My iOS Experiment – Part 3

My iOS Experiment   Part 3

What started out as a light hearted discussion during our weekly podcast has turned into something of a monster. I’ve changed, I’ve become something I’ve always strived to avoid. I’m becoming a bit of a fan of Apple.

You may be wondering what on earth I’m on about here. Well a good few weeks ago I mentioned that I had never used an Apple product and Jamie and Ravi encouraged me to buy an Apple device to give it a go. I then wrote up part 1 of the experiment (details here).

A short while later I was offered an iPhone 4S 16gb in White brand new for a crazy cheap price, it would have been stupid to not have bought it. I then wrote up part 2 of the experiment (details here).

Since then a lot has happened in the world of Apple, what with the release of iOS 6 and the iPhone 5. When I finished part 2 I was left wondering where to go with the iPhone next. Yes it was a gorgeous device that had heaps of potential, but I was left feeling a little lost with it. Part of my problem is that I carry a Samsung Galaxy Note everywhere I go, so in comparison the iPhone just felt like a pretend phone really. Anything that I was trying to do on the smaller screen of the iPhone was always easier using the Galaxy Note. I even tried to just use the iPhone for a day and nothing else.

I had heard quite a bit about the iOS 6 update that would be coming soon, so I thought I should hold onto the iPhone until the update came out. It came and went without any problems, until I tried the maps app that is.

After a little playing about with the new maps I realised which bits worked and which bits didn’t. I dealt with it like most other people that day by tweeting a screenshot of my town looking a bit cloudy. Then upon further inspection during episode 15 I came across the 3D satellite view in London and I was pretty impressed. Yet still the whole world was up in arms about some dodgy satellite images and a few missing towns, strangely the most vocal of the angry people were Android users bashing anyone who mentioned having an iPhone that day.

Overall I felt a little let down by iOS 6 as in the past an OS upgrade (other platforms) usually meant the arrival of a load of new features. What had I got? Panorama pictures, Twitter and Facebook in the notification area, an updated Appstore and a slightly inferior mapping app. What was meant to be something a bit special and make the whole iOS experience better hadn’t really done much for me.

Overall I am finding the iPhone nice, but I keep finding things that I can’t do, yet I know Android and sometimes even Windows Phone can do. Take sharing for instance, you take a few pictures, check them out in the photos app and you decide you want to share some on Facebook, some on Twitter, some on Instgram and some on Google+. Yes you can do it but Instagram and Google+ have to be done from within the apps themself. Little things like that really start to annoy after a while, especially when you have seen how easy it could be.

The sheer selection of apps on offer is a little daunting as with most of the official app stores. The new look certainly helps you find the big name favourites quickly, but I do wonder how many gems are hidden away beneath all of the sheen.

So where do I go now? I am really not sure. As I keep repeating I am feeling a little lost with the iPhone. Would a slightly larger one help me out? Doubtful. I think for a phone, messaging and people management tool the iPhone is lagging behind even my Windows Phone devices. iOS 6 does add contact sync with Facebook but the implementation is still behind WP7. The more I see of the new WP8 devices the more I feel iOS may not be for me.

As regards standalone apps and hardware then the iPhone is ahead of the competition, I just don’t feel that is enough.

Android binaries update JRO03R
Meet like minded people at the "March of the Droids" event - March 2013
  • anon

    strange article – r u a fan or not???

    • Anonymous

      you don’t have to a totally black or white opinion to write an article do you?

      • James Pearce

        No you don’t

        • Anonymous

          thought not :-)

    • James Pearce

      It is not really about being a fan. More about a long term Android and Windows Phone user trying out iOS for the first time.
      Have a look through part 1 and 2 which are linked to in the second and third paragraphs for further explanation.

  • Anonymous

    OK, I only owned an iPhone for a week before sending it promptly back and I installed iOS6 on my iPod touch just to check out what all the fuss was about. So I don’t have a wealth of experience with iOS. But during the trials I soon realised exactly the same thing. The Android (and WP) experience is a whole lot more FUN! The way the apps link and interact with eachother on Android is a better experience than iOs, a good example is the way so much is linked to sayyour Google account.
    On the hardware front, I recently looked at, and held, the iPhone 5 in a local Carphone Warehouse. It looked good on the outside for sure but it was wholly let down by the ‘oh so dated’ screen full of square icons. It sat next to an iPhone 4S and though the screen was 1/2″ taller it just didn’t look any different. Compare this to HTC, Samsung and Sony, they all look very different inside and out.
    I conclude therefore that Apple and it’s operating system gives you less (and almost none) of one important factor… Choice.