Why the iPhone 4S Makes Me Want a New Android Phone

I previously posted that in order for Apple to lure me back to the iPhone camp, they would have to include a few things.

To catch you up, Apple announced the iPhone 4S, which has faster internals and a new camera, but the same old iPhone 4 look.

My top priority: a larger screen! Sadly, Tim Cook disappointed me in his first Apple press event. I love the retina display of the iPhone 4 and didn’t really want the new one to look much different from the old one. I just like the 4-inch plus screens of many of the Android phones on the market today.

The second thing I wanted was better voice integration. It looks like Siri Assistant will give users just that. In fact, that one feature alone looks good enough to make me serious consider forgoing my top priority in order to jump back into the arms of Apple. But I don’t think so.

iPhone 4 Mockup Missed the Mark

Apple missed the mark by not copying this mockup

A few more features were left out of the iPhone 4S announcement. I want to skin the keyboard on my phone with something like Swype or the FlexT9 keyboard so I can slide across the smooth screen to enter text. I can’t do that without jail breaking. Every update moves those goalposts making it harder to stay on the cutting edge, something I like to do, while still having all the features I want.

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On Android the counterpart to jail breaking – rooting – usually results in running newer versions of the OS before others using your handset get it. With iOS the opposite happens. If I want the latest version I often must wait for a new jailbreak or resist downloading the update.

Apple left a lot of money on the table when it failed to enlarge the screen. They fixed the antenna issues and we will likely not see a degradation in GPS signal quality. It doesn’t look like the iPhone 4S will get built-in turn-by-turn directions like Android has. I could live without it since I’ve already purchased a couple of GPS Nav apps for the iPhone. If Apple bumped the screen size just half an inch, I’d be buying two new iPhones instead of just the one I’m getting for my wife.

I’ll wait a bit and think. If I don’t go back, then I will likely look for the best Android phone on AT&T, which right looks like the Samsung Galaxy S II. So help me out.

Am I nuts for not going iPhone just because of the screen size or do you agree that the iPhone 4S leaves you wanting more? Which AT&T Android phone should I get to replace my Infuse 4G?

Comments

  1. gmich says

    Go for the Galaxy S II. I have the Sprint version and it is really a fantastic phone. Nothing about the iPhone 4S makes me want to switch. Screen is big, colors pop, everything is smooth, and TouchWiz is actually pretty good. I think it’s the best phone out there–iPhone included.

    • Whiterockdevelopment says

      I switched to Android from my old IPhone 3GS and it has been a disaster. I am tired of taking the battery out and the app crashes. I would have hoped for the upgraded IPhone 5 but I have an IPad for the larger screen if needed and does everything the IPhone can do. I am going back to Apple and purchasing the 4S. Everything just seems to work.

      • Eric says

        Why don’t you tell us which Android phone you have? That might have a Tad bit to do with it.

      • JP says

        I’ve had eight different Android phones from four different manufacturers, running both skinned and vanilla Android, and custom ROMs, and I’ve never had to pull a battery.  I think you must be getting Android confused with Blackberry OS.  I’ll agree with you that apps do sometimes crash.  But my jailbroken Verizon iPhone 4 was the buggiest phone I’ve owned in the last three years, so YMMV.

        • Btc5472 says

          U probably havent owned any motorola phones. They are all crap and.all turn them selves off everyday! They just sucked up all my RAM until it killed itself. I had the x x2 defy and droid 3. All crap. I own the galaxy nexus now and its phenominal

    • mark says

      Go back with the iPhone. There is stability and continuity there.  Android drops a new phone every week and even the service people can’t keep up with all the iterations and you suffer when it inevitably will fails. Android phones are designed with the bottom line in mind while the iPhone is designed for functionality ease of use and never mind there untouchable apps collection.  Had an Android and won’t ever tread those waters again.

    • Kwiz says

      no actually the infuse 4g is a really good phone ive had the iphone but its not as great as people make it out to be

      • Anon says

        ohh man.. the iPhone doesn’t have navigation???? I use that ALLLL the time!  I wouldn’t be able to live with out it!  Thats def a FAIL for the iPhone. 

        • mark says

          iPhone doesn’t have GPS??? Are you serious??? Sounds like you’ve been living under a rock or a deliberately playing dumb, hopefully its an act. Of course the iPhone has GPS. What smartphone doesn’t have that??? FAIL BLOG!!

  2. dennisjconner says

    Yes, you are nuts.. you experience iLife in all other forms. I’ve never used a droid, but I can’t believe it would be more intuitive than iAnything. 

