11 things my Android phone does way better than your iPhone

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The space between Android and iPhone has narrowed dramatically lately. It was once an editorial of religion that iPhones have been technically awesome, and the one explanation why somebody would select Android used to be as a result of they could not find the money for one among Apple’s units or as a result of that they had a philosophical objection to Apple’s “walled lawn.”

Lately, no matter technological gaps as soon as existed between the newest iPhones and the highest Android units have necessarily vanished. Certain, Apple’s CPUs are little engineering marvels, and the hardware is top-notch. However the festival is shut sufficient to make the ones variations simply attention-grabbing somewhat than compelling.

For the previous yr or so, I have been switching between a succession of Android units and 2 iPhones. (At the present time, I’ve a Samsung Galaxy S9+, an iPhone XS, and a Google Pixel three.) Every one is spectacular when checked out strictly by itself deserves. However day in and time out, I in finding I am the usage of the ones Android units, and the iPhone has a tendency to stick on its charging dock once I go away the place of work.

So, what are the criteria, giant and small, that reason me to want Android? Let’s get started with the hardware itself.

You might have much more possible choices in Android hardware.

When you are available in the market for a brand new smartphone, Apple provides 3 hardware possible choices (until you are prepared to shop for remaining yr’s style for a minuscule cut price). The present iPhone lineup is available in two sizes, giant and larger, and two value levels, pricey and in reality pricey. And the ones units are hardly discounted.

In contrast, your Android possible choices quilt quite a lot of sizes, shapes, characteristic units, and worth issues. Some high-end Android units (I am taking a look at you, Samsung) have value tags which can be related to these of a brand new iPhone, however the true candy spot is within the midrange, the place units just like the OnePlus 7 Professional ($669) and the Pixel three ($799) compete face to face with flagship telephones costing as much as two times as a lot.


Even on a decent price range, you’ll be able to get a high quality software just like the Moto G7.

USB-C is the long run, whilst Lightning represents an an increasing number of awkward previous.

From lengthy revel in, I do know 3 issues about Apple’s Lightning cables: They’ve an hectic tendency to damage; they value a small fortune to interchange; they usually require their very own little selection of dongles to be helpful. However, should you personal an iPhone, the ones dear Lightning cables aren’t not obligatory.

They are additionally no longer helpful for anything else that is not any other iPhone or iPad. In the meantime, the Android universe has moved en masse to the extra fashionable and way more flexible USB-C same old. Just about each and every software I personal nowadays makes use of USB-C, together with laptops from Dell, Microsoft, Lenovo, or even … Apple. Once I shuttle, I will be able to elevate a unmarried charger and one cable that works with each and every non-Apple cell software.

Sooner or later, Apple will give up to the inevitable and change its Lightning connectors with USB-C. Till then, it is yet one more cable that iPhone homeowners have to hold.

You wish to have a headphone jack? No downside…

Lift your hand should you’ve ever ready to plug a suite of headphones into your iPhone and found out that you just left that pesky headphone dongle again in your table. Fortunately, there are many Android units (together with the brand new Pixel 3a) that also be offering three.5mm jacks.

From hardware, we transfer to the code that runs underneath the glass, and particularly, to the navigation and group paradigms that outline a cell working gadget

Settings isn’t greater than a swipe away.

Android and iOS be offering an identical shortcuts to get to a few commonplace gadget settings. On an iPhone, you swipe down from the highest proper to get to Regulate Middle, which has a collection of shortcuts you’ll be able to use to activate Plane Mode, modify display screen brightness and quantity, use the calculator, and so forth. The shortcuts make superb use of the Power Contact characteristic.

However what you’ll be able to’t do from Regulate Middle? You’ll be able to’t get to the primary Settings web page. So, you’ll be able to flip Wi-Fi and Bluetooth off and on, however if you wish to pair a brand new software or attach to another get right of entry to level, it’s a must to go out Regulate Middle, in finding the Settings icon, and open it.

Swiping down from the highest of an Android display screen, in contrast, displays a half-dozen commonplace Settings icons above the present notifications. Swipe once more to look a larger collection of Settings icons (customizable, after all). Faucet the label underneath the Wi-Fi or Bluetooth icon to leap immediately to the related Settings web page. Or click on the little equipment icon to open the total Settings checklist.


That tiny equipment icon within the Android settings pane (left) is greatly helpful. iOS (proper) does not have it.

You’ll be able to change the launcher.

The one maximum irritating side of the usage of an iPhone is its rigid house display screen. You get one icon consistent with app, which you’ll be able to in flip organize into folders on more than one displays. However you’ll be able to’t organize the ones icons as you prefer them; you’ll be able to most effective rearrange their order, which makes the entire strategy of organizing the house display screen somewhat like fixing a kind of 15-square puzzles.

On an Android software, in contrast, the default Android launcher is straightforward to interchange. Tool makers continuously do that, with blended effects, however the true get advantages is that you’ll be able to change the default launcher with one that you just want. I in reality just like the Microsoft Launcher, which began out as an aspect venture however has became a major effort, with model five simply across the nook.


