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Should I dump my iPhone for an Android?

marsee's Photo
Posted Nov 08 2009 02:13 PM
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All the new Android phones and devices coming onto the market such as Droid and Nook are making me seriously consider upgrading my first generation iPhone. I don't want purchase a new mobile device until the right one comes along. Any advice, experience, or reasons for making the switch or not?
Marsee Henon
User Group Manager
O'Reilly Media
Sebastopol, CA

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22 Replies

+ 5
  blackbear's Photo
Posted Nov 09 2009 04:07 AM

The first part of the answer to your question is financial. Have you reached the end of your current AT&T contract? Since you said first gen iPhone, we'll assume so, otherwise you're looking at painful early termination fees, since you'll need to leave AT&T and join the greater Verizon Borg Collective to get the droid. We'll also assume that number portability is going to work ok for you.

If things will work financially, the questions becomes: droid or 3GS, a debate that's raging fierce and hot right now. The droid is the new kid on the block, with many differences from the iPhone (simultaneous apps, better camera, etc.) What it doesn't have right now is 85,000 applications. This is likely to change quickly, as developers come onboard the droid bandwagon every day, and now that Verizon is making a serious push with it, that should accelerate.

In the end, you'll have to try the droid (and the 3GS to be fair), and decide if the new features the droid offers are worth waiting a while for apps.
James Turner

Contributing Editor, O'Reilly Media
Correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor
+ 5
  MikeH's Photo
Posted Nov 09 2009 10:07 AM

I think there are more and more reasons to move from an iPhone to an Android-powered device.

1. Android is open, and so is its marketplace. Enough said. If the App store has 100,000 apps, how many do you really expect you'll need or use for more than 3-days? At 11k apps and growing, I hope the Android Marketplace does not get too big and become bloated like the App store. The app store reminds me of one of Apple's TV ads but the roles are reversed.

2. There are new devices appearing and each offer different features that make them more tailorable to your liking. Whether you are a mad-texter, or a web browser, or want to check twitter and get a few emails, there is a Android-powered phone just right for you. It is not one-size fits all, er one phone.

HTC GI
HTC MyTouch
Samsung Behold II
Motorola Motoblur
HTC Droid Eris
Motorola Droid
HTC Hero

I have tested all these phones and they each have their unique strengths.

3. Multitasking. There are many apps, not an app for that. Why not run more than one app at a time. Run an FTP app that transfers a file to where you need it, while you are reading email or browsing the web...

4. 3G Coverage if you choose Verizon Wireless or live in the middle of the country.

Posted Image

+ 1
  dkavanagh's Photo
Posted Nov 09 2009 10:12 AM

I'm happy with my android phone. I have the Google Ion/ HTC Magic / t-Mobile MyTouch G3
If it were me, I might wait for one with a little faster processor (like the 1GHz Snapdragon devices).
Battery life is OK, normally lasts the day just fine. Heavy usage causes it to run out early sometimes.
It has some pretty cool apps, so I'm not missing much that I can tell vs the iPhone.

David
0
  GTGeek88's Photo
Posted Nov 09 2009 11:37 AM

No, check out the Time review:

http://nerdworld.blo...reless/?cnn=yes

It says the camera is crappy, the keyboard is less than stellar, there's no way to sync your music files, it has on 256 MB of onboard storage, the browser does not support multitouch (meaning there's no way to zoom a web page with pinch movements), it has an "industrial" look and feel, and the buttons are awkwardly placed. The Android phones are worth watching, but they aren't a iPhone replacement. Maybe later. Presently, I'm hoping for the iPhone on Verizon. Bottom line: If you get rid of your iPhone, you'll quickly regret the decision.
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  DouglasW's Photo
Posted Nov 09 2009 07:33 PM

There are some things Android does better than iPhone,including multitasting,open platform,stability,as well as its camera.On the contrary,the only thing iPhone impressed me is its touch screen.The experience with iPhone's touch screen is fantastic.

So,if you are a life hacker you should definitly choose Android phone.You would get unlimited possiblity.
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  ianclimb8's Photo
Posted Nov 10 2009 07:55 AM

Probably not just yet give the device time to mature ... like the iPhone has.. if you like I do use a mac as a main computer you'll find the iPhone a great asset.

Now that the 3Gs has been released there are plenty of folks getting out of contracts and there are some good deals on nearly new 3G phones ...


