This is not going to be a cheap article where I joke that I wish my phone didn’t explode. (as funny as it is) or make silly comparisons using a huge number of inexpensive Android phones. Instead, I want to see what Google, Android smartphone makers, and app developers can do to get me, a dedicated Apple fan, on the green side.
Best design across the board
Some Android phones are just fine. I’m a big fan of HTC and Sony, and to a lesser extent Samsung, although I can still appreciate their latest models. But the hardware is only one part of the design. As Steve Jobs said in a New York Times profile in 2003:
Most people make the mistake of thinking that design is what it looks like. People think it’s plywood, that the designers handed this box and said, «Make it look good!» This is not what we think about design. It’s not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.
Even if the phone looks great when it sits on a table, if the experience doesn’t match, it’s not well designed. This is where Android, as an operating system, falls for me.
Design is obviously subjective, so I’m sure there are plenty of people out there who will disagree with me for good reasons. For me, however, it all comes down to philosophy.
On the iPhone, everything seems to be carefully thought out. Johnny Ive signed every decision. It all matches.
On an Android phone, it seems like the committee has delegated everything…badly. Sometimes there are flashes of glitter (material design looks great in the stock Google apps), and sometimes you have a back button that you don’t know where it will take you, two email apps, a custom ugly sin skin from the manufacturer, and, To top it all off, the user has included this awful wavy font. It looks like eight different designers worked from twelve different assignments.
Hardware and software integration
Whichever way you go, top Android phones run on serious hardware. The Galaxy Note 7 is powered by the latest 2.3GHz Octa-Core Snapdragon processor and 4GB of RAM, while the regular iPhone 7 is powered by Apple’s new A10 Fusion quad-core processor and 2GB of RAM (plus gets 3GB).