I'm Thinking About Switching from iOS to Android; User Experiences Wanted

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I am thinking of switching from an iPhone to Android, and I have some questions. Has anyone switched from iOS to Android? What have your experiences been? Would you recommend switching? If I switch, is the Samsung Galaxy a good option, or should I choose a different phone?

Thank you,



Submitted by Dennis Westphal on Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Hi, there are several questions that come to mind.
Why do you want to switch?
What Apps are you currently using on your iPhone?
What are you using your iPhone for?
Do you use Voiceover in other languages than English?

I wouldn't recommend any other devices than the Nexus devices. Reason for that is that almost all companies bold on another layer onto android. That results in Talkback to not being able to read certain objects or in case of my girlfriend not even SMS. I personally had trouble with Android which frustrated me because I couldn't read most of the websites I consumed my news from. However it is worth trying out if somebody in your family or friends already have a Android device. In my opinion however Apple is far superior regarding stability, accessibility and security. Hope that helps a bit.

Submitted by Mike Fulton on Wednesday, February 11, 2015


Yes that is helpful. Noone in my family currently has an Android device. I only use VO in English. I was thinking of switching only because Android is less locked-down than iOS.

Submitted by bryan mcglashan on Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Hi, to start off with I will say that it entirely depends on what you're looking for the device to do. You are correct though, android is much more customisable than IOS. IOS is much simpler and a lot more accessible. Android has come a very long way accessibility wise however, talk back and android does take a lot of time to get used to so I would suggest a lot of time and patience. I have an android tablet and I would definitely say that it can be used productively. Just for reference I have a Samsung Galaxy tab 4 running android 4.2 (kit cat) please feel free to contact me if you need more info. Hope this helps you.


Submitted by AppleVis on Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

Could we please give people a polite reminder that this website is for users of Apple products.

Although there are instances when it may be perfectly legitimate to discuss on here the relative merits of iOS and Android, this is neither the appropriate or best place to be asking for information about using Android or advice on Android handsets.

Submitted by Raul on Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Well, there is a topic on why someone didn't like Android and how he switched back to iPhone, why this shouldn't be allowed? This guy is just asking for opinions and experiences. He knows how VoiceOver works on the idevices and needs info on diferrences with Talkback. I can't think of a better place to ask but here, where people surely own at least an iDevice.

I don't want to sound offensive at all, but I think some people from this community can help with this topic, and this is the General Chat, not a specific one.

Thanks appleviz for your polite reminder.
There are forums out there for Android products.
One would expect someone coming from Android to IOS to come to this forum instead of asking for experiences on an Android site.

Submitted by Paul on Thursday, February 12, 2015

Mike, one option you didn't mention is jailbreaking an iOS device. This is an option for those who want their device to be more customizable than a standard iOS device without switching to Android, but it comes with risks and limitations, which someone more familiar with the topic could fill you in on. That being said, the closed nature of iOS makes it easier for you to maintain a secure device compared with a jailbroken iOS device or an Android device, at the cost of some customizability.

I have to ask, how valuable is customizability really? Generally speaking, most, if not all, people think more options is better than limited options, but that is not always the case. More options means there are more decisions to be made, and more decisions can lead to indecision. The fact you asked about the best Android device proves my point quite well. With Android, you can't just say, "I want an Android phone," because there are a lot of Android phones, and each can offer a different experience, where as with an iPhone, you can generally opt for the most expensive iPhone you can afford (or the cheapest), and you'll have pretty much the same experience as another iPhone model, even if they use different hardware. It's definitely something deliberate Apple does to offer fewer choices, because fewer choices means easier decisions, which can often translate to sales.

Before someone points out that Android is open source (I've seen that argument before), just as commercial software doesn't guaranty quality, open source also doesn't guaranty quality. From a user's perspective (i.e. someone who uses the software with no ability or desire to work on its source), open source can be worse than commercial software. You know who makes the decisions on an open source project, especially if it has a lot of volunteers? The programmers. As a programmer myself, I know, and I've seen, that programmers have a different mindset when it comes to using software than the average user, and those differences lead to guessing what the average user wants, or what might be clear to the average user. Case in point, I once asked the Audacity developers about an option to convert a mono track to a stereo track, and the idea was rejected on the basis that a user might be confused into thinking that the functionality added a stereo effect, even if it was placed under the Track menu where the "stereo to mono" option is found.

Submitted by Saqib on Thursday, February 12, 2015

Hi. I use both platforms and I don't struggle with either. I learnt Android in a couple of weeks last summer after using iPhones for 4 years. I would go for the Samsung Galaxy S5 as Samsung have good accessibility features like tripple tap to turn Talkback on or off and you can invert colours. Firefox was the web browser to download and use as it had accessibility features. I use my Samsung for social networking and messaging on WhatsApp and general messages. There is an e-mail client that you can use and it's very accessible and it's called Aqua-mail. Don't let people lead you to believe that Android is a difficult OS to use. You will generally get that opinion from people who haven't gave it much time and they most probebly users of IOS devices. You can't learn Android properly if you are going to compare it to IOS because they are 2 different operating systems. This is usually one's downfall and they just throw in the towel and go back to using Apple devices. I like all Apple devices but enjoy the choice that Android brings to the table. I would stick to Samsung or to the Google Nexus line of phones. It's good for you to learn as many operating systems as you can because it just widens your choice. Not everyone can afford IOS devices and you can find something that will cost a third of the price of an iPhone and do the same job without restrictions. I usually keep one of each as I'm always checking the progress of accessibility on both platforms.