I love my iPhone its like my laptop and desk top of choice ... they all link together and work really well thats why I will be with the iPhone and the touch screens super, way better than any number dialing touch buttons especically for text messages .. its a god send ...

As for camera I have an SLR and Canon G9 for photos...
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  brianiac's Photo
Posted Nov 10 2009 08:01 AM

I'm pretty excited about an AMOLED screen, my browser of choice, microSD card support, MP3/WAV ringtones, Flash, a file manager, apps that aren't arbitrarily yanked or restricted, using a development platform of my own choosing, &c.
 : Nov 10 2009 08:11 AM
Not that I'm suggesting it as a reason to not go with an Android phone, but MikeH's answer got me to look up T-Mobile's data coverage map for reference (since Android versus iPhone isn't as simple as Verizon versus AT&T), which isn't as impressive as Verizon's 3G network.

I've never owned an iPhone myself, so I can't speak to the differences or suggest one over the other, but I can say that I've loved my G1 and can't imagine anything it might be missing (aside from getting the Android 2.0 upgrade, which will enable my one true dream app: turn-by-turn directions with Google Navigation).
+ 1
  MKulpa@ENTS's Photo
Posted Nov 10 2009 04:37 PM

Why not consider your alternatives?

The Android community is already quite strong but that's not to say that it's the only other option.

I personally think three other contenders could easily be Maemo and WebOS and BBOS.

I really like the style of the Pixi for example but I realise wifi may be a requirement. At which point you might consider the Pre (my understanding is that the cost difference in the states between a Pre and Pixi is pretty slim)

The N900 just launched this week, sure it's not actually available anywhere yet but really, take a look at the specs they're unreasonable!

Then there's the smart phone king (Newly renamed App Phone) blackberry.
Sure they can be a bit ugly but the newer models are getting to be quite sleek.

I think if your iPhone is working for you now, you really owe it to yourself to wait and see how this all plays out.

I mean who knows... maybe BADA will pan out in a big way... ... maybe.
Michael Kulpa
Edmonton New Technology Society
Michaelk@ENTS.ca
+ 1
  palmettobug's Photo
Posted Nov 11 2009 08:09 AM

I am currently considering the change myself. I have an iPhone and love it, but what I don't love is the data plan cost and the dead spots. What I am really considering is carrying two devices. I could drop the iPhone AT&T plan and just use it as an iPod Touch with the WiFi, syncing, etc... Then I could go on my wife's Verizon plan for just a cheap $10 or so add on.

Yes, I would have to carry two devices and I wouldn't have cellular data, but my monthly bill would go down by about $75 a month ($900 per year!) and I would still have wifi capabilities in my pocket.
--
Michael Carnell
Palmettobug Digital
Charleston, SC
 : Dec 02 2009 05:21 PM
The future of the smart devices. Only the truly 'smart' phones will prevail...

Enjoy this video... I did!

+ 1
  adfm's Photo
Posted Dec 11 2009 05:09 PM

I have an iPhone and an Android device. The iPhone has a really slick UI and design. I find the browser on the iPhone to be a little zippier. The battery lasts a lot longer on the iPhone, too. There are more than 100,000 apps in the App Store, but I only ever use a handful on either device. I do find having to jailbreak your iPhone for full access as well as the draconian App Store approval process to be a bore. It's a nice mobile device, though. Truly advanced technology and ahead of the pack.

I've been finding myself using the Android more. The UI is pretty decent and is constantly getting better. It tends to get all the cool features first since developers don't have to wade through the App Store quagmire to get product out the door. I like that you can run what you want and that apps can run in the background. There's a real filesystem exposed to the user. Everything is treated like a one big mashup, which makes the overall experience seem more productive.

The Android experience is far more expressive and I feel like I can get more done with it. The iPhone definitely has a smoother feel to it, though. I'd say hold tight. The Droid looks like a really nice device, but it's not going to make you want to switch if you're used to an iPhone. The next generation devices will, though. I'd wait until Q2 2010 to upgrade.
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  sboss's Photo
Posted Dec 12 2009 10:27 AM

it depends on what you want out of your phone. I own both a iPhone and a Android phone. Have service from 2 different providers. I would not give up my iPhone for anything. I like the droid series but not as much as I like the iPhone. I have jail broken/rooted both phones so I can as much flexibility as I need/want. As a user, you just need to sit down and decide what are the more important features/options of the phone and go with the one that has best fit.
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  zigurd's Photo
Posted Dec 13 2009 09:01 AM

Get a Droid and an iPod Touch.

