Mobile OSs If you could start over and only pick one ecosystem...

mjschabow

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Dec 25, 2013
2,668
2,229
...to carry you through the next 5-6 years, would you choose Apple or Google.


For me, it's tough to think about moving away from Apple's ecosystem. My whole family has iPhones, my girlfriend has an iPhone, all of my coworkers have iPhones, so iMessage is a big plus. I have over 200 movies purchased on iTunes that I'm pretty sure I can't play on any other non-Apple device (Movies Anywhere kind of works but doesn't include every movie I've purchased).

But, starting over, it would be a tough choice. I get the privacy concerns with Google, but I like their maps and assistant features much better than Apple's. Plus I love what the Pixels are doing with their cameras.

Anywho, thought this could be a neato discussion so discuss away.
 

StaceyMJ86

macrumors 68000
Sep 22, 2015
1,799
1,420
Washington, DC
Me personally I would stick with Apple. From 2008 - September 2011, I used various Android devices. Once the 4S launched I purchased that and have been with Apple since. I now have the X and could never imagine using another operating system. The only thing that could get me to change is if Apple were to shut down tomorrow and stopped releasing updates and supporting Apple products, I would have no choice but to choose another operating system.

80% of my immediate family have iPhones, macs and iPads. Everyone in my household is using Apple products except for our jailbroken firesticks. That will all change once Apple released an updated Apple TV.
 

StaceyMJ86

macrumors 68000
Sep 22, 2015
1,799
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Washington, DC
There's no such thing. Amazon Fire TV devices run Android which can sideload apps. You don't need to jailbreak like you do on iOS devices.

This thread is already starting out to be a low level repeat of misinformation.
Mine is jailbroken for the free movies and has been since 2017, when I purchased my 2. How can it already be a low level of misinformation when only 2 people have responded? You’re definitely blocked now because I don’t have time for your snarky remarks!
 
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mi7chy

macrumors 603
Oct 24, 2014
5,988
6,956
Mine is jailbroken for the free movies and has been since 2017, when I purchased my 2. How can it already be a low level of misinformation when only 4 people have responded? You’re definitely blocked now because I don’t have time for your snarky remarks!
You paid for the false advertising when you could've easily done it yourself which takes a few minutes at most.

1. Turn on 'apps from unknown sources' in developer options.
2. Use AFTVNews Downloader app from Amazon store to download and sideload those free streaming apps.
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N0BP507

No need to jailbreak to do that and I was referring to quality not quantity.
 
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slitherjef

macrumors 65816
Feb 8, 2012
1,013
814
Earth
If I could have one ecosystem "to rule them all" I would chose Linux and actually started to try, but given the issues I have had with Linux for my real world usage, umm... Probably stick with what I have, Android with a side order of windows for computer needs.
 

sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,372
8,750
Prescott Valley, AZ
...to carry you through the next 5-6 years, would you choose Apple or Google.


For me, it's tough to think about moving away from Apple's ecosystem. My whole family has iPhones, my girlfriend has an iPhone, all of my coworkers have iPhones, so iMessage is a big plus. I have over 200 movies purchased on iTunes that I'm pretty sure I can't play on any other non-Apple device (Movies Anywhere kind of works but doesn't include every movie I've purchased).

But, starting over, it would be a tough choice. I get the privacy concerns with Google, but I like their maps and assistant features much better than Apple's. Plus I love what the Pixels are doing with their cameras.

Anywho, thought this could be a neato discussion so discuss away.
I think that there is a disconnect between the thread title and your first sentence. "Starting over" and "carry you through for the next 5-6 years" only line up if someone just started in an ecosystem this year.

I'll address each separately...

If I could do it all over again, I'd do nearly exactly what I did. I started out with Apple products 11-12 years ago and used just enough of the ecosystem that made sense. I never went all in because Apple's "happy path" didn't completely serve my needs. As their products drifted further away from my needs, when it came time to replace an existing device/component, it was with a non-Apple product.

Now, to carry me through for the 5-6 years, I'm moving further toward Google's ecosystem. As their offerings mature, they're getting CLOSER to meeting my needs. If Apple doesn't change direction, and Google continues along their current direction, I can see being nearly completely in the Google ecosystem and out of Apple's.


80% of my immediate family have iPhones, macs and iPads. Everyone in my household is using Apple products except for our jailbroken firesticks. That will all change once Apple released an updated Apple TV.
We love our Fire TV devices! They're an integral part of our cord-cutting arsenal. But I can't see myself going back to an Apple TV because it will never be as open as the Fire TV is.
 
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AustinIllini

macrumors demi-goddess
Oct 20, 2011
11,022
7,624
Austin, TX
I think that there is a disconnect between the thread title and your first sentence. "Starting over" and "carry you through for the next 5-6 years" only line up if someone just started in an ecosystem this year.

I'll address each separately...

