Many of you that are reading this have been following me for quite some time I’d guess. And for those of you that have you will know that I’ve been an Android user since early 2011. In fact, it’s all I’ve used over the last 4 years and it was the backbone of the original site I had, called AndroidDissected. During that time, I’ve done my fair share of bashing iOS/iPhone users simply because I didn’t know what they working with from a personal stand point. So after a few years of bashing them, then really opening my mind to all things tech related, I decided I wanted an iPhone, in which I decided to just add another line to the Verizon Wireless account and grab myself an iPhone 6. The story starts here and I’m going to give you my first impressions after 2 1/2 weeks of use and playing around in the iOS ecosystem.
Unboxing The Device
I was actually pretty excited when the device arrived here on a Friday afternoon. I was ready to get home a long day at work and see what the iPhone 6 was all about. Upon walking in the door at home, I quickly sat down at my computer desk, where my shiny new iPhone 6 was waiting for me and proceeded to open the box.
Once I got past all the packaging, which wasn’t really all that much, and got to the phone and picked it up for the very first time, I was instantly pleased with what I held in my hand. A device that’s unlike the past iPhone’s from what I’ve seen and what few seconds I’ve had them in my hand. A device that is considerably thinner than previous iPhone versions, and remarkably it’s thinner than my Motorola Moto X 2014, which is my current daily driver.
Setting Things Up And Daily Use
I have contemplated getting myself an iPhone for several months now. I’ve done a bit of research over the years, and more so over the past few months, as well as speaking with my fellow writer, Andrew Myrick, as he’s been using iOS products for years and years now. Just looking at things I can do with a stock iPhone compared to a stock Android device, what customization can be done, how it’s done and various things like that. So I knew going in that things would be quite a bit different, and that there would be some bumps in the road as far as accomplishing things I wanted, or was trying to, accomplish.
Coming from 4 years of Android, I actually found that the setup process for the iPhone was quite simple. It walked me through everything, even setting up my credit card for use in the App Store, WiFi and many other things.
Top: Taken With The iPhone 6, Bottom: Taken With The Moto X 2014
Some things that weren’t quite as simple was more along the lines of customization stuff that I can easily do on my Android device. Such as custom ring tones for when various different people text me or even call me. I like to easily distinguish by a certain sound who is trying to contact me. I have certain songs set as ring tones for when my girlfriend, work, my son and my dad call. Plus I also like to have certain tones for when each of those text me, as having a certain song play for a text message isn’t ideal, so something shorter is better.
That all being said, it appears that the easiest way to accomplish these things I mentioned above with ring tones on an iOS device is to use iTunes and purchase ring tones, or set them manually. Not as easy as just a couple of clicks on my Android device within either the Contacts app or something like GO SMS for text messaging. It’s just one of those little things that annoy me.
Another thing that really bothers me, or shall we say it really bothers my OCD, is the fact that you can’t easily hide or get rid of unwanted icons. The iPhone comes with quite a few apps that I have absolutely no interest in at all, and therefore I don’t want to see their icons on my homescreen(s). And that last word, homescreens, with an S, is just not something I like to have either.
On my Android device, I have one homescreen, with the apps I use regularly in the dock and within folders on the dock. On iOS, for me to hide those unwanted icons, it seems I have to create a folder on a second homescreen, promptly called TRASH, and put those icons that I have no use for there and move that folder over to that second homescreen, since I know I’ll never see it unless I need to move something new to that folder. Again, slightly annoying, and not the way it’s done in Android, but it’s doable and it works.
The Things I Really Like About iOS
There are a few things that I really like about iOS that I don’t currently have with my Android device. The first being TouchID and how it’s incorporated into iOS and when/how you use it. For example, I created my App Store/AppleID and of course setup a password and all of that. Then I went in and setup TouchID, had it scan a few of my fingers and my thumb.
Now that TouchID is setup, when I go to unlock my phone, I can either enter a pin number, a pattern or whatever, or I can simply place one of my fingers or my thumb on the home button and the device will unlock when it recognizes that the finger/thumb belongs to me. Takes less than 2 seconds, if even that long.
Then there’s any time I go to install an app from the App Store. Regardless if it’s an app that’s totally free or one that has to be purchased. Once I hit the Get, then Install button, after about 3 – 4 seconds, the pop-up window will come up asking me to enter my App Store password, or to verify with TouchID. Again, in less than 1 – 2 seconds, the purchase is confirmed and my app begins installing as it verifies my identity via my finger or thumb. This is definitely something I wish I had on my Android device, especially when I’m around my girlfriends niece’s and nephew’s or any little kids like that.
The second thing I really like about the iPhone is the camera. I’ve heard for years and years, that nothing beats the camera of an iPhone, and for all those years and years I didn’t believe it. Maybe because I’m not a graphics expert, so the same pictures from multiple devices can often look the same to me. But it’s not just about quality here with the iPhone camera I’ve come to find out.