Microsoft’s Launcher app is polished and very customizable.

Naturally, the Microsoft Launcher is optimized to paintings with Microsoft apps; thankfully, there is a lovely excellent collection of the ones apps, together with all of the Workplace apps and Outlook for e mail. However even with out the ones apps, it is price it only for the enhancements within the dock.

Pinned icons are in fact helpful.

On an iPhone, icons at the house display screen are shortcuts for person apps, length. You wish to have fast get right of entry to to a specific web site, or photograph, or file? Sorry, you will have to open its app first, then search for it.

In contrast, icons at the Android house display screen can constitute person pieces that don’t seem to be apps. My house display screen has shortcuts to Excel workbooks, pages from OneNote notebooks, or even PDF recordsdata of boarding passes and different digital tickets.

Android has widgets! At the house web page!

Each Android and iOS be offering a different house web page, to be had by way of swiping proper, the place you’ll be able to upload widgets for fast(er) get right of entry to to calendar pieces, climate forecasts, a information feed, and so forth.

On my Android telephone, regardless that, I will be able to upload widgets without delay to the primary house display screen. The center-piece of my house display screen this present day, as an example, is a widget from the Darkish Sky app, which displays the present date and time in a big, easy-to-read layout, with a four-day climate forecast underneath it.

Will have to learn

You’ll be able to upload widgets for e mail and calendar apps, tune avid gamers, cloud products and services. Google and Microsoft each have a big collection of widgets, or even Apple has an Android widget for its Apple Tune participant. In my revel in, widgets are easiest used sparingly, however they in reality can enhance productiveness.

There is a Again button.

For its first decade or so, iPhone had one and just one button, which you’ll want to faucet, double-tap, or press and dangle to perform duties. Android, in contrast, traditionally incorporated a row of 3 comfortable buttons alongside the ground. The House and Recents buttons serve as just about the similar as the faucet and double-tap choices on a vintage iPhone, however the Again button is exclusive.

On each platform, the devoted app buttons are slowly disappearing, changed by way of a chain of gestures, however the concept that of a devoted Again serve as in Android stays. App builders take a look at all varieties of tips to reflect that capability in iOS apps, with blended effects, however I pass over the Again button each and every time I take advantage of an iPhone for any duration of time.

You’ll be able to transparent all notifications with a unmarried faucet.

There’s some kind of set of rules that governs the show of notifications at the iPhone house display screen, however I’m going to be damned if I will be able to determine it out. Occasionally there is a giant X that you’ll be able to faucet to transparent older notifications; different occasions the one solution to eliminate notifications is one after the other.

You’ll be able to additionally set up how notifications are grouped and when they are displayed on iOS, however to do this it’s a must to go out Notification Middle and move to Settings > Notifications.

On Android units, each duties are a lot more practical. Whilst you swipe all the way down to show present notifications, there is a Transparent All button on the backside of the checklist. There may be additionally a Organize Notifications hyperlink that jumps without delay to the related web page in Settings, the place you’ll be able to customise choices for each and every app. The ones are small touches, however they scale back friction and make on a regular basis usability significantly better.

You’ll be able to alternate your default browser.

On both cell platform, browsers use the underlying engine equipped by way of the working gadget. The principle explanation why for the usage of another browser is to avoid wasting and sync shortcuts, tabs, passwords, and historical past throughout units.

On an iPhone, you’ll be able to outline Open With settings on a per-app foundation, so the Gmail app opens hyperlinks in Chrome or Outlook opens hyperlinks in Edge. However you’ll be able to’t outline that browser choice systemwide, so should you open a hyperlink from any other app, it’s going to virtually unquestionably open in Safari.

That isn’t an issue in Android, because of the Default Apps environment, the place you’ll be able to specify which browser you wish to have to make use of for hyperlinks. Whilst there, you’ll be able to additionally select trade apps to make use of for telephone calls, SMS messages, voice lend a hand, and tap-to-pay purposes, too.

The quantity keep an eye on is way more versatile.

Regardless of who makes your cell software, it’s going to have Quantity Up and Quantity Down buttons at the facet. It is going to even have separate, software-based quantity controls. However iOS and Android deal with the ones controls in very alternative ways.

On an iPhone, you’ll be able to modify the ringer quantity independently of alternative sounds by way of going to Settings > Sound and Haptics, and turning the Exchange With Buttons possibility off. Select a quantity for the ringer, and you are accomplished. In that configuration, you’ll be able to silence the ringer with the transfer simply above the quantity controls, however the Quantity Up/Down buttons will impact most effective gadget sounds and apps.

Android, in contrast, has the technique to permit other quantity settings for calls, media, notifications, alarms, and ringtones. That is particularly helpful on lengthy highway journeys, the place you’ll be able to mute notification sounds in order that they do not interrupt the tune you are taking note of.


Android provides unbiased controls over several types of sounds; iOS does not.

That is my checklist. If you have got a unique set of annoyances or a workaround I neglected right here, please go away a remark.

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