to return to any window of your choice. Quicker, and decidedly easier!

  6. Adding attachments to emails – If you cannot view the file system setup on your phone, you will, of course, have problems in attaching documents to emails – and it is surprising that Apple or any other iPhone application development company have done nothing to address the issue. Android-users can attach files in practically all formats easily with their emails. Compare that with devices powered by iOS 7, where you need to use the ‘Share’ properties of another application, to attach Word, Excel or PPT files.

  7. Battery-saving features – No smartphone comes with out-of-the-world battery life, but here too, Android sets steal a march over iPhones. The Tasker application of the former is the chief factor for this – since you can use it to turn off mobile apps on your phone, as and when required. In the absence of such automated app-management features, you need to close every app manually on an iPhone. If you neglect to do this, the iPhone battery would die soon.

  8. Better app notification features – Android handsets ensure that you do not ever miss out on even a single app notification – an assurance that not even the most technologically advanced iPhone can provide. Notifications can be grouped and modified in a much better, systematic way on Android phones, and there are no chances of a notification getting hidden (a possibility in iPhones, particularly if the volume of notifications is large). Cleaning the app-drawer is a quicker and simpler task on Android phones than on iPhones too.

  9. More app-usage flexibility – Yes, using third-party mobile applications on iPhone by jailbreak is an option – but do you really want to lose the warranty on your handset, for an app you have not even tried? If you wish to play by the rule book, you necessarily have to choose apps from only the iTunes store for your handset. An Android set, on the other hand, is much better for downloading and using third-party, custom mobile applications. Why be restricted in the choice of apps available to you?

  10. Browsing for new apps – With the number of apps present in the Apple store being in excess of one million – it is hardly an easy (or quick) task to browse through them, and select the ones you need. However, for Android handsets, there are separate applications (e.g., AppBrain) that perform precisely this function, within a matter of seconds. Whenever you have some spare time on hand, you can look for new mobile apps by using the wireless network of your Android handset.

 

The extendable memory features of Android phones (via microSD cards) also put them at an advantage over iPhones. In terms of general screen customization too, the Google-powered handsets are regarded to be better. For transferring files to and from mobile phones, NFC for Android is way more convenient than AirDrop for iOS 7. iPhones surely have many things going in favor of them, but Android handsets might just be a tad more user-friendly!

 

Hussain Fakhruddin
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Hussain Fakhruddin

Hussain Fakhruddin is the founder/CEO of Teknowledge mobile apps company. He heads a large team of app developers, and has overseen the creation of nearly 600 applications. Apart from app development, his interests include reading, traveling and online blogging.
Hussain Fakhruddin
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