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Thread: Why my next phone will be an iPhone after 11 years on Android. A PSA

  1. #1
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 55,561

    Why my next phone will be an iPhone after 11 years on Android. A PSA

    Why my next phone will be an iPhone after 11 years on Android





    matthewlswanson

    macrumors newbie

    Original poster


    I got my first smart phone my senior year of high school back in 2009. It was some cheapo Virgin Mobile hunk of junk with a slide out keyboard. And I absolutely loved it. I loved the variety of apps. I loved that it was open-source. I loved the interface and customizations. But most of all, I loved that it wasnít an iPhone.

    After only a few years since its release, the iPhone was already a sign of snobbery and pretentiousness. Everyone that could afford one of these(in the middle of the housing crisis) seemed to constantly flaunt their overly-expensive devices. I was on the other end. I had a 512MB mp3 player and later a Zune instead of an iPod and an iPod touch. So when I got my hands on my first Android, I instantly felt like I belonged.

    Throughout the years, Android(and Android devices) kept getting better and better, and there were so many options! Want a keyboard that pulls out? Here you go! Want 10 extra batteries and a phone thatís half the price of an iPhone? No problem! This was definitely the sweet spot in Android history. I had many different phones on each subsequent OS version, and had lots of fun bricking and un-bricking them with custom ROMs and recoveries.

    My favorite phone by far was my LG V20. In my opinion this was the last great Android. It had everything: a fingerprint sensor on the back(not under the friggin screen that never works SAMSUNG!), a removable battery so I could have 10,000Mah in my pocket, headphone jack with a quad DAC, SD card slot, infrared blaster(this was fun in doctor offices), and much more. Sure it was missing some desirable LTE bands and the screen was meh, but this phone really was all I had ever wanted. It was a very sad day when it had to be retired and I upgraded to what I am using now, a Samsung Galaxy S10+. All in all, itís a pretty good phone. Great storage and RAM, fast, awesome camera, headphone jack and SD card slot. The only thing I really wish it had were a removable battery.

    There are so many things about iPhones I made fun of back then(and often still can).

    Storage was a big one. So many people were stuck with 16GB or 32GB of storage, and would have to delete their entire photo album just to install a security update. Apple is finally increasing the amount of storage you can upgrade to, but it is absurdly expensive. To this day, tons of friends of mine are still walking around with 32 or 64GB and deleting photos(which are memories) because they are out of space. And here I am laughing in 1TB(plus a 512 SD card). This is really my biggest requirement in a modern phone. Sure I donít use all of it, but I have all my photos going back to my first phone, shows and movies for offline viewing, my full music library, and countless files that have built up over the years.

    Another was the lightning port. Talk about slow data transfer rates. Devices have been taking advantage of USB-C for years now and Apple is STILL making phones with lightning. Besides being very slow, itís also not very expandable. With my S10+, I can use an adapter to connect monitors, many USB devices, a standard SD card, an ethernet port. a headset, AND charge my phone at the same time. Not to mention it actually scales to a monitor unlike an iPhone.

    The most notable, of course, was the headphone jack. I relished the endless ridicule I could unleash upon relatives and friends when they could not plug in to cars, audio equipment, or even just normal speakers without carrying around a stupid adapter. And even then, they could not charge their phone and plug in audio at the same time. We all remember Samsungís brutal commercial mocking Appleís decision to remove the port.

    But in the last few years some things have changed. Suddenly, other phone manufacturers began following Appleís mistakes.

    The first thing to go was the removable battery. I guess I can understand some rationales for this decision. Water resistance, thinness, blah blah blah. Personally I couldnít care less. Iíve never had any encounter with my phone and water. This is a device that I carry with me every day and is not cheap, so I am going to always be careful with it. But there are a plethora of ways to make it water resistant or even proof without needing to take away removable batteries. And as far as thinness, I will take the thickest phone/tablet/laptop any day. Bigger means you can fit more inside(including cooling).

    Another quite disappointing trend is the ditching of the SD card slot. Want to double the amount of storage on your phone? Well youíre now out of luck as only a few very lame budget phones still have one. This would be fine if new phones had massive amounts of storage, but looking at the newest Pixels, OnePlus, Samsungs, etc, itís extremely hard to even find 512GB, let alone 1TB like in my S10+. Like Apple, storage just doesnít seem to be a priority anymore. To me this makes no sense, as we go to 2K, 4K, and even 8K, files just keep getting bigger. With these new phones, I would massively have to cut down on the amount of several hundred gigabyte movies I could store on my phone, the humanity!