  3. BrownSuga says

    well… since I have to wait until the 14th for the 4S to be available I will get the chance to see what Android has to say on the 11th. I would have loved a iphone with a bigger screen and a redesigned body but they haven’t however the dual core and better camera are tantalizing to someone such as myself that has not upgraded since I received my Tilt 2  from HTC because they couldn’t get it right when repairing my Fuze. To grasp my attention Android has to function smoothly w/o the need to be modded and have OTA updates. I’d rather have something from HTC because I prefer sense because I’m not too fond of Samsung or Motorola’s UI but it could be just carrier specific. I will just be happy to get rid of this antiquated WinMo 6.5 device I have been holding on to because nothing out filled all of my desires for a new smartphone…but I may just have to suck it up and choose something.

  4. Asealie says

    Totally agree, we have been waiting for apple to bring us a better phone than the galaxy II s but all the did was give us the same thing as the samsung but running iOS5 for a higher price than the samsung. I am huge apple fan, but think I am going to android phones now.

  5. Anonymous says

    None of the apps will fit a larger screen.  You expect Apple to surprise developers with a new resolution to satisfy some droid fan boi’s?   An x,y point system is used.  Last thing apple wants is to cause fragmentation in their own ecosystem.  PS…get an Android phone, cause you don’t what you are talking about.

    If you want a larger screen, get an ipad.

    • Victor says

      I agree 100%. apple is not going to upset it’s own apple cart for the sake of satisfying some. Wish they would allow their “assistant” to work on the iPhone 4 though.

    • Bob says

      They don’t need to change the resolution, just the size, that wouldn’t cause any fragmentation at all.  The Infuse screen is amazing, it is great that they can do that without having the same resolution as the iPhone, and it is physically larger.

  6. Kenny Teoh Khin Yee says

    Well. You don’t want just any Android phone. You want a
    Samsung Galaxy S II. In broader sense of the definition of Android phones, most
    of them (aside from the top end Motorola Atrix and some other high end phones)
    still come really short of the iPhone 4, let alone the iPhone 4S.

    For many reasons I have held on to the iPhone 4 instead of
    the Android phone that I own.  This is
    why….  IMHO, a smartphone that can do
    1,000 things and has the most brilliant screen in the universe is as good as
    dust if it doesn’t have the battery life to sustain its use beyond the evening.

    I’ve had the Samsung Android phone and the battery life is
    pretty dismal. Under the kind of usage that I put my smartphone/mobile devices
    through, the customized non-removeable battery extracts every ounce of battery
    life out of the cells that can be fitted into the enclosure, versus the
    removeable (for what? Do ppl actually carry an extra battery in their pocket?
    In theory you’re supposed to be able to swap batteries over. But who does
    that?)

    I’ve been able to do the same things that a phone with 0.5
    inches more screen real estate can, and do it for a longer duration. I don’t
    feel like I’ve missed out on any extra features that are limited to only a 4
    incher (or more) of a smartphone could muster.

    To me, the biggest point to keep me away from Android is its marketplace. It is
    full of junk. I’ve never liked any of the downloaded customizable fonts. They
    tend to mess up the look and feel of the phone. Out of the 20 live wallpapers I’ve
    downloaded, only 2 have succeeded in not melting my retina from the gaudy use
    of colors and bad animation. Looking for quality app is difficult when you have
    to sieve through tons of garbage apps that look like they were produced in the
    basement of some nerdy computer engineering teenager or a sweatshop in China.

    Well whether its Swype or FlexT9 keyboards and etc. Or how easy it is to change
    the Bluetooth settings, it’s really a matter of preference. The iPhone has a
    physical button for turning on ‘Silent’ mode. While some other phones may not have.  Things like that are subjective. To each his
    own when it comes to things like this, I say. 
    Case in point, Nokia is the largest handset maker in the world in 2011,
    selling Symbian and feature phones to the world.  A lot of people in the tech community tend to
    forget that the no. 1 mobile phone maker in the world is still Nokia. There are
    consumers out there who are still coughing up money to buy these old phones. Why?
    Because of familiarity and personal preference. Regardless that the bulk of
    Nokia phones sold do not have 512MB RAM or dual core processor.  It’s a matter of choosing the right user experience
    that suits you, at the right budget.

    So I respect that you’re keen on the Samsung Galaxy S II. It’s
    a pretty spectacular piece of mobile gadget, that I have to say. Big screen and
    all. If bigger screen, poorer battery life (which I can attest to) and the
    Android marketplace is tolerable to you… then take the plunge! Go for it.

    What’s the worst thing that could happen? In case you don’t
    like the Samsung Galaxy S II in a couple of months, there will be an iPhone 5
    around the corner.

    J

    • Mikey says

      Bad battery life? What samsung android did you have??? Because there are tons of samsung androids.

