Home Apple iOS 8 Is Almost Here; Bad Time to Switch to Android

iOS 8 Is Almost Here; Bad Time to Switch to Android

Going into an AT&T or Verizon Store might give you the idea that switching away from Apple’s iPhone ecosystem is the move to make, the way to go if you want more features and a device that can be customized by developers. Thanks to iOS 8 nothing could be further from the truth.

Announced at this year’s World Wide Developers Conference, iOS 8 is a bit deceptive. It doesn’t include a huge visual refresh like iOS 7 did for the iPhone and iPad. There are nips and tucks everywhere, little changes, like circles representing favorite contacts that’ll make the iPhone 5s and other iPhones that much more useful. Lurking just beneath the surface are tons of big changes meant for developers, giant sea changes that’ll make an iPhone with iOS 8 worth holding on to instead of switching to Android.

iPhone 5s with iOS 8

Really the customization story all starts with a single feature that Apple had refused to implement: custom keyboards. Devices running Google’s Android operating system have long been the only smartphones that allowed users to replace the included on-screen keyboard with another. Custom keyboard aren’t necessarily a stunning new user feature, but they are a way for users to make their device more personal. As such, there have to be some iPhone users out there who are considering switching to Android to get their hands on features like this.

When iPhone and iPad users download iOS 8 later this year they’ll also be able to download small applets that include brand new software keyboards.

Apple is updating the default keyboard included in iOS 8. That’ll likely take care of basic users. Still, this new third-party keyboard support will define the iOS experience for many users. What’s more, it’ll do so without users switching to Android or downloading what could or could not be a dangerous app from the Google Play Store. That’s a win.

Look forward to third party keyboards in iOS 8.
Look forward to third-party keyboards in iOS 8.

Today, the iTunes App Store is where mobile innovation happens. There are millions of apps for users to download and try. Some of them need third-party hardware accessories and some don’t. Some of them require users to have an account to a social network and some of them don’t. The key is how much variety there is.

The old mantra used to be that users went to the iTunes App Store because it had the newest and most exciting applications. Users who wanted apps that worked with each other and could do almost anything switched to devices running Android after they realized how locked down iPhone Apps were.

iOS 8 is going to completely neuter that advantage and give iPhone users another reason to stay exactly where they are.

Applications made for iOS 8 will finally be able to communicate with each other and integrate in unique ways. New Custom Actions will let different apps automate tasks like resizing images or adding watermarks to documents. iOS 8 apps will also let users share information with each other, allowing for situations where integration is vital. So for example, users have always been able to translate text on the iPhone thanks to certain apps. Going forward doing so could be a simple as pressing an on-screen button instead of copying and pasting text, which was one of the few ways information could be shared between different iPhone and iPad apps before.

Apple isn’t just empowering developers to communicate with other third-party apps, iOS 8 will also include different hooks that allow users to integrate directly into iOS 8, like Windows Phone and Android. Sharing to social media will be something that all iOS 8 apps can do. Apps will be able to create widgets in the notification area and surface options directly to users lock screens. Again, these are things that only Android users could do before.

Apple kicked off a revolution in mobile computing when it introduced apps to the world in iOS 2. This isn’t to say that applications hadn’t been around before then. They just weren’t as easy to purchase and easy to use. Apps on the iPhone changed personal computing in ways we could only dream of back then. Since then, Apple has mostly stayed in the background while Google’s Android operating system brought us our next wave of innovations. Today, the app and developers are essential to how we use our devices.

The company that made the iPhone embracing developers and their apps means a lot of things. It means that users don’t have to choose between a locked down operating system that has the best apps and a completely open operating system with decent but embarrassingly ugly apps that work together.  It means that developers won’t have to choose between creating iPhone apps that can’t integrate and sell well — iPhone owners spend more on apps — or Android apps that users won’t purchase.

Read: iOS 8 Release – 10 Things to Expect This Fall

Make no mistake. Apple added a lot of new features that users will be able to appreciate immediately. However, none of them are going to be as key as the developer things that are also baked in. Apple didn’t introduce one thing to catch up to Android. Instead, iOS 8 is a tidal wave of new features that’ll slowly eliminate almost every reason for users to switch to Android.

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17 Comments

  1. giuseppe melfi

    07/06/2014 at 4:16 pm

    Another isheep that doesn’t know what he is talking about…. paid by apple i would say…

    Reply

  2. Chris Waters

    07/06/2014 at 4:40 pm

    >>Apple didn’t introduce one thing to catch up to Android.
    You’re right! Apple simply introduced some things that bring them up to where Android was 3+ years ago.

    You also neglected to mention many of the other features Android has added since that time — and continues to add — putting iOS further behind.

    Reply

    • Sarg

      07/20/2014 at 3:40 pm

      Apple is not about features its about class, simple minds cannot understand that. Koreans found out years ago that Americans a suckers for comfort features. That is what turned Kia and Hundai from the worst brand to a acceptable brand. Features!!! Step your game up.

