Switching From iPhone to Android: 10 Factors to Consider First

1 - Switching From iPhone to Android: 10 Factors to Consider First
2 - What's the Right Replacement?
3 - There Is an Android Learning Curve
4 - What Software Version Is the Handset Running?
5 - What Your Carrier Has to Say
6 - Android Devices Aren't Winning on Price
7 - How Heavily Invested in Apple Services Are You?
8 - What Software Makes You Most Comfortable?
9 - Think More About Security
10 - Check Google Play First
11 - How Invested Are You in Other Apple Products?
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Switching From iPhone to Android: 10 Factors to Consider First

by Don Reisinger

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What's the Right Replacement?

Those who are ready to invest in Android have a long slog of research to complete before making a decision. There are countless Android devices on store shelves, and as Schmidt himself noted, many of them are quite good. Expect to perform copious amounts of research to find the right Android replacement.

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There Is an Android Learning Curve

Eric Schmidt made it seem in his update that the learning curve going from iOS to Android wouldn't be so bad. But there is definitely a learning curve, and depending on the person's experience with mobile devices, it could be quite steep. Android boasts several features that iOS users aren't accustomed to, and its design, while similar, is different enough to make it somewhat confusing for some users at first blush. How steep the learning curve turns out to be is up for individuals to decide, but expect to not feel at home right away on Android after coming off iOS.

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What Software Version Is the Handset Running?

Although Google has done a better job handling Android's fragmentation, several versions of the OS are still floating around, depending on the device users buy. The smart move would be to go with a device running Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) or Android 4.4 (KitKat).

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What Your Carrier Has to Say

Carriers play a crucial role in the ability for a person to switch from iOS to Android. For one thing, consumers need to determine whether they're eligible to get a new device for the two-year-contract discounted rates. In addition, not all carriers carry the latest and greatest Android handsets, which might prompt some folks to go elsewhere to get the device they desire. Do some research on carriers.

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Android Devices Aren't Winning on Price

There's no debating that, as a whole, consumers can find cheap Android devices on any carrier network. However, to say that Android is winning on price just isn't fair. After all, Apple's iPhone 4S is available free with a two-year contract, and the company's iPhone 5C sets customers back $100. The iPhone 5S starts at $200 with a two-year agreement. Apple is now offering products that run the price gamut, helping it to stack up nicely with Android handsets.

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How Heavily Invested in Apple Services Are You?

Despite Schmidt's claims to the contrary, jumping from Apple services to those from Google isn't so simple. Customers that are heavily invested in Apple services, like iTunes, iBooks and iWork, might find it difficult to switch to Android. Granted, Google has its own suite of services that provide the same offerings, but Apple loves its proprietary formats.

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What Software Makes You Most Comfortable?

Consumers need to decide what vendor's version of Android they like best. Do they love the simple elegance of Samsung's Android overlay TouchWiz, or do they prefer something a bit more pure like the standard Android build running on Nexus devices? It's no easy decision, especially for those who have been locked in to iOS for so long.

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Think More About Security

Depending on the study one reads, mobile malware is targeting Android anywhere from 79 percent of the time to a whopping 99 percent of the time. Regardless, consumers must be aware that Android takes on more security risks than iOS. People around the globe are using the platform in droves, and malware creators are taking advantage. Be aware of the security issues that could arise with using Android.

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Check Google Play First

Folks who have been using iOS for a long time undoubtedly have applications that they love to use. So, before switching to Android, they should head over to Google's Play marketplace online and check to make sure their programs are readily available in that store. If so, make the move. If not, try to find a suitable replacement.

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How Invested Are You in Other Apple Products?

Apple's strategy has always been to get people to buy its products and keep them locked in by making it easy to share data and information between its platforms. That's why AirDrop was integrated into iOS 7 and now makes it easy to transfer files between OS X and iOS. It's also why those who own iPads and iPhones tend to pick up Macs at some point, and why those looking to switch to Android must determine how their investment in Apple products might go over the years. Many products can work with Apple devices, but the company's own products work best.

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