If I could do it all over again, I'd do nearly exactly what I did. I started out with Apple products 11-12 years ago and used just enough of the ecosystem that made sense. I never went all in because Apple's "happy path" didn't completely serve my needs. As their products drifted further away from my needs, when it came time to replace an existing device/component, it was with a non-Apple product.

Now, to carry me through for the 5-6 years, I'm moving further toward Google's ecosystem. As their offerings mature, they're getting CLOSER to meeting my needs. If Apple doesn't change direction, and Google continues along their current direction, I can see being nearly completely in the Google ecosystem and out of Apple's.
Nailed it. It's a tale of two decades for me. In the 2000s, Apple made hardware/software interaction their bread and butter and that was what the market needed at the time. This carried on to iPhone, which was the dominant phone in my workflow. It worked seamlessly with my Mac and iPad.

Then a combination of things happened. The first thing was in 2008ish when Google came out with Gmail. From that point forward, Apple has never caught up with services.

It seemed to happen one at a time: iCloud, Maps, Siri...all substandard services downright failing. The timing couldn't have been worse as phones began to become vessels for software and services. Apple has failed to truly differentiate themselves, inflated prices to a ridiculous premium, all while letting their computer lines stagnate. For these reasons, today I would likely stay with the Google ecosystem.
 

SteveJUAE

macrumors 68030
Aug 14, 2015
2,789
2,492
Land of Smiles
...to carry you through the next 5-6 years, would you choose Apple or Google.


For me, it's tough to think about moving away from Apple's ecosystem. My whole family has iPhones, my girlfriend has an iPhone, all of my coworkers have iPhones, so iMessage is a big plus. I have over 200 movies purchased on iTunes that I'm pretty sure I can't play on any other non-Apple device (Movies Anywhere kind of works but doesn't include every movie I've purchased).

But, starting over, it would be a tough choice. I get the privacy concerns with Google, but I like their maps and assistant features much better than Apple's. Plus I love what the Pixels are doing with their cameras.

Anywho, thought this could be a neato discussion so discuss away.
Hows it tough do you have that many groups and you probably already pay for unlimited sms/mms so no difference there and when the new standard kicks in where is imessage then. Heavens forbid should you wish to talk to others around the world etc :)

As for your movies why not do what any one does who has legacy collections like VHS and CD's keep an old device or buy a 2nd hand one for those odd rainy Sunday afternoons when you feel like looking at them. The typical price difference of flagship devices quickly diminishes your outlay,

The so called privacy issues is a wash for the average guy and more of a technicality than anything else

It's like how many times do you need to be kicked in the wallet till you say enough Apples ECO costs $ and largely for trivia conveniences

Choose your poison as you wish but opt for neutral/cross platform services is the best policy IMO
 
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shelt

macrumors member
Apr 12, 2007
73
56
NorCal
Google all the way. It's all about quality of services, choice, and cross-platform compatibility. I'm over the privacy issues. I use gmail at work and home. I use (nicely synced) Chrome across MacOS, Win10, Android and iOS. I use the google productivity apps, which are great. I use google photos as a backup and sharing mechanism. I use google contacts and calendars. I use Dropbox for document management. EDIT: As reminded by another below, I also use free Google Music to match my 24,000 track library for streaming across all platforms.

I was a huge Apple fanboy; I still love MacOS, but the stagnation on the computer side, and insistence on form over function across product lines drove me away. I love Apple's approach to hardware and software integration - it's what sets them apart. I love the (near monopolistic) power they have to get their way with wireless providers.

But...I HATE the walled garden and constant nickel and dimeing. You want to set default apps in iOS? - sorry, we know what's best for you, and it will likely involve subscriptions now. Oh, you want to charge your new $1500 phone with your new $4000 Macbook Pro? - you'll need another $30 cable. You want to use your $4000 laptop with a projector, you'll need a $40 dongle. Want to import photos? buy another dongle. Want to charge your new $1500 phone at its design rate? - You'll need to by a $30 wall charger (and likely another cable...). Want a touchbar on your MBP? No? Well, you're buying one anyway for $250 and it's amazing! Not to mention the fragile MBP keyboards...

I really dislike actions aimed at trapping their customers. Try moving to Android and continuing any of your old group iMessage chats. Even after you deregister iMessage everywhere, your friends think they have messaged you on Android via SMS because there is no error in iMessage - that's Apple's flip-off to you on the way out. After they got sued over this, they fixed the de-registration process for one to one chats, but continue to inflict pain on people who leave through group chats. They could have fixed this many years ago, but it adds stickiness to their ecosystem.

I guess what I want is the hardware from an iPhone XS running optimized Android and Google Camera. And I want A MBP running MacOS with Dell XPS 15 ports and durability, along with its 4K touchscreen. And, a real desktop workstation for home, not a mini with no graphics or a 5 year old "new" Mac Pro. I guess that's why I have a Pixel phone, an XPS15, and a hackintosh for my main computing needs. I always thought I'd be a 100% Apple customer but unfortunately this is where I am now...
 