      Reply

  3. James Fauntelory

    07/06/2014 at 4:45 pm

    I second the above..& this is coming from an apple fan. The article is complete biased non-informative deceptive garbage.

    Reply

  4. Gradly

    07/06/2014 at 5:27 pm

    I don’t understand why all the fighting stuff going on or why people have to switch. Its not that an easy thing; people already invested in one ecosystem and it’s hard to switch eventually, I already invested in the iPhone since iPhone 3G, with a wealth of over 1200 apps, and now I have to accept whatever Apple does, and I’m OK with that. I think this applies to Android users as well.

    But for new users, they can decide what the features they want or make the majority of their daily workflow and choose the appropriate device accordingly.

    Reply

  5. cj

    07/06/2014 at 5:31 pm

    Just one more feed to take out of pulse. Ridiculous opinion. Keep your excitement to yourself and do you job, which should be to be unbiased and give readers opinions.

    Reply

  6. Mick

    07/06/2014 at 6:47 pm

    I was an avid Apple fan and sort of “tecky” user. I’ve had every iphone except the 5s and switched to Android. I doubt that I’ll ever go back to Apple. Android has passed them up and now they are following Android by demand. The comment on being invested in either of the ecosystems is unbalanced. Android has the same apps and their mostly free and many of the paid apps will cross over i. e. Evernote, Olive Tree, etc. You have to give Apple credit for being the originator of the smartphone but since the loss of Steve Jobs, it seems Apple has lost direction. Don’t be deceived by this article, it’s time to move to Android. You will never look back after you do…

    Reply

  7. Hildy J

    07/06/2014 at 8:19 pm

    First, a correction to a common misconceptions, Apple did not originate the smartphone – Microsoft and Palm smartphones preceded it – Apple originated the big (at the time) capacitive touch screen and virtual keyboard.

    That said, it doesn’t make a lot of sense for the average iOS or Android user to switch OSs. The pain will outweigh the gain. For a newcomer, going with iOS 8 because it offers the capabilities of Jelly Bean (especially with Lollipop around the corner) makes no sense at all. I suspect this is why the Apple demographic has been skewing older for a number of years. We got an iPhone for my 80 year old mother-in-law because the number of options on the Android phones confused her.

    Reply

  8. Jakob D

    07/06/2014 at 8:25 pm

    My Moto X will soon taste Android L Update :D f*** iOS 8,9, or 10 :P
    http://www.justaboutphones.com/motorola-moto-x-moto-g-android-l-5-0-update-confirmed/

    Reply

  9. Blaze

    07/06/2014 at 9:48 pm

    Yea I have t o agree, bias article, and your correct hildy j… idk why people say apple was the original makers of the smart phone. .and how can anyone w a iPhone think it’s better than most android flagship anyway..is beyond me. Android is in the lead here..After all the problems the ios 7 has given users. , I wonder if Steve went too the grave w most of his secrets. R.ip.

    Reply

  10. shaheena

    07/07/2014 at 12:57 am

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    Reply

  11. Jacob

    07/07/2014 at 6:54 am

    I agree with just about everyone about. I’ve been reading articles on this site for over a year and this is by far the WORST one I have ever had the disfortune of reading.

    iOS is terrible. iOS 8 is by no means a reason not to switch to Android.

    You mention 3 or 4 small things and pretend like they somehow fix all of the flaws with iOS and all of a sudden they can compete with Android’s features. iOS is awful. Android is so far ahead it’s not even a competition.

    Reply

  12. TheTruthSquad

    07/07/2014 at 9:45 am

    “There are millions of apps for users to download and try.”
    Where did you come up with this garbage? How many millions of apps are there? I think you are confusing apps with songs which is something an Apple fanboy might do.

    Reply

    • Chris Waters

      07/07/2014 at 10:30 am

      Agreed on many of these comments. Both platforms have their merits, their strengths, and their weaknesses; however, stating that iOS has suddenly caught up to Android is just naive and deceptive.

      It’s a poorly-titled, poorly-written, and almost paranoid-like article. A much better title and theme would have been “iOS 8 Is Almost Here; Apple Putting Forth Greater Effort to Try to Stem the Tide of Users Switching to Android”.

      Reply

      • Sarg

        07/20/2014 at 4:02 pm

        Your missing the point again Chris, Apple don’t have to catch up to android with features. If someone had to choose between a fully loaded Kia, Hundai or a middle of the line BMW. They would choose the BMW. Android has to appeal to the sucker in people. Apple builds devices that gives the user a unique experience not a feature you may or may not use and a device that not worth crap next year to someone else. Its like they say “The next big thing”.

        Reply

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    08/04/2014 at 10:04 am

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    11/09/2014 at 6:38 am

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