When it comes to smartphones, consumers either choose Android models or Apple, and they seem to be fiercely loyal to the brands they buy. Technology has advanced to the point that most phones possess great cameras and processors with fantastic screen resolution and versatility.
So how do you know which is the best model to get? It really comes down to your priorities. If the quality of the camera is of paramount importance to you, then choose based on that requirement. If, on the other hand, you’re all about the apps, you might want to go with the phone that gives you the most options.
Here is a breakdown of features of both so you can figure out which phone will float your boat.
If you are an Apple fan, you’ll know it’s all about the Benjamins. The iPhone X probably had some contemplating the value of one of their kidneys as it entered the market at over $1,000. Don’t have a grand spare? Try buying one of the older models which aren’t quite so hard on the wallet, but still pack a bit of a financial punch. The iPhone 6S and SE are the lowest priced in the range unless you start scouring secondhand ads.
When it comes to Android, even those with only a few pennies clinking in their pockets can probably scrape enough together to buy a phone. Sure, you can go nuts with Google’s Pixel 2 phones or Samsung’s Galaxy Note designs, which will set you back a nice dinner at Le Bernadin, or you can play it safe with low-cost handsets that are easy to find and won’t break the bank.
So, if you have the dinero, you may want to go Apple, but if you haven’t, turn thy eyes Android-ward.
Believe it or not, there are more apps out there for Android devices than there are Apple. Much like your brain, however, you probably only use an infinitesimal amount of the power and possibilities that exist in your phone. When it comes down to it, which store gets the best quality apps? At this stage, still Apple, although Android is quickly catching up, particularly in other countries around the world. Android also offers more free apps than Apple.
Neither store is a breeze to navigate, but Apple’s redesigned version in iOS 11 is easier to browse and does well with curated content.
Batteries and charging
One of the biggest factors when it comes to choosing a smartphone is how it rates when it comes to battery life and charging speed. It’s difficult to pinpoint whether Android or Apple wins this, as each model is different.
Many Android phones have fast-charging capabilities and wireless charging, where Apple didn’t until the iPhones 8, 8 Plus and X hit the market. That being said, crafty Apple makes you buy the fast charging adapter separately while it is usually included with Android phones. Bad Apple.
There really isn’t much of a contest here. Android phones are practically bespoke in comparison to their Apple counterparts when it comes to personalization. Users can theme their phones, set up home screen layouts to suit their needs, and add widgets and shortcuts. Apple will let you tweak a little with backgrounds etc, but try as you might, you won’t be able to get away from its very familiar screen layout.
Man … remember when the Apple iPhones were first released with those built-in cameras? The amateur photographer in all of us rejoiced and kicked our snappy handhelds to the curb. The cameras have just got better and better in the iPhones and are a major selling point of the brand. Of course, the lower end Android models can’t compete, but the higher end versions are definitely giving Apple a run for its money. Give Google’s Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL a try and even the most hardened Apple fan may find themselves wavering. The iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X are about the only worthy rivals in this case. Apple’s camera app is probably the easier one to use, but Androids have lots of features. If the camera is a big decider for you, check out the models mentioned.
Calls and messaging
When you think what phones should be mainly about, it’s amusing to have this subject so far down the list. Simply making calls and texts is fine for either Androids or iPhones. Where it gets interesting is messaging. Do you find yourself trying to communicate through iMessage with some people and WhatsApp with others? Are you a FaceTime fan or do you use Android Messages? At this stage, it seems that Apple has the win when it comes to communicating, thanks to consistency, while Androids have a heady mix of options, depending on the brands, that less savvy users could find confusing.
Anyone who has set up email on either platform will know that it is a pretty easy business. If you have multiple accounts, it is no issue to add them and you can even view them in a single inbox if you wish. That being said, when it comes to default email apps, you can’t get much better than Gmail, which is Androids’ strength. Hard to beat the most popular email address system in the world. All of this being said, Apple’s email certainly isn’t a big issue so unless email is top of your list when choosing a phone, this shouldn’t be a factor in your buying decision.
Not too long ago, when people talked about clouds, they pointed at the sky. Now we all know it means storage off your physical devices that can really save the day if you drop, lose, or eat your phone by mistake. Backing up to the cloud is just a way of life these days and it is of great importance to anyone with photos, videos, data and contact on their various handhelds. Starting with Androids, you’ll get more for free with Google Drive giving you 15GB at no charge, whereas you only get 5GB with iCloud. Beyond that, Google Drive is willing to play with all the kids, allowing for cross-platform support. Apple is a bit elitist, only making iCloud available through Windows, Mac and iOS. Both are even when it comes to buying extra storage, but for ease of use, Android with its versatility wins by a nose.
The assumption of most is that Apple products are more secure against malware and viruses than Android devices. That’s not a bad assumption to make. Although exposure for the latter is hyped much more than it should be, it’s all about the updates to keep the latest nasty infiltrator at bay, which is where Android falls short. Regular updates are essential at this time, and some of that responsibility falls on the users. Even if an update becomes available, it needs to be actually installed to do some good.
If you don’t go outside the Play Store for apps, odds are pretty good that you will not become a victim.
When it comes to Apple, not only does it roll out updates at an almost irritatingly fast rate; it also takes user privacy very seriously. Touch ID is on all new iPhone devices and Face ID on the iPhone X takes us into “Mission: Impossible” territory. Apple encrypts data (so does Android, to an extent) in iMessage and its other apps, so your boss should never find out what you said about him. Oh, and in case you hadn’t heard, Apple went to bat with the FBI to guarantee your right to encryption. It’s like the bossy big sister you never had.
So, based on the information above, will you go Android or Apple? Yes, there are great reasons to choose one or the other, but in the end it could be as simple as this: “Boy, that’s a nice-looking phone.”