As the clock struck 12 on New year’s eve, I am officially out with Android.
Good bye Samsung S20 and Android
I have been an android user from the time that I started using smartphones. But it is not to say that I despised Apple. I was afraid of eco-system lock in for all this while. But I eventually caved in1 and am so glad I did(even though it took me so much time)
I have always been an admirer of Apple products, despite it being pricey2. But, there was something with my mindset about eco-system lock-in. As a tech enthusiast being with Android meant that I had the freedom to get a Pixel phone or any other Android device, use a smartwatch I liked from a different company and a earbuds from another company. But that wouldn’t be the case if you went into Apple. You get the Iphone, then it meant that you need to get the Apple watch to ensure a good experience. But this was way back and some how that thought stuck on.
Couple of other reasons why I kept on using Android was that 1. I didn’t like the idea of having to sync stuff through iTunes. I liked the simplicity that Android phones provided where I plug them into USB and just drag drop items. 2. External memory card, although with S20 being the last of flagship phone to offer external memory card option, this is no longer a reason to hold on to. I liked that I can pop external card from one phone to another without having to worry about transfering my photos or storing them away in external hard disks for them to never be seen again. Another reason was the features set on Android, but now both the eco-systems seem to somewhat have feature parity.
I was/am by no means an anti-Apple guy because anytime someone asked me for a suggestion for a phone my default answer was always Apple iPhone. Because if you are looking for the best experience then hands down Apple delivers it.
Enter my first Iphone, the 13 Pro!
My first iPhone and I haven’t been as excited as this in a while now for getting a new phone and using it. Ok I lied, I was this excited when I got my iPad Mini but you get my point and it wasn’t a phone.
I am in love with iOS. It is absolutely awesome and well thought out. I don’t know why I have been denying myself of this experience for so long. The camera is amazing, in the few days that I have been taking pictures with it I have already started to give selling my DSLR a serious thought.I aboslutely love the potrait mode. If they said I had to pay Apple extra money to get potrait mode I would because that is how much I like taking pictures with the potrait mode on.
IOS ships with some default apps like notes, reminder, mail3,..etc and I actually love how every one of those apps are actually great for their intended purposes. I actually find a good use for them and in the short time they have become an indespensable part of my iPhone usage. I can’t really say that there is an app that I want to delete right off the bat(maybe Garage band, also becuase I haven’t actually used it). And the reason I say this is because on my Samsung S20 it came loaded with a bunch of apps that till date I couldn’t remove and also had no use for.
I like iPhone 13’s design. To me I don’t like thin or thick phone and for that reason I wasn’t a big fan of Samsung S20. And coming from that phone, even though iPhone is thick, I actually find its thickness and weight comfortable. And I certainly appreciate not having the curved display. I like iPhone’s flat out screen. Speaking of which the screen is also amazing. It is a treat to look at.
I was debating between getting the iPhone 13 mini and iPhone 13 pro. If you read my review of the iPad mini, you would know that I like smaller screens. I love the form factor of iPhone mini but the absence of the telephoto camera was a deal breaker for me. Since I am into photography. And for the same reason I opted for the 256GB model. Hopefully that much space lasts me for 2 years 4.
Since I used the biometric on my iPad mini I was skeptical about face ID. And I am happily surprised at how good face ID is. It works in dark, and it is blazing fast. I have had my biometric fail me on S20(because of the angle and where I have to place my finger on the screen) and till now not once has the face id failed me. And the speed at which it detects my face has really blown me away.
All in all I think for the foreseeable future I don’t see myself leaving Apple and iPhone camp.
Watch series 7
Since my switch to iPad mini, I decided to go all in on the Apple ecosystem. At this point I am just Apple high. So, it goes without saying that I am enjoying the Apple watch.
I had used LG watch, Samsung gear s2, Gear S3 and Apple watch is just way way ahead of the in terms of experience and functionality. The notifications are actually readable. I am able to view the entire mail and not just the subject or a line or 2 that is shown on the Android watches that I have used.
This is huge because I gave up on Android watches because 1. the experience was subpar 2. despite the subpar experience I wanted to see notifications and was disappointed to learn that I can’t read the entirety of the message. I could only see subject and title of email on the notification. Notifications weren’t wholesome.
But in Apple watch I can read the entire mail. That in itself for is a win in my books for getting the Watch.
And it also has the fitness sensors which means it also replaces my fit charge 4 now!
The onscreen keyboard is actually useable to reply to messages which I am digging a lot. And if typing/swiping on the small keyboard isn’t your thing, voice dictation in my limited usage hasn’t failed even once so far.
There is a fun walkie talkie app which is pretty fun and was useful to my surprise. The way I currently use it is, instead of shouting at my wife who is in another room, we now use this to keep our voices low :)
Lifting the hand action to summon siri on watch is also really useful. Although I feel this needs more tuning in the sense that I am able to summon siri only 7 out of 10 times. I am guessing it has to do with my hand/wrist action but I would have liked it if it worked without me trying to figure out which hand/wrist action makes the siri appear on the watch. But when it does work it is useful for my usecases which has mostly been checking my calendar, reminders,and starting workouts.
Siri is Good.
Siri is good. And this is in terms of just calling upon the voice assistant. Calling upon Siri has been more successful than the times that I tried calling upon Google’s voice assistant on my S20 and failed. But I think this is where my confidence index for using voice assistant lies. If I can consistently call upon the voice assistant my confidence increases in using voice assitants. Knowing that I 9/10 times Siri would work for me has increased my confidence in using Siri(voice assistant) for some of my tasks. And that in itself is surprising because I found myself frustrated trying to call “hey Google” is so many voice modulations, and tones. That I had given up on voice assistants. I rather just type it than even attempt using the voice assistant. But that has completely changed from the time I started using Siri.
I haven’t had a chance to test out how well it is able to get capture my accent and regional words but in my limited time of using it I am quite happy to use Siri.
Mindset changed or I have grown older
Remember, how I said I didn’t like the idea of eco-system lock-in. Well now my mindset is I want be eco-system locked-in. Because I have seen how being in the Apple ecosystem makes so many things easy. My notes, reminders, calendar, passwords are all synced across all my devices iPhone, iPad. I connected my air pods pro5 on my iPhone and they just work on my iPad. I didn’t need to reconnect or do anything. With continuity I continue stuff I left off on device while using the another. Air drop is another feature that I haven’t seen anything like it outside of the Apple ecosystem. It makes transfering files painfree and fast.
Needless to say I have now officially become an Apple fan boy.
Thanks to the purchase of iPadMini.↩︎
This is no longer accurate because all the flagship phones out there seem to be on the same price range. But it was so during the early day of Android↩︎
recently got into using mail app to aggregate all the emails in one place and Mail app is just amazing. More so on the iPad Mini.↩︎
2 years is my typical phone upgrade cycle.↩︎
Will do a review post on the Airpods pro soonish.↩︎