In 2012/2014 I made a list of the iOS killer apps and the main reasons why I wasn’t willing to try Android at that time. Now that I have made the switch (last year) to try how much Android improved in the last few years I’m happy to report that some apps have finally arrived on Android too. The gap is still pretty significant though and if you’re not willing to adapt to use new apps and lose some features (, but gain others) you will probably never switch between platform. I feel though that as much there is the problem going from iOS to Android, the problem is felt in the other direction as well for different reasons. The freedom that you have on Android is still unparallel. iOS is a closed system and even though Apple has opened it way more than it used to in the last few years, it is still years behind Android in openness and will stay this way per company policy.
This is the list I wrote around that time:
There are a lot of third-party Twitter clients on Android, but Tweetbot is iOS only. Personally, the times I find myself using Twitter are becoming fewer and far in between. As of Facebook, I don’t like the company and the direction they’ve been doing towards for years and if I can avoid using the platform I will so for my very limited use (mostly consumption less than once a day) the official app is acceptable.
Whatsapp has been on Android for years.
There are not good note-taking apps that sync with Dropbox. I’m using XXSnatchPadXX and it works, but nothing compared to Drafts. Drafts are iOS only.
I’m not using a todo on mobile, I have OmniFocus installed on my mac only and it’s working fine for now. I found that what I need on the go (when I don’t have access to my mac) is a calendar. I need to know I need to be at this place at this hour.
See the comment under Drafts. Byword is iOS only but hadn’t been updated in a long while. That said a lot of iOS text editing tools are in a state of abandonment and neglect, so the problem is not only on Android, but iOS is still way better in this regard.
Pocket has been available on Android too for years.
- Pocket Casts
PocketCasts has been available on Android too for years.
- Day One
I’m not using Day One anymore, but nowadays Day One is also available on Android.
The Android version is sort of fine. I still much rather prefer the iOS and Mac version though.
Apps I will miss if I had to switch back to iOS:
ACR is a killer app. It records incoming and outcoming calls and uploads them to your server automatically and without you having to do anything at all, apart from setting it up the very first time.
I had to mention tasker, even though I haven’t found a use for it yet. I tend not to really use my phone too much apart from consumption so I try to keep its use to the least I can manage.
- Watch Support
This is obviously not the fault of iOS, but I bought an Android watch and obviously, it is very limited on iOS. If I’d have bought an Apple Watch it would have been totally useless on Android. It is not a point again either iOS or Android, but it is a factor of lock-in to keep in mind.
- App Store
The 2 different App Stores are probably the strongest lock-in factor. Over the years you have bought so many apps that the sunk cost fallacy is very strong. I found that it is not that bad. If like me you are pretty minimalist and try to heavily limit the number of applications you’re using you will find out that you don’t need all of the applications you’ve installed on your phone.