      However the samsung infuse 4G is spectacular! It has a 4.5″ screen and to bothe my opinion and others looks better than a retina display. Thy have both been compared to side by side. And a .5″ sceen upgrade is not going to mess with the resolution that much trust me. My infuse although not dual core has a 1.2 ghz processor which can and has out done oher dual core phones. It has 512mb of useable ram! It is amazing at multi tasking- letting me call and play apps or surf the web at the same time.

      My infuses battery lasts me well into the nigh with fairly heavy use. This use includes: at least 3 hours of music, at least 3 hours on the web, calls every now and than, apps for a long time, camera at least 1 hour of camera use, movies-which look amazing, and youtube atleast an hour. That is my averge everyday use. And it lasts from 5:30am until 11:00 pm which is when i go to bed and still has 35% battery life left!
      *–also no i dont lower my brightness, no i dont turn off my data or wifi when not in use, i dont do anything to try and make my battery life longer.

      Now my biggest problem with the iphone is bluetooth! With an iphone you cant just bluetooth a file to anybody. With my android i can bluetooth anything weather its a song, picture, app file, zipped folder it can be bluetoothed to just about any device excluding iphones-this includes computers, other phone from different manufacturers.

      The next big problem with iphones is how much they are locked down! Ive owned only one iphone the 3Gs but i couldnt stand how it was locked down! And even jailbreaking wouldnt fully fix this problem

      the last problem is flash! No not cera flash but software flash! With my android i can watch flash videos/youtube videos that are not available on mobile, i can play flash games- there is just so much missing that you dont even relize how much is missing unil you switch to android

      now alot of androids are crap and buggy, but the infuse is next to flawless in my opinion-never droped a call on me, amazing gps-even better than our garmin, only had three or four apps crash on me-ive had way more crash on my 3Gs even before i jailbroke, amazing screen and color, its fast, one of the least locked down phones on android, i can download apps from anywhere and install them. Battery lofe is amazing

      as far as the market goes its incredibly easy to find good apps-just look at the top section. Besides apps dont make the phone-all you need are a couple to pass the time, if you get a phone just for apps than you are a no life nerd sorry

    • Btc5472 says

      I carry an extra battery around in my pocket. Just in case of a long car ride, theme park, waiting in line, ill always have my 2 batteries.

  7. Troll71652 says

    I agree the screen size is the key requirement; all those pixels on 3.5 inches are a waste for my squinty eyesight. For me, you can forget thinner and teardrop shapes, bigger is better, especially if It allows the A6 chip(?) with 128gb, a much larger capacity battery to fit (yeah I know, dream-on and in all seriousness, apart from the screen, the spec is pretty good). All I wanted shape-wise was slightly larger iPhone 4 to accommodate the screen, plus a cool all metal back. At least we did get 64gb, so all my stuff, currently up to 34 gb on iPad will now fit – not sure how icloud will deal with that on a 32gb 3GS! But for now, I’m not going to rush Into an upgrade, whereas 4 inches would have had me rushing to pre-order on October 7th.

  8. Aphatmouse says

    Siri is a major feature and has me about 60% likely to stay apple and upgrade. I desperately wanted a larger screen. Using an EVO for 3 or 4 hours and then going back to an iphone= shameful for the iphone. This will be the first generation of iphone that I will actually take a hard look at android before I upgrade- and that speaks volumes, I think!

  9. Guest says

    Nexus Prime is probably just Galaxy SII…rebranded. I wish the SII was built by HTC. I love the metal bodies.

    • S. Kyle Davis says

      I doubt it. For one thing, Nexus implies stock android, and with Google co-announcing, the new Ice Cream Sandwhich OS seems very likely to me.

      Plus, I don’t know why they wouldn’t include the HD 720p screen from the new Taiwan version of the GS2 (the GS2 HD) that came out recently. Other 720p phones are coming in the next month or two, and Samsung would be stupid not to include it if they have it, unless they have another mega-phone coming out before the end of the year. 

      • Mikey says

        Im pretty sure the gs2 has 720p in fact i thought it had 1080p video recording-720p has been standard for a couple months now- i got my Samsung infuse back in may and it has a 8mp camera with 720p video recording and a 1.2 or 1.3 mp camera in the front

  10. Michael Lynn says

    I just bought a Galaxy S2 on Sunday and it’s incredible.  My fingers fit nicely around (and on) the 4.3 inch screen (a whole inch larger than the iPhone 4).  And the Android software has come a LONG way in its short life.  So much so that Apple is now copying features it had 2 years ago:  notification system, Google voice, etc.  I’m wondering when Apple will get widgets.  I would hate to have to open an app to get the weather or see new emails or turn off wireless.  