The Droid is a wonderful phone. The screen is very high resolution - maybe the best currently available on any phone. The processor is fast. The browser is fast. Google Voice and GMail are well-integrated. Maps and Navigation is way ahead of anything else like it. So, for the kinds of tasks people use phones for, Droid is better than iPhone and better than earlier Android phones.

The iPhone/iPod Touch platform has many more games than Android currently has. The number of these devices in the field and being sold means that game developers, including major game studios and publishers are bringing top titles to this platform.

Both platforms are great for software developers. If you have a Mac, you can run the tools for developing software for both platforms.
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  Alejandro Ramirez's Photo
Posted Dec 02 2011 10:48 AM

Marsee,

I imagine that by now you may have already purchased a new phone, but if you haven't let me tell you this:

Like you, I had been an iPhone user since the first one came out (yeah, paid 700 bucks for it -ouch-), and owned a 3GS and even owned an iPhone 4S for a week. I am now a Droid Bionic user and super happy about it.

It was then that I though that the iPhone had really reached a point where it was actually having to play catch up with Android in many ways.

At some point in the past I also owned a Google G1 (T-Mobile) which was a very decent phone, but having been used to iOS I found myself missing a lot from iOS and went back eventually.

However, the current version of Android for smartphones and the new upcoming "Ice Cream Sandwich" have major usability, user-interface, and productivity improvements.

I think what I am trying to say is that now the choice is more real than ever. The two OS's (iOS/Android) are equally powerful.

My choice of going to an Android phone was also driven by 4G/LTE network speed support. The iPhone 4S was marketed as a phone that would download at 14Mbps speeds which may have been true for very limited metropolitan areas, but over here where I live I was only getting 1.8Mbps.

With my Droid I get anywhere between 12, 20 to even 30Mbps 4G speeds and 3-4Mbps speeds on 3G (Verizon vs. AT&T). Also the rather larger screen on Android phones makes it a good compromise for not having to also carry a tablet around.

Here's my blog post on the subject.

I hope this helps!

Posted Image
Alejandro Ramirez
Digital Photography Club
Administrator
0
  Chris Abbott's Photo
Posted Oct 19 2012 11:24 PM

First,I'm enjoy with my android phone.In yours,I think it depends on what you want out of your phone.you need decide what are the more important features of the phone and go with the one that has best fit.
0
  techmajesty's Photo
Posted Dec 04 2012 09:53 PM

Well, I can safely say I did the opposite. My company makes me carry an android phone. The Samsung Galaxy S it seemed like a nice thin phone. However I don't carry it anymore. Instead I forward to my iphone 4S. This phone since they day I got it will run out of juice after 4 to 5 hours of just sitting. I found that allot of the problems seemed to be related to it's mail checking and such but the settings were the same as my iphone. So I rooted the device and used some battery patches and this helped but still I can't use it for an entire day even if I have wifi and bluetooth off I even replaced the battery thinking I just got a bad one. The company quickly took the android phone of the choice list. I don't hate the phone it works nicely but not nearly as integrated as my iphone. I agree that the phones do not all get to use the apps. They had two apps go on sale I jumped on to buy them during the sale and tried to download them but of course they would not download for my phone.





Regards,
How to Unlock Blackberry Curve
0
  rajarental's Photo
Posted Sep 08 2013 09:09 AM

I would upgrade to the latest iPhone model, Apple has the best apps in the world hands down. ipad repair
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  Robertbrans's Photo
Posted Oct 24 2013 01:40 AM

Everyone has its own choices over gadgets but nowadays we all see that android beat every OS like windows and mac. And we all know that android gives better features and also provides huge amount of applications which windows and mac unable to do so. So android is the better choice nowadays.
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  CorallaC's Photo
Posted Nov 05 2013 07:20 AM

I had the same question like you some month ago. I bought a samsung s4 and I'm very happy with it. The android platform is much more open for new apps but the offer is much smaller. When u need and enjoy much apps so you are right on the iphone. But I think the price for an iphone is too high. I only need some apps and this are on both platforms.
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  Sophy12's Photo
Posted Jan 11 2014 02:34 AM

My story is bit different. I recently dumped my Galaxy S3 android for the new iPhone 5S.
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  Backlink1's Photo
Posted Mar 23 2014 09:44 AM

well keep it up.
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