What's still wrong with Android (and right with iOS)

Summary:While the Apple community awaits the reported release of a new version of iOS and new i-devices to run it, one Android power user lists what turns him off about Android and has turned him into a switcher to the iPad.

There's plenty of chatter over perceived problems with Apple innovation and leadership, missed sales expectations, along with glowing reports about the Android competition. According to reports, Apple will roll out new mobile hardware in the first half of September and iOS 7, the new version of its mobile operating system. For some, the expectation is that instead of a celebration, the announcements will become a whimper because the tidal wave of Google Android has overtaken Apple.

However, one Android power user says he is over Android — someone who knows what he's doing and has plenty of experience around Linux. He's decided to go with the reliable alternative: iOS.

The post in question is on EE Times by Caleb Kraft, its chief community editor. He has a long history building and using Linux desktop and server systems.

Kraft bought a used, first-generation iPad for his kids, but he decided first to run a rooted Nook Color and recently a Nexus7 v2. He hoped he could "figuratively give the finger to the big evil corporation of Apple." But no.

In the post, Kraft then runs down the reasons he is dumping Android and buying an iPad: Broken Bluetooth support with peripherals; hardware fragmentation; bugs in the OS and in applications; and problematic hardware. It's great reading.

[Bugginess in both the OS and the applications] is the biggest annoyance. The touchscreen has decided to become unresponsive at least once a day since I bought it. It will be working fine, but then suddenly finger touches don't count. I have to hold my finger in place for a second for it to register, then sometimes it will register it as multiple touches. A quick reboot fixes the problem, but that is a pain in the butt when you're trying to carry out a task.

Still, Kraft admires the Nexus hardware ID. He says that Android is close to being something he would "hand to my grandmother with confidence." But close isn't good enough. He's not in the market for a fixer-upper.

If I were one of those guys who had to write a review after an hour of hands-on time, I'd be gushing over this thing. However, I'm faced with the following issues right now:

I can't work on it (I'm not writing a 1,000 word article with the admittedly nice on screen keyboard).

I can't count on it to work correctly when I pick it up.

Of course, most everything that's wrong with Android is mostly right with Apple's hardware and software. iPads and iPhones all work well and in an understandable way to users. Apple's peripherals mostly play well and there are plenty of them. There are hundreds of thousands of great applications that are reliable and crash less often. As Kraft points out, iOS users spend their time doing work and not taking time getting their devices to work.

Then there's the results from Forrester Research's Forrsights Developer Survey(Q1 2013) that show that still more software developers are choosing to release their apps on iOS first with Android coming in second, despite the numbers.

As I've pointed out before, there are many other problems with the Android market when it comes to developers. Sheer market base numbers don't necessarily mean much if customers aren't buying apps or using them.

For example, while reports such as the Forrsights Survey show that there are more developers coding for Android, a different survey by App Promo points out that some 40 percent aren't earning a dime from the work compared to their iOS counterparts.

As Kraft says, "No single issue has led me to this point [of buying an iPad], but rather, a collection of small annoyances has outweighed my desire to have an Android device." Certainly, he's not alone.

Topics: Apple, Android, Apps, iOS

About

David Morgenstern has covered the Mac market and other technology segments for 20 years. In the recent past, he founded Ziff-Davis' Storage Supersite, served as news editor for Ziff Davis Internet and held several executive editorial positions at eWEEK. In the 1990s, David was editor of Ziff Davis' award-winning MacWEEK news publication a... Full Bio

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