iPhone vs Android: it’s one of the most heated debates in the cell phone world. There are a lot of factors to consider when trying to decide which is better for you. In this article, we’ve outlined some of the most important points to help you decide if you should get an iPhone or an Android in September 2021!
Why iPhones Are Better Than Androids
More User Friendly
According to Kaley Rudolph, writer and research for freeadvice.com, “Apple has nearly perfected the user interface, and for anyone looking to purchase a phone that is user friendly, accessible, and reliable–there’s no competition.”
Indeed, iPhones have a very friendly user interface. According to Ben Taylor, founder of HomeWorkingClub.com, “Android phones run lots of different operating system versions, all tweaked and skinned by the various phone manufacturers.” In contrast, iPhones are created from top to bottom by Apple so that the user experience can be much more consistent.
When comparing iPhones vs Android phones about the user experience, iPhones generally are better.
One big edge in the iPhone vs Android arena is security. Karan Singh from TechInfoGeek writes, “iTunes app store is heavily monitored by Apple. Each app is checked for the presence of malicious code and is released after thorough testing.” This vetting process means that your phone is much more secure against malicious apps because it simply is not allowed to install apps that can harm your device.
In contrast, Android devices allow you to install apps from third party sources. If you aren’t careful, this can lead to a security risk for your device.
Better Augmented Reality
Apple has led the way on bringing Augmented Reality (AR) to smartphones. Morten Haulik, the Head of Content at Evrest, says Apple has a “far superior” ARKit and is in a good position to “dominate the upcoming AR revolution.”
Haulik added that Apple may be incorporating their new LiDAR Scanner into the next line of iPhones, which are set to be released in September 2020. The LiDAR scanner helps a camera determine range and depth, which will help AR developers.
When it comes to iPhone vs Android in the AR arena, iPhones are ahead.
According to Karan Singh from TechInfoGeek, “The use of Swift language, NVMe storage, large processor cache, high single-core performance, and OS optimization ensures that iPhones remain lag-free.” While more recently iPhones and Android devices can seem tied in the race for better performance, iPhones tend to have more consistent and efficient performance. This optimization means that iPhones can get better battery life than Android phones when running the same tasks.
This optimization and efficiency is all due to the fact that iPhones are crafted under one roof. Apple can control all aspects of the phone and its components, where Android developers have to collaborate with many different other companies.
When it comes to unity of hardware and software in the iPhone vs Android debate, iPhone definitely wins out.
More Frequent Updates
When it comes to update frequency in the iPhone vs Android duel, Apple comes out ahead. iOS updates are regularly released to patch bugs and introduce new features. Every iPhone user has access to that update as soon as its released.
This isn’t the case for Android phones. Reuben Yonatan, the Founder and CEO of GetVoIP, pointed out that it can take more than a year for some Android phones to get a new update. For example, Opposed, Lenovo, Tecno, Alcatel, Vivo, and LG didn’t have Android 9 Pie at the end of 2019, even though it had been released more than a year earlier.
Native Features (e.g. iMessage & FaceTime)
iPhones have better features that are native to all Apple products, including iMessage and FaceTime. iMessage is Apple’s instant messaging service. You can send texts, gifs, reactions, and much more.
Kalev Rudolph, a writer and researcher for FreeAdvice, says iMessage has more “streamlined and instantaneous” group messaging than anything offered by Android phones.
FaceTime is Apple’s video calling platform. This app comes pre-installed on your iPhone and you can use it to video chat with anyone who has an Apple ID, even if they’re on a Mac, iPad, or iPod.
On Android, you and the people you want to video chat with all need the same third-party application like Google Duo, Facebook Messenger or Discord. So, in terms of native features, the iPhone vs Android debate favors the iPhone, but those same features can be found elsewhere on Android just as easily.
Better For Gaming
Winston Nguyen, the Founder of VR Heaven, believes that iPhones are the superior gaming phone. Nguyen says that the iPhone’s lower touch latency makes for a more seamless gaming experience, even when comparing the iPhone 6s to the Samsung Galaxy S10+.
The optimization of applications for iPhones also means that the device can run games with good performance without needing as much RAM. In contrast, Android phones need a lot of RAM to run games and multitask effectively.
We’ll talk more about gaming later in this article, as the iPhone vs Android gaming debate isn’t quite as clear cut as this.
Warranty Program And Customer Service
AppleCare+ is the top-of-the-line warranty program in the mobile phone space. There’s no Android equivalent that’s nearly as comprehensive.
Rudolph noted that Android manufacturers “have built-in carefully crafted clauses to void replacement responsibility.” On the other hand, Apple has two programs which can include coverage for theft, loss, and two incidents of accidental damage.
It’s important to keep in mind that repairing your iPhone with a non-Apple part will void your AppleCare+ warranty. An Apple tech won’t touch your iPhone if they see that you’ve tried to fix it on your own or brought it to a third-party repair shop.
