Choosing a smartphone is more than just what looks good to you. There are a lot of factors that can make a difference when choosing the best mobile phone for you. If you’ve been around a while you know that there is a huge debate on whether Apple or Android is better. Although you can turn to a number of companies to buy one of the best phones, whatever you get is guaranteed to be running one of the two prominent mobile operating systems: iOS (if you pick an iPhone) or Android (if you opt for anything else).
Both iOS and Android are pretty advanced, having been around for over a decade at this point, and there’s not much that one can do that the other can’t. However, they still each have their advantages and there are reasons you might choose one over the other.
It can be a little overwhelming trying to understand which would be the best fit for you, so we’re here with the breakdown that you need in order to buy your next smartphone.
1.The Apple Ecosystem
If you own other Apple products such as a MacBook, iPad, or Apple Watch, getting an iPhone makes the most sense. Apple has designed a multitude of features that allow you to access your data and information from one device to another. Only a handful of Android phone makers have hardware ecosystems that approach Apple's, and even for some that come close, like Samsung, you won't get the depth of integration possible between the iPhone and other Apple-built devices. This depth of integration and continuity across the iOS systems is an important factor when considering your next smartphone.
Additionally, we do recommend bearing in mind what type of phones your friends and family have. Apple phones work better with other Apple phones, if your entire social circle has iPhones it might be something to think about as you buy your next phone.
This is a debatable one, but overall we’ve found that most applications just have better quality and run more smoothly on iOS. Apps from established companies, from banks to airlines, are always a bit cleaner and smoother on iOS than Android with better integration with the phone's internal services (like the Apple Watch for example). Traditionally, iOS has been a more lucrative platform for developers, so there has been a tendency for new apps to appear there first and the best mobile games always come to iOS first. Although Android is catching up, Apple still has them beat on quality in this category.
3. Software Updates
In general, Android gets fewer updates than iPhones and when they do they happen less frequently and are often delayed. Android updates are usually determined by how expansive it is, what carrier you buy it from, and what the phone software policy support is.
iPhone’s in comparison, are supported with major software updates each year for many years after the phone’s original release. iPhone 6S for example which will be able to update to the newest iOS 15 even though it originally launched with iOS 9 back in 2015. Samsung’s Galaxy S6 launched the same year and stopped receiving updates years ago, it only had two updates before Samsung pulled the plug on its support.
Additionally, when a new iOS version is released it is available to everyone on the same day and can be installed on all the models that support it instantly. In contrast, Android releases are rolled out in waves to individual phones. Which can be frustrating if you’re waiting on the latest features in the update.
If something goes wrong with your phone and you need support, or you need a screen protector, a new charger, or a new case - it’s nice to have a place to go and a professional handle any problems. Apple not only comes with it’s own store but also typically has more accessible support in general. Apple is simply more popular, especially in the US, so there’s more professional support for whatever your needs may be.
If you are looking for a phone for someone close to you who isn’t so great with technology we tend to recommend you go with Apple. Ultimately, iOS is simpler and easier to use in some important ways. It’s uniform across all devices and is less cluttered and more streamlined than the Android platform. Basically, iOS is simple and clean, definitely a better choice for people who are new to tech.
There are smartphones out there for every budget (especially if you buy refurbished, wink wink) however, it is true that no matter how much you’re looking to spend you can probably find an Android device that fits your budget. While iPhones have typically been expensive when first launched, only coming down in price after a new phone is released.
Android is the choice for you if you like to tinker and personalize your device. While Apple is catching up to this with the release of Widgets in iOS 14, Android has had dynamic widgets that allow you to place apps basically anywhere you want to, even out of sight. Android also allows you to download third-party replacements for central services like web browsers, keyboards, and media places and then set them as your default.
Not to mention with Android you can sometimes even expand your storage. This is becoming less popular on newer phones but many Android phones still offer it. This allows you to use a microSD card to keep music, apps, photos, and other media that won’t fit on your devices main internal memory. This allows you to to buy a phone with smaller storage (and usually a smaller price tag) and then just expand the memory as needed with a card.
3. File System
Did you know that Androids have an actual file system? When you plug your phone into a Windows PC, you can easily drag and drop files into folders, as if the device were just another storage drive. This means that your media like photos, videos, and documents are easy to carry over and store on your computer. You won’t have to subscribe to a cloud service if you have a huge library of photos and videos! iPhones obscure the file system from the user for everything except photos, which can be very annoying when dealing with other forms of media such as music and documents.
We do have to say that Android takes the win for innovation, new features typically arrive on Android phones first. Although Apple has had some amazing innovations themselves, they are just one company while multiple different companies build and work on Android phones.
Because so many companies are building Android phones it’s not a surprise that Android partners tend to beat Apple to the market with innovations in the smartphone industry. Wireless charging, fast charging, NFC, 4G LTE, 5G, OLED displays, in-screen fingerprint sensors, water resistance and multi-lens cameras all landed on Android devices before iPhones, as well as software breakthroughs like true multitasking, copy and paste and multi-window support. If you’re looking for the newest, biggest, and brightest - it’s definitely Android first.
5. Battery Life
Battery life is one of the biggest complaints from smartphone owners. We all want our phone’s battery to last as long as possible and at least for an entire day. This category is a little bit close and it’s difficult to compare Apple and Android when it comes to battery life because there’s no common hardware. Apple and it’s iOS is created to squeeze the most out of the battery while you can buy an Android with a bigger battery that will outlast the iPhone.
Apple and Android let you see your battery usage broken down by app, but only Android will show you an estimate of how much battery life you have left. They both offer power saving modes that can extend your battery life by limiting performance, connectivity, and other power-sapping features, but exactly how it works is more customizable on Android.
So, although this one is a close call we will give the battery life to Android.
Clearly, it’s a hard decision to make. You won’t go wrong either way, they both have pros and cons, it all just depends on what you’re looking for in a smartphone!
If you go with an iPhone you’ll most likely have a simpler, more convenient experience. There’s not much to worry about because the iPhone is the most popular brand of smartphone, there will be help whenever you need it.
Owning an Android is a bit harder in that area, but it’s a lot more freedom because it offers more choice! You can choose how much you want to spend, your hardware and software features, and choose how you organize and personalize your smartphone experience. If you are picky about the tech that you use, you might find Android more liberating and fun - although you might miss the lack of high-quality apps and accessories that Apple provides.
If you’ve come to a decision about which operating system you think you’d prefer, now it’s time to choose a phone! And you’re in luck, we’ve got you covered. We’ve got plenty of Android phone’s and Apple iPhone’s for you to choose from so that you can find the best fit for you. Whichever device you choose, make sure it fits with your operating system preferences. Have any more questions? We’d be happy to help, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be happy to answer any further questions.