    Specs on both are nearly identical (right down to the camera quality and processor).  Front camera on a SGS2 is 2MP (1600×1200) instead of iPhone’s tiny VGA (640×480), though.  And if you want to know the truth, Samsung builds the A5 processor.  So they’re probably nearly identical in processing.

    But one of the greatest reasons to buy a Galaxy S2:  the display.  Samsung knows displays and they know that resolution is only one aspect of the display.  Put an iPhone next to a Galaxy S2 (or S1 for that matter) and the iPhone will look drab and grey.  SAMOLED+ is incredible.  No other phone can beat Samsung displays regardless of the resolution.  But if you HAVE to have the “retina” display wait for the Nexus Prime.  It will have the larger screen with retina quality (320 PPI) resolution and the color quality of SAMOLED.  That’s the complete package.

    • Mikey says

      I have the samsung infuse 4G and its SAMOLED+ screen wrecks all retina screens! And im pretty sure the SGS2 wrexks the 4s in specs

      SGS2 specs:
      processor-ARM Cortex A9 Exynos dual-core 1.2GHz ****notice the A9
      RAM-1GB
      Camera-8mp back, 1080p video recording and a 2mp front camera

      4s specs
      Processor-A5 dual core processor ***notice A5
      RAM-512mb
      Camera-8mp back 720p recording, and not sure about front but i dont even think its 1mp

      SGS2 has twice the ram=twice the multi tasking
      SGS2 has an A9 VS A5

      the A5 is the same processor thats in the ipad 2- talk about old
      this A9 just came out chances are its going to work alot better-just saying

      • leol_91 says

        A9 samsung has nothing to do with A5 Apple. Its different chips, different architecture.

        Anything you said in your post is now irrelevant due to the severe lack of knowledge you’ve displayed saying Samsung A9 is better than Apple A5 because A5 is less number than A9 and that both chips are almost the same.

  11. Heavyhitters Mota says

    I buy lots of phones I had the Photon and the galaxy s2 the photon was good phone but the sprint tv looked like crap battery was ok one charge mad it all day with light use. Galaxy s2 was a great phone but on 4g battey only got about 3.5 hrs and the worse part it took forever to recharge, like 2.5-3 hrs.with iPhone when I plug it in to wall I get from 8% to 90% in about 45 min. I always seem to come back to my iPhone 4. Once you jailbreak skys the limit. It’s not so easy to get everything from android market even if your phone is rooted. As for big screen all that does is run your battery quickly. IPhone screen look better then any other phone out there

  12. Rolan75mota says

    iPhone 4s any iPhone over android any day android phones are glitchy app always seem to crash and just close. That don’t happen with the iPhone. Glaxay s2 is a good phone just need to get the battery life issue resolved. IPhone is a good reliable phone and now that Sprint is offering it u can get it on the 69.00 everything plan u can’t go wrong

    • Maverikva says

      Really?  Perhaps my experience is different because I have so many apps installed.  I’ve had occasions where my iPhone has become unresponsive, applications have closed unexpectedly (no error messages, no nothing – they just ‘pop out of existence’), and iTunes problems galore.  I suspect that iTunes on Mac may have received additional attention from Apple that the Windows version hasn’t but it has to be one of the worst pieces of software ever developed.  It seems to me that many Apple users are suffering from the Apple halo effect and are more forgiving than those of other companies when such problems occur.  Do a google search for ‘ios 5 upgrade problems’ and you’ll see what I mean.  Unfortunately, I was one of those.  I don’t mean to bash Apple.  I have both Apple and Android devices and Apple does make decent hardware.  But both Apple and Android have their advantages and disadvantages and, quite honestly, I’ve had fewer issues with my Android devices (of course that may change now that we don’t have to be tethered to iTunes – iTunes has been the biggest annoyance of all!). 

      As for the 4S, there’s nothing there that compels me to upgrade at this time.  The ‘new’ feature set is rather modest and not worth the upgrade to me.  I’ll wait to see what iPhone 5 has to offer.

  13. Cameron Turner says

    i have had an iphone since the first one came out and had an iphone 4, this year i saw the new Galaxy S2 and had to have one. loved features like the dual clock contact short cuts the big screen and so on. how ever for me it was the worst decision i ever made i have gone back to an iphone now after only 5 months. some of the reasons like the itunes store just makes life easy for me, i do a lot of travel. The galaxy is a rad phone but i just struggled with it.

  14. Lmustin says

    I’ve never had a Droid, but the iPhone is just the stuff. I enjoy everything about it. I love how it syncs and work with my other idevices. I’m not very techy so it’s simple, fun, fast, and everything works.

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