I have been using an Android mobile for well over 10 years. I started off on that line thanks to advice from an operator at Orange who, when my mobile contract upgrade came up, suggested the HTC Hero. It was not the first smartphone I had ever used, but it was the first in the modern line of truly connected and accessible devices with a large App environment and I was immediately smitten.
So, throughout the intervening years I have ( like most of us ) experimented with many models. For a while remaining loyal to HTC, though ending up running with the immensely popular Samsung Galaxy Series and finally, currently using a Xiaomi model. During this process I did try the iphone upon a few occasions as a loan or business phone and enjoyed it, but always returned stolidly to Android.
There was always something about the iPhone that irked me somewhat; the way that people would ask me “wow I would have thought that you would have an iPhone” or “why on earth are you using that” – or indeed the way that people flashed their iPhones around like they were something special, the way that people would tell me how great their iPhones were and start listing the things that they could do. I did, indeed, find this rather abhorrent and to a large extent this fandom of the “Jesus Mobe” played a large part in keeping me away from the whole IOS experience.
That said there were ( and are ) good reasons for me sticking with Android. I make heavy the Google ecosystem : Maps, YouTube, Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Keep, Hangouts, Analytics, Chrome, Google Photos etc and these apps are integral to my digital experience. Further I like that I can drag and drop files to the phone’s storage ( or memory card for that matter ). I like the widgetised areas on the home screens and I like the variety of handsets on offer. I am also cynically opposed to the notion that any company is nice and friendly when it clearly has a huge focus on profit and text evasion ( that is my personal view – not that of Telephone Online ) .
Well, as the head of IT in my family it is my duty to provide mobile phones for various people and following me giving away spare handsets and replacing kids phones and upgrading a child’s iPhone my Xiaomi gave up the ghost. Well it developed a fault which entailed ordering a replacement part from China.
So I had to use the one remaining handset in the family mobile drawer – an iPhone 5s…
How I moved from Android to IOS
OK the initial steps were relatively simple – with the Xiaomi I removed the memory card ( full of music ) and put it into an old tablet, I took the SIM card out ( micro ) and converted it into a Nano SIm ( easy with GiffGaff’s SIM Cards ) and interested into the iPhone. The iPhone needed charging so I managed to find a Lightning Cable ( struck now by the worry that now I am in competition with the kids for charging cables ) and get the thing booted up. I also ordered ( from China the replacement part for the Xiaomi.
As one may imagine the initial steps were simple, save that I am constantly annoyed by how frequently an Iphone asks for a password ( an annoyance obliterated subsequently by the fingerprint recognition thing ). I synched up with iTunes on my laptop and risked adding a few GB of music to it as well.
Then I set about installing some of my favourite apps – the Google ones above initially and was happy to see that they were just as good ( I won’t admit any were better ) and, indeed, I as able to set the Google contacts as the default on the iPhone which made everything happy as Larry.
A bit of what can only be described as dicking around ensued, putting some of the icons into folders and moving them around and then testing each familiar app individually. I did opt for Google Maps over Apple as there is legacy data in there, also I wanted to ensure that my Google GPS Timeline remained unbroken. I installed by banking apps and surfing and fitness stuff as well and then tried some games..The first couple of games installed and played very well but I was a bit ruffled to see that a favourite Android Game ( free ) was £4.99 in the App Store.
Thoughts on using the iPhone
The Apple parts of the phone : sound, dialling, camera, music all were a breeze to use. The operating system, though unfamiliar, was intuitive to use ( as if it had been designed for fools ) and the battery life was good. I was pleased that the Google Apps kept my experience and file/ task handling processes as normal. All in all I was not put off by having to use the Apple device ( though i noticed that I subconsciously tried to hide it when in public ). There is/ was little doubt that the iPhone is a very well designed mobile and I started to feel worried that I could slip to the dark side.
What I missed about Android
Using the iPhone there were times when I rued the lack of freedom that Android gives the user. At one moment I wanted to send an mp3 file to a relative to play whilst on holiday and the iPhone just doesn’t support such things ( it could be sensible in light of DRM ) – but there were other things. I was on holiday and without access to my PC so could not move files on and off my device easily. I missed the immediate reference that widgets give for such things as weather, tides, sports results etc. Like I know that Apple has aped a lot of these features with each iteration of IOS – but it’s just not the same. Whilst my old tablet was supplying all of my music from its 64gig memory card the iPhones available few giggage just didn’t have the space. I have to add that the iPhone’s keyboard and autocorrect did my head in.
Much as in the way in which it doesn’t really matter whether you use a Mac or a PC – in normal use – as most of us turn on and access all content through a browser – one can make he transition from Android to iPhone very easily as the in app experience is pretty consistent.
After a month I realised that the replacement part from China was not coming so I cancelled that order, got a refund, ordered from a UK seller and received it in two days and, once fixed, I flew back to my happy place in Android heaven…..The iPhone hardware and ecosystem may have been superior but Android gives me more freedom in design, display and function.
It has been pointed out that the reverse situation ie moving from IOS to Android is likely fraught with multiple issues. It is not so easy to move from an Apple device to an Android one due to the way in which iMessage is integrated and that Apple’s features such as iCloud, Facetime, Contacts etc are not available on Android devices.