Exactly one year ago today I received my brand new gold iPhone 5s in the mail. For all the dirty details as to why I switched from Android to iPhone click the link. Now that it has been 365 days I will go over some of the pros and cons. Honestly, I got pretty much what I expected which was a smartphone that did what I wanted it to do; act like a smartphone and not a computer. I know, I know, Android lovers throughout the world are going to yell and scream at me that iPhone can’t do this and it can’t do that; blah, blah, blah.
I am not writing this piece to try and convert all Android users to iPhone. And no, I am not getting paid by Apple. I am just telling you the story of a normal guy that wanted to change up the smartphone in which he was using. So, here goes:
I can unequivocally say that the iPhone 5s has a superior battery to the Nexus 4. It is not even close. In 365 days, I never once saw my iPhone battery under 20%. Not once! This was a constant struggle with all of my Android phones. My Samsung Galaxy SII and my Nexus 4 chewed through a battery faster than Steve Jobs expressed his hatred for Google. There were many trips I made with my Android phones in which I had to keep my phone plugged into the charger because the GPS was draining the battery so quickly.
I know all the Android lovers out there are going to say that GPS drains any battery. Um, I have never had this issue with my iPhone. In fact, I drove from Chapel Hill, NC to Alexandria, VA using GPS the entire time and my iPhone did not drop below 50%. I am certain my Android phones would have been dead by Richmond (which is about 2.5 hours). So, when it comes to battery life and GPS capabilities the significant advantage goes to the iPhone.
A huge problem I had with Android was the keyboard. Yes, I know there are third party app keyboards. I know you are going to suggest 308,398 different options and I can find the one I like. That is the whole point. I don’t want to! I want there to be a stock keyboard that just works. To this day I still use my Nexus 4 to do certain tasks and it pains me to have to use the keyboard. I hate it so much that I will get my laptop out and go through the struggle of starting up a computer to avoid using the Android keyboard.
I had the paid version of Swiftkey but for some reason Android would keep reverting back to the stock keyboard with any update. I eventually said screw it and went with the stock keyboard. The fact that Android will continue to revert back to certain apps drives me crazy. Why in the hell would I want to go back to the stock Android keyboard if I just updated an app that I paid for?!
All in all, the Apple iOS keyboard is, by far and away, superior to the Android keyboard. I have not tried any of the third party keyboard apps for the iOS because…..I don’t need to!
Wifi and 4G Connectivity
Hands down, my Apple iPhone 5s just runs the Internet better than any Android I have ever had. I am not sure why, but it is smoking fast. Living in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, I have 4G LTE at all times. Well, I do with my iPhone 5s. When I was using my Nexus 4 there was some issue with LTE connectivity. I never really figured out why it mattered, but that isn’t my job.
Wifi connectivity works better of my Apple iPhone 5s as well. Many times I would try to connect to wifi on my Nexus 4 and there would be a connectivity problem. In a society in which our patience is growing more thin by the day who wants to sit and wait for a phone to finally pick up a wifi connection. When toting around my Nexus 4 there were times that I didn’t even try to look up something on my phone because I knew it would be a chore rather than a pleasure.
Size and Overall Feel
I absolutely love the size and feel of the iPhone 5s. I was saddened to learn the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus were going to be so large. I honestly don’t know what I am going to do when my contract runs out for my iPhone 5s. Hopefully Apple will realize they need to offer a smaller/vintage version of their smartphone. I have no desire to have a 5 inch+ phone. They are getting too big in my opinion.
I also like the durable feel of the iPhone 5s. I feel this is something that is lost with the 6 and 6 Plus. They feel much more “plasticy”, almost like an Android. No one can argue that iPhone doesn’t have a stronger feel. In my article at the end of 2013 I mentioned how I cracked my Nexus 4 several times because it fell on the floor. In one full year, my iPhone 5s is in mint condition. It has not been dropped once and there is not a scratch anywhere on it. That is engineering.
One of the most important things for me to do in 2014 was to get away from the Internet. I did not want my work following me on my phone. I deleted almost all social media apps and did my best to stay away from email. The launch of Google Inbox ruined me for a few months but I am back on track. Although my business is Internet based I do not want to be connected at every waking moment. This means apps are not that important to me.
Admittedly, I like Twitter for sports news and humorous tweets. I also use Yelp to find the best restaurants when traveling. Other than that, I only use stock apps like Weather and Stocks. This is all I want. As previously mentioned, I do not want a smartphone that acts as a computer. I am on the computer multiple hours per day so I do not need any more of it.
The only app I can truly compare is the Maps app. I can say, without a shadow of a doubt, that Apple Maps sucks. It not only sucks, it is horrible. It has taken me down so many back alleys I feared for my life. I would never suggest ANY user use Apple Maps. Google Maps is the greatest smartphone app that has even been created. If you ever make the switch from Android to iPhone the first app you should download is Google Maps. You will thank me.
Overall, I am very pleased with my decision. With 365 days of experience with the Apple iPhone 5s I can easily say that I would make the same decision today. The Apple iPhone is just a better phone for me. That doesn’t mean it is the best phone for everybody. As one of my good friends once said, “Android is for those that like to play with their phones and customize everything and iPhone is for those that want an easy to use smartphone.” I have to agree with her.