Android vs iOS - a perspective!

Time flies, exactly a year back the first (and only) iOS device joined the gadget army at home. iPhone 6S was the highlight of 2016. It has been the primary phone since. Nexus 6P is always alongside as well. Nexus 6P is the last from the Nexus generation by Google before Pixel's arrived.

Apple's demo of iOS 10 was the push to buy and experiment with iPhone 6S, but it could not take away the love from Nexus 6P. Most of the time all the devices in the home are running the bleeding edge software - The Beta versions. iPhone has never stayed away from the iOS 10 beta releases and recently been running iOS 11 betas. Nexus has been running the Android O beta and going strong.

Android and iOS are different ecosystems, but neither of them is superior over each other. Both rule the smartphone markets and have won hearts over the primitive platforms. Both Nexus 6P and iPhone 6S have there high's and low's due to the platforms.

After using the Android and iOS side-by-side for a year here is the experience of high from both the worlds. These are not limited to the ones listed here, yet are functionalities missed on either.

Android High's

  • Making a Call: Android makes is easy to call a contact. Open the native Phone app, select the number from the Favourites list. If the contact is not in favorites, use the search bar on the same screen and make that call. iOS requires extra steps to make that call.

phone_app

  • Split screen: Android now (since Nougat version) supports native split screen. The split screen comes handy when using two apps that you need at the same time. Split screen on the Nexus 6P is a breeze, due to its large screen. On a landscape mode, it is very productive. The feature can be a negative point if you use the keyboard while in split screen.

splitscreen

  • Download files: Android has given users the power to go computer free. It comes in handy during situations when you need to download any file. There is no restriction on the format of the file being download. At times, it has even allowed downloading installation files for both Mac and Windows. The downloaded file formats have varied from mp4s, mp3s, documents, presentations, installation files and even scripts. It works for any file type tested till now.

  • Notifications: Notifications have been Android forte since the first version. Over the years the notifications have improved and got more productive. These now allow you to reply to a message and take quick actions without the need of opening the app.

  • Smooth Scrolling: Open the Chrome browser to go to any website and the scrolling is smooth. Going to the top or bottom on the website will be lag free, while on iOS it'd be a different experience. Even in the app drawer on Android, the scrolling from top to bottom is super smooth.

iOS - High's

  • Easy Scroll: iOS offers a shortcut to scroll up in any app. A simple tap on the status bar and the app will scroll all the way up. This is useful when you are viewing any web page, contacts list, messages, etc.

  • Power on after plugging: One of the biggest gripes with Android devices is to switch on the phone after the battery has depleted. Even when you plug the charger, this is a necessary step. Manually turning-on can be skipped on the iPhone. The iPhone turns on itself when connected to a charger while the iPhone battery has depleted. This also means, no charging while the phone stays turned-off.

  • Swipe to go Back: Android design requires a dedicated back button on the devices. The iOS design uses swipe to the right for the same back action. It was difficult during the initial stage, and the fingers kept looking for the back button on the iPhone. After few weeks, the fingers switched the roles and were swiping right on the Android, but in vain.

  • Home button Gestures: iPhone 6S has a small profile compared to the Nexus 6P. There are times when it becomes difficult to reach the top corners on the opposite. iOS design has it sorted with gestures on the home button. Double tap on the home button shifts the screen to mid of the device. There are times when there is a need of this on the bigger Nexus.
  • Native text expander: Sometimes small things have big impacts. This is what I can say for the text expander feature. It comes handy when you are typing phrases or when sharing phone number often. It ensures easy sharing of home or office address. A simple mapping of complete address to the short key will prompt the full address when typed in any text field. The text expander works even for email addresses. Textexpander is available under the Settings > General > Keyboard settings

textexpander

  • MacOS Friendly: There is no doubt that iOS is more MacOS friendly since they both come from Apple. MacID makes the experience even better along with the handoff feature available on iOS and MacOS. Handoff makes it simple to continue the task from iOS to MacOS and vis-a-verse. Accessing the iPhone hotspot from MacBook is simple via the handoff as well.

  • iMessage: Messaging is one powerful app on iOS, which the Android is yet to crack. Even with all the messaging apps combined from Android - Allo, Hangouts and Android Messaging. iMessage's goodness gets enhanced with MacOS alongside. Once registered it detects if the other person is using iMessage. If they are, then the message will deliver as a data message. If the recipient is on Android or any device other than iPhone, the message goes as SMS. The color coding of the messages between data or SMS makes it easy to figure out others on iPhone.

There is not one ecosystem that rules, Android and iOS have their high and low points. Both will exist alongside and even have their fanboys and fangirls. Choosing between either is a user's personal choice depending on comfort.

An ideal platform should combine features from both Android and iOS to deliver an experience to benefit all.

Share your experiences of your choice between iOS and Android in the comments below.

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