While Android manufacturers may have their own warranty programs, warranty services in the iPhone vs Android arena definitely fall in favor of Apple.
Why Android Are Better Than iPhones
Do you find that you often run out of storage space on your phone? If so, you may want to switch to Android! Many Android phones support expandable storage, meaning you can use an SD card to get more storage space and save more files, apps, and more.
According to Stacy Caprio from DealsScoop, “Androids allow you to take out the memory card and put in one with a higher memory capacity while iPhones do not.” When she needed more storage on her Android device, she “was able to purchase a new memory card to increase the storage capacity for much less money” than buying a new phone.
If you run out of storage on the iPhone, you really only have to options: upgrade to a new model with more storage space or pay for additional iCloud storage space. When it comes to storage space in the iPhone vs Android debate, Android comes out first.
Extra iCloud storage space really isn’t that expensive. In some cases, it’s actually cheaper than purchasing a separate SD card. You can get 200 GB of additional iCloud storage for just $2.99 / month. A 256 GB Samsung SD card can cost as much as $49.99.
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Apple’s decision to remove the headphone jack from the iPhone 7 was controversial at the time. These days, Bluetooth headphones are more affordable and easier to use than before. There isn’t as much need for a built-in headphone jack anymore.
However, Apple did create a problem when it removed the headphone jack. iPhone users can no longer charge their iPhone with a Lightning cable and use wired headphones simultaneously.
Not everyone wants or needs the wire-free cell phone experience. You might not always remember to charge your Bluetooth headphones or wireless charging pad. When it comes to including older features like this in the iPhone vs Android competition, Android wins.
If you want a newer cell phone with a headphone jack, an Android is the way to go — for now. Unfortunately for fans of the headphone jack, Android manufacturers are starting to remove it too. The Google Pixel 4, Samsung S20, and OnePlus 7T don’t have a headphone jack.
More Phone Options
Smartphone buyers may only need a specific set of features. The large number of manufacturers creating Android phones means that there is something for everyone. From power users to those on a strict budget, the Android lineup is diverse and can fit the needs of almost anyone.
According to Richard Gamin from pcmecca.com, if you’re getting an Android phone, “You can work around your budget a lot better and in most cases, get a decent smartphone for a good price.” Android’s selection of budget and mid-range smartphones gives the phones an edge over Apple’s expensive iPhones.
When comparing iPhones vs Androids, most midrange Android phones often have more features than flagship iPhones. Many midrange Android phones have headphone jacks, expandable storage, and sometimes even unique hardware like pop-up cameras. Best of all, these mid-range Android phones offer relatively good performance.
In short, cheaper Android phones are getting better and better, and you may not have to spend a thousand dollars on an iPhone when you can get a $400 Android that can do everything an iPhone can and more.
Unrestricted Operating System
When it comes to OS accessibility in the iPhone vs Android arena, the Android operating system turns out to be less restricted than iOS. You don’t have to jailbreak an Android to change things like the default messaging app and launcher.
Although it creates more risks, some people prefer Android’s less restricted operating system. According to Saqib Ahmed Khan, the digital marketing executive for PureVPN, “Android is open source, but Play Store is managed by Google, and they have not imposed so much restrictions like Apple’s App Store therefore you will find more applications on play store then Apple’s App Store.” This lack of restriction does create risk, but an understanding of best practices of how to keep your phone secure can help to navigate this app landscape.
According to Ahn Trihn, the managing editor of GeekWithLaptop, “iPhones are very proprietary and they are very inclusive about their software and applications. This means the programs you can download on iPhones are very limited. Android, on the other hand, is the exact opposite.” Without these limitations, Android phones are much better at supporting apps with software features.
Trihn writes that “Android offers you the freedom to do whatever you want on your phone. You can download apps that will change the layout and interface of your phone, games not on the play store, and even apps made by rookie programmers. The possibilities are endless.” This freedom of customization can allow you to make your Android phone as personalized as you’d like.
More Customization & Personalization
This is an area where Apple has caught up to Android in recent years. You can now customize your iPhone Control Center, widget menu, wallpaper, and much more.
However, Android has been in the customization game for far longer, so there are way more options. Paul Vignes, the communication and marketing specialist at Trendhim writes “Androids are much more flexible when it comes to customization of icons, widgets, layout etc. and all these without having to jailbreak or even root the device.” This puts Android phones at a massive advantage against iPhones when it comes to user personalization.
There are countless apps on the Google Play Store for helping customize your home screen, background, ringtones, widgets, and more. These apps can even help you connect your devices together, such as Microsoft Launcher, which helps sync activities between your Android phone and your Windows PC.
Apple products and accessories need to be MFi-certified to work properly (or at all) with iOS devices. This means that the device will work with Apple’s proprietary lightning cable. That’s not the case with Androids, as they don’t use Apple’s lightning connector.
