While the iPhone 7 isn’t really like any of the Android phones I have used, what really sets iPhones apart is iOS. The iPhone 7 came with iOS 10 and adjusting to a completely new OS and the app store was the biggest hurdle for me to adjust to the iPhone 7. Like I mentioned earlier, my past iOS experience was mostly in passing or toying around with the original iPod Touch. So to get started I had to create a new account and I spent a few days just getting a feel for the completely different interface over a few days. The iPhone 7 came in just a few days before my wife and I drove from Ohio down to Florida for vacation so I put a lot of focus on trying to adjust and finding the apps I use or similar apps on the App Store.
A few things that stood out to me initially as an android user. For starters trying to navigate the OS I had a lot of trouble losing the back button as a quick way to go back a page or to back out to the main menu without closing something. iOS leaves this up to the software itself and most you can swipe to move back but even after a month of using the phone I still found times where I couldn’t figure out how to go back. The home button though did make it easy to move back to the home screen at any point. When there it took me a while and a google search to figure out how to consistently bring up the task manager to go back to open apps or to close what you have open. The picture below is what it looks like. The trouble was that I knew the home button did it, but adjusting to the haptic click to do the double click was what caused me issues.
A lot of times trying to do that would accidentally put me in a conversation with Siri and let’s be honest Siri is a little snarky. She didn’t like my smartass comments and wasn’t afraid to tell me off to my wife’s enjoyment of course. As someone who likes to toy with Google Now from time to time Siri was very similar and it did have a lot of the controls that Google has. On top of being able to call and text people, you can also open up your camera or ask it the weather and sports scores. I still prefer Google Nows better integration with hardware and apps, but Siri is great for anyone being lazy or if you are like my Mom who likes to do all of her texts via text to speech to avoid typing on the touch screen.
Once I had my apps downloaded I spent time getting my home screen setup with all of the apps I might use on our trip. I prefer Androids way of having a blank home page with an app button to get to all of your apps. This makes setting up your homepage quicker. Android also has all of the widgets that you can run on your homepage and iOS doesn’t have that. Once setup though it wasn’t hard to use and I love that apps do show the number of messages or notifications you have right on them.
Like Android iOS has drop down notifications when you get a message or notification and are using the phone. You can also drag the top down to see all of your notifications. Swiping to get rid of a notification brings up a confirm box, I would personally like to drop that to make clearing out notifications quicker. In the end, I just left all of my notifications to avoid the trouble.
Being a phone, it’s important for the phone app to be easy to use and frankly the phone app on iOS really wasn’t any different than what I’m used to on Android. You can set favorites, flip through recent calls, or go through your contacts on the app quickly and easily.
Beyond the OS itself, Apple has a great selection of exclusive software that comes with their phones. In fact, it’s the only software that comes with the phone, something I wish would also happen with all Android phones. Exclusive software is huge because once someone starts to use an app or two everyday you aren’t going to want to jump over to Windows or Android. In fact, I think this is the main reason people stick with one side or the other. You invest a lot of money into your app purchases and between OS specific apps and apps from Apple and companies like Samsung it makes it hard to switch over without a big disruption. Most people know about Apples iTunes/Music functionality and that is a big draw for iPhones but I really enjoyed things like Facetime and GarageBand. Facetime and Apples messaging really pushes whole social groups to stick with Apple because without your friends having an iPhone you lose all of the good features. GarageBand, on the other hand, took me back to being a kid and playing with the keyboards and digital drum kits setup in stores when I was young. I spent hours in the app making music using all of the different interments, driving my wife crazy with the noise.