One of the biggest annoyances of an Android camera is getting them to focus and to stay focused. It can be a serious struggle at times, but that doesn’t appear to be the case with the iPhone. You simply aim and click to take the picture, and once the picture has been taken, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you’re going to see the results as being clear and crisp and in-focus.
Another great thing about the camera is how quick it is. Especially when it comes to HDR mode as compared to HDR mode on my Moto X 2014. Where as the Moto X takes about 5 seconds from the moment you click the button to take the picture, to focus, then finish the HDR process, the iPhone does it almost instantly. There’s no waiting at all. No having to hold the device still for several seconds until it’s finished doing whatever it needs to do.
Then throw in the fact that low-light situations are extremely good as well. The iPhone is really good at picking up a subject matter in low-light and making it stand out as good as possible unlike most Android devices. Yes, there are some Android devices that excel at this, but the ones I’ve had in the past haven’t, and that’s what I’m personally going by.
Things I Don’t Like About iOS
I’m going to be totally honest here and I know many of you might think this was written by me personally, but I can tell it was. There’s really not much that I don’t like about my iPhone at this time. Sure, there are a few annoyances as I mentioned above but those are really small.
If I absolutely had to pick something to “complain” about, that would be the keyboard. Coming from Android where I’ve been swipe texting for years, touch typing is difficult, if not impossible at times it feels like. It’s definitely very slow and awkward for me, but I’m sure after doing it for a while, I’d get used to it again. However, that’s not something I prefer.
Now, I have of course installed both Swype and SwiftKey as I used Swype for about 3 years on Android, and for the last year I’ve been using SwiftKey. I can say that since SwiftKey is my go-to keyboard of choice, it’s a bit different on iOS. Not sure if that’s because it’s relatively new to iOS or because of limitations that Apple may put on how things can be done specifically within an app or whatever.
But the thing that annoys me is the lack of having a dedicated number row across the top of my on-screen keyboard. I’ve gotten spoiled in being able to just single tap those digits when I’m texting. Or as on my Android device, I’ve got my most often used numbers programmed into the dictionary of SwiftKey to make things even easier, or lazy, whichever you prefer to call it.
One other thing that I guess I’d have to choose to complain about if I was forced to do so is the speaker volume on the iPhone. Again, I’m spoiled by my Moto X 2014 with the front speakers and I’m sure those devices that have that front speaker Boom Sound would spoil me even more. But luckily I don’t have any of those devices, so I’m only comparing this to my Moto X 2014.
The iPhone speaker just isn’t good at all. In fact, to put it bluntly in my own words, it down right sucks! I’m one that goes into work at 3 – 4am most mornings, and we don’t open our doors to customers until 6am. During that time we’re stocking, cooking or whatever, and I like to listen to my iHeartRadio app, streaming some really good tunes. The Moto X does this well, as does the iPhone, but the Moto X sound from the speakers simply blows the iPhone out of the water.
I turn both devices all the way up and without having any kind of equalizer app or anything on either device, the iPhone just can’t hang. I don’t know why to be honest. I’m not sure if it’s the actual speaker hardware that’s used, or if it’s because the speaker placement can make a big difference in sound quality. Whatever it is, Apple really needs to do something about it on the next version of the iPhone, as I’d love to see some front facing speakers that output much louder sound than their current speakers.
My Final Thoughts
After several months, maybe even a year or so, of pondering and talking about getting an iPhone just to play around with it and to see just what their entire ecosystem is all about, how it feels to hold one, use one and everything else, I can honestly say I’m very happy that I have finally done it.
It cost me nothing up front, and less than $45 a month to get one, and for a device that costs $749 and up, that’s not a bad deal. While I’m not using it every single day as my “daily driver”, I do use it often and I use it for a lot of various things. More so than I ever imagined myself doing so, and especially this early on after actually having the device in my possession.
Of course all of the above is merely my own personal opinion. Am I saying that if you’re an Android user that you should switch to iOS? Absolutely no I’m not. And I’m also not saying that if you were to give iOS a try, that you’d have the same experiences that I have, because we all use our devices slightly different from the next person. In fact, you might not enjoy half as much as I do or you might absolutely hate it. But what I can say is, if you’ve never tried iOS, or it’s been a lot of years since you last tried it, be open-minded and give it a try again and see what it’s all about now days.
Look for more iOS stuff from me in the very near future. As I begin to use apps that I’ve not used before that maybe I had no use for on Android, or that weren’t even made for Android, or find new games or whatever, I’ll be writing about them. As well as any other neat tips and tricks that you can do with your iPhone or within iOS itself.
If you have any ideas or suggestions of things you’d like to see iOS/iPhone/Apple related from us here at TechDissected, please don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below and we’ll be sure to try our best to get it done and bring it to on the site or on our social network channels.