I switched from the iPhone to the Pixel. Here’s why I’m switching back. [x-post from r/GooglePixel]
_Disclaimer: Please note that these are my personal opinions. They are not in any way meant to imply that one device or operating system is superior to the other. On the contrary, I found Android to be, at the very least, on par with iOS. These conclusions are derived from my personal preferences._
**Background:** I owned iPhones for the past seven years (iPhone 5, 6, and 7) before switching to the Pixel 3 this winter. However, I’ll be switching back to the iPhone. Below are a few reasons why.
I missed iMessage a lot more than I thought I would. Most of my friends use iPhones, and no one uses WhatsApp, so switching to strictly SMS has been a bit of a pain. I also miss the ease of sharing pictures and videos in iMessage, which is just not a great experience with SMS. And yes, I did get flack from at least one person for switching to the “green bubbles.”
While I definitely enjoy the greater number of apps available, the quality of third-party apps on Android has been…disappointing. Even apps that I used on iOS don’t function quite as well on Android (which may be due to user error). On top of that, the third party apps available on iOS seem to generally be of higher quality than those on Android. The difference in apps available and the quality of those apps is a big deal to me.
Battery life has been a letdown. For a brand new, premium smartphone running the latest version of its operating system, I shouldn’t be at 30% battery at 5:00 pm with light use. When I was using an iPhone, I could go an entire day without having to recharge; not so with the Pixel. While the fast-charging feature does somewhat make up for this problem, I would rather just have better battery life.
One of the main reasons I picked up the Pixel was Android. I had gotten bored with iOS and I thought that what I wanted in an OS was more customizability. It turns out that being able to endlessly tweak and optimize my phone isn’t what I really wanted. Android is great for those who like to customize and optimize their workflows, but I don’t want to have to think about where things are – I just want to get things done. In the six months I’ve had my Pixel, I’ve only customized the launcher and the icons. I will say that being able to batch my notifications via a third-party app has been amazing and something that I will miss when I switch back.
What I also want is for everything to just work – the first time. I’ve been surprised at how often apps hang up or aren’t smooth. I’ve even had the entire phone freeze up a few times, even though I’m not doing anything outside of normal use. iOS is familiar, smooth, and (for me) user-friendly. Turns out that the grass isn’t greener, after all.
**TL;DR:** Long-time iPhone user misses iMessage, third-party app market, and iOS. Huge surprise, I know. Most of what I miss I would attribute to familiarity with an OS. I’d be willing to bet that the longer a person uses a particular OS, the harder it will be to switch. My experience with Android has been mostly positive, but there is enough friction to make me miss iOS, so back to the iPhone I go.