    Probably the saddest was the headphone jack. Each year that goes by I see more and more phones dropping this essential plug. I had been hard-pressed to actually find a phone that had one, which was why I chose the S10+. But alas, the S20 did away with it. I canít say Iím surprised, just very disappointed. Samsung even quietly removed their ad mocking Apple which, in all honesty, was shameful and a middle finger to Android users everywhere. As Obi-Wan would say, they have become the very thing they swore to destroy.

    If it were just hardware things like those, I might have still been convinced to stick with Android. I am very comfortable with them and know how to use them very well. But of course there are some very important, and arguably more important, issues to take into account apart from the physical parts.

    The first and foremost are security and privacy. Itís true, Android has made some improvements over the years. But Apple is making these a priority. When I am doing banking, signing important documents, or just talking with a friend, I want to be protected. I never really got a great feeling of protection with any Android Iíve used. Sure there are lots of updates to apps and the occasional security patch to the OS, but thereís always a sense that what you are doing isnít quite secure. App permissions still arenít very transparent and itís often difficult and frustrating trying to revoke permissions of apps that arenít actually needed. Apple is definitely going in the right direction locking down their OS more and really puts emphasis on protecting their end users, while Google and manufacturers exploit and track them.

    Next in line are bloatware and carrier versions of phones. These have been a massive blight to Android since the earliest days. Almost every phone besides the Pixel(which has pretty trash hardware) comes absolutely loaded with garbage apps that never get used but canít be removed and run in the background. This is akin to Microsoft loading Candy Crush on your new laptop. At least Microsoft lets you remove it. With Android you are lucky if you can even disable the app, many of them do not let you do even that. This is a massive abuse and always drove me crazy but I overlooked it because I liked the hardware. Then there are the absurd carrier-branded versions of each phone. With 20 different versions of each model, no wonder manufacturers and carriers canít support them! Not to mention even more carrier-related bloatware that comes shipped. Apple ditched this years ago and I commend them for that. The pinnacle of my frustration with this came when I tried to use T-Mobile on a phone that was branded AT&T. It technically had all the LTE bands required but when the T-Mobile SIM was inserted, some of the bands were locked down. Apple includes all the bands and lets you use all of them when the phone is paid off, this is how it should have always been.

    The last non-hardware point is related to updates and longevity. As hinted a few times in previous paragraphs, Android manufacturers(and even Google themselves) have not prioritized supporting their phones with OS updates and upgrades AT ALL. You are lucky if you get 3 years of updates if any. Again, Iím sure this goes back to the pure amount of phones and versions that are made, but to me that is no excuse. I can maybe understand this on a cheap $300 phone like in the early days of Android, but on a flagship that is even more expensive than an iPhone, this is(and should be) a massive deal breaker for many, including myself. If Iím going to buy a phone that costs more than most laptops, I want it to last a very long time and have faith that there will be consistent updates and upgrades.

    All the different hardware distinctions that made Androids cool and desirable to me were all slowly phased out as manufacturers tried harder and harder to follow in Appleís footsteps. I want to stay on Android, I really really do. If they were a lot more secure and supported I could easily justify staying. If they brought back more storage, ports, and things that used to make them great, I could easily get past their other flaws. Iím no Apple fanboy as anyone that knows me will attest. I have put this off as long as I possibly could. But as Androids have now ditched literally everything that I care about in a phone, there is no reason for me to stay with them when I can get the same level of hardware(which is much too low in my opinion) but gain security and peace of mind. Iím sad to go, but Samsung and all the others have done this to themselves by their own negligence and extremely poor design decisions. And this is why my next phone will be an iPhone













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  2. #2
    andynap is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Oct 2002 Philadelphia Posts: 45,180

    Re: Why my next phone will be an iPhone after 11 years on Android. A PSA

    Who cares? I just got a new S21 5G.


    Andy

  3. #3
    Bart -my real name- is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Nov 2009 Alexandria, VA Posts: 5,439

    Re: Why my next phone will be an iPhone after 11 years on Android. A PSA

    Quote Originally Posted by andynap View Post
    Who cares?

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