Ahn Trihn from GeekWithLaptop writes that “Android hardware can be found everywhere, you can buy chargers, earphones, modular screens, controllers, keyboards, batteries, and so much more with Android.” You can pay for the features and hardware you want rather than pay a high price for something you don’t need. With iPhones, you may feel forced into buying more expensive accessories like AirPods that do the same things as their cheaper, Android compatible counterparts.
Aside from accessories, Android phones also tend to have more internal hardware. The only folding phones and dual screen phones on the market currently are Android phones like the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. Some mid range Android phones have pop up cameras, and there are even Android phones with built-in projectors.
This hardware is also usually more advanced. According to Mathew Rogers, senior editor at Mango Matter, “Fast charging, wireless charger, IP-water resistance rating, 120hz screens, and longer lasting high capacity batteries have historically been far more advanced on Android devices than Apple iPhones.”
While newer iPhones have switched to USB-C charging, Android devices have been using USB-C for much longer. According to Richard Gamin, from PCMecca.com, “all the newer [Android] models have USB-C, which not only charges your phone faster, but it also means that you don’t need a designated Lightning cable. You can use any USB-C device for charging.” Since many Android phones use the exact same charger despite having different manufacturers, you won’t have as much of a problem borrowing a cable from a friend if you forgot yours at home.
USB-C charging is faster and more efficient than the lightning connector. Since the cable isn’t a proprietary charger from Apple, USB-C accessories are generally less expensive as they don’t have to pay for MFI certification.
USB-C cables are also easier to use with adapters. With a USB-C to HDMI cable, newer Samsung phones can be used on desktop monitors. This converts the screen into a desktop UI experience called Samsung DeX, a feature completely missing from Apple’s iPhone lineup.
More RAM and Processing Power
iPhones generally do not have as much RAM as Android phones due to their app/system optimization. However, having more RAM and computing power is certainly helpful for the Android experience. According to Brandon Wilkes, digital marketing manager at the Big Phone Store, “Year after year Android release phones that have better processors and more RAM. This essentially means that whenever you’re buying an Android phone, you’re buying a phone that is capable of running much faster and much smoother. You’re also paying a fraction of the price too!”
With more RAM and processing power, Android phones can multitask just as well if not better than iPhones. While the app/system optimization may not be as good as Apple’s closed source system, the higher computing power makes Android phones much more capable machines for a greater number of tasks.
Arguably, this difference in performance could be said to make Android phones better for gaming. However, this may depend on each device. Some Android phones are built specifically for gaming, coming with internal hardware like cooling fans to improve a user’s experience when gaming.
Easier File Transferring
One of Android’s strong points is is file management. iPhones are focused on a fluid user interface, however they are lacking in file management and storage.
According to Elliott Reimers, certified nutrition coach at Rave Reviews, “androids have a much more comprehensive filing system that allows you to find store and move files easily. This is perfect for a professional who doesn’t want to accidently share a picture from last weekend with the boss, or just somebody who appreciates a good bit of organization in their life.” When it comes to organizing, moving, and dealing with files, Android is most similar to Microsoft Windows.
Android phones are also much better at transferring files from one device to another. Combined with its file management system, Android devices can connect with Windows PCs with ease to share files using apps like OneDrive and Your Phone for Windows. This makes Android phones great for professionally maintaining file storage.
Freedom From Apple Ecosystem
Another major point for Android devices is that they don’t rely on Apple’s device and software ecosystem. Users can mix and match hardware accessories and software to their liking. Rogers writes, “The only reason why people stay with an iPhone is because they are locked into the FaceTime and AirDrop ecosystem.”
With that freedom, you often pay less. Being forced into Apple’s ecosystem means that they can charge a premium for their devices, as their competition isn’t as much as an issue.
Android smartphones tend to depreciate in price faster than iPhones. Rogers writes, “if you don’t need the latest device, you can score a brand new ex-flagship smartphone at a bargain price.” Being patient and waiting for the price of the latest flagship smartphone’s price to drop can allow you get a very feature-rich phone for a fraction of its initial cost.
iPhones vs Androids, Our Thoughts
There are a lot of great arguments on both sides of the iPhone vs Android debate. In recent years, the the top Android manufacturers are neck and neck with Apple in the race for the best device. The best iPhone out there right now, the iPhone 11, is certainly comparable to some of the best Android phones like the Samsung Galaxy S20.
Since neither are that much better than the other objectively speaking, we believe that the choice comes down to your preference. Which one has features that suit you better, and which one do you like more? It’s all up to you.
Now that you’re an expert on iPhones vs Androids, which one will you choose, and which one is the best? Make sure to share this article on social media to see what your friends, family, and followers think about the iPhone vs. Android debate. Let us know which you prefer in the comments section below.