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LIVEFRMNYC

macrumors 604
Oct 27, 2009
7,440
8,625
What I love about the Apple ecosystem is the seamless continuity across their devices/OS.

But I would still choose Google. I'm a daily Chrome, Gmail, Drive, Photos, and Voice user. And I used to be a daily Google Music user until I switched to Spotify. I sync my contacts and calendar on my Google account. I also love being able to sync and toggle between multiple Google accounts. Most(or all) of Google's services are browser friendly if needed.
 
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sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,372
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Prescott Valley, AZ
Google all the way. It's all about quality of services, choice, and cross-platform compatibility. I'm over the privacy issues. I use gmail at work and home. I use (nicely synced) Chrome across MacOS, Win10, Android and iOS. I use the google productivity apps, which are great. I use google photos as a backup and sharing mechanism. I use google contacts and calendars. I use Dropbox for document management.
You nailed it. My experiences with Google software and services has been pretty terrific. A key part of that is the cross-platform capabilities. I use the same software and services on Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, iOS, and Chrome OS. A ton of quality hardware choices at decent prices.

Gmail, Google Docs (unlimited space for native files), Google Photos, Google Play Music (free cloud access to 50,000 of my own tracks), Google Home Mini, Chromecast, Android phone. It's just about all hardware agnostic.


I was a huge Apple fanboy, I still love MacOS, but the stagnation on the computer side, and insistence on form over function across product lines drove me away. I love Apple's approach to hardware and software integration - it's what sets them apart. I love the (near monopolistic) power they have to get their way with wireless providers.

But...I HATE the walled garden and constant nickel and dimeing. You want to set default apps in iOS? - sorry, we know what's best for you, and it will likely involve subscriptions now. Oh, you want to charge your new $1500 phone with your new $4000 Macbook Pro? - you'll need another $30 cable. You want to use your $4000 laptop with a projector, you'll need a $40 dongle. Want to import photos? buy another dongle. Want to charge your new $1500 phone at its design rate? - You'll need to by a $30 wall charger. Want a touchbar on your MBP? No? Well, you're buying one anyway for $250 and it's amazing! Not to mention the fragile MBP keyboards...

I really dislike actions aimed at trapping their customers. Try moving to Android and continuing any of your old group iMessage chats. Even after you deregister iMessage everywhere, your friends think they have messaged you on Android via SMS because there is no error in iMessage - that's Apples flip-off to you on the way out. After they got sued over this, they fixed the de-registration process for one to one chats, but continue to inflict pain on people who leave through group chats. They could have fixed this many years ago, but it adds stickiness to their ecosystem.

I guess what I want is the hardware from an iPhone XS running optimized Android and Google Camera. And I want A MBP running MacOS with Dell XPS 15 ports and durability, along with its 4K touchscreen. And, a real desktop workstation for home, not a mini with no graphics or a 5 year old "new" Mac Pro. I guess that's why I have a Pixel phone, an XPS15, and a hackintosh for my main computing needs. I always thought I'd be a 100% Apple customer but unfortunately this is where I am now...
Wow, you perfectly nailed it here too. It's basically the gadget version of the frog in the boiling water.
 

GrumpyMom

macrumors G3
Sep 11, 2014
8,362
11,558
They’re all bonkers and run by egomaniacal weirdos in high places. I can’t pick one of anything. I’ve got commitment issues. I’m going to keep on mixing it up. Use both. It’s always good to have system redundancy especially if either one of them, Apple or Google ever decides to ban me for some reason or one of my accounts gets irretrievably borked. I’ve got backups on Amazon and Samsung servers as well.

Eff all of them. None of them have earned my trust or loyalty or even my esteem in particular. They all do something astonishingly annoying or stupid. I use whatever is convenient or least annoying to me at any given point in time.
 

sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,372
8,750
Prescott Valley, AZ
Well if I could start again I wouldn’t have gone so deep into the Apple ecosystem making it hard to leave. For now I’ll just carry on with mostly Apple devices but add in non Apple devices here and there.
You don't HAVE to be a prisoner unless you want to. :)

If you want to have a bit more freedom, the first step is to begin a slow but steady transition to cross-platform software and services.

Going hardware-first (as it sounds like you're doing) is more difficult... because if you're still entrenched in Apple-only software, like iWork, then going non-Apple hardware is incredibly difficult. But if you slowly move from iWork to something like Google Docs (which is cross platform), then swapping hardware (under the covers) is far easier.

Here's an example (not advocating that you do the same thing, but it gives a "template")
I've got all of the Google apps installed on my 2018 iPad alongside iWork and other Apple-exclusive apps. That allows me to use non-Apple apps in an incremental manner.

After a year of transitioning, for all intents and purposes, my 2018 iPad is a Chrome OS tablet. Obviously it isn't running Chrome OS, and the apps don't exactly have identical functionality, but the bulk of the apps that I use on my chromebooks, I can use on my iPad.

I've set a goal for myself (and my wife) as to where we're going to land post-Apple... Linux desktop and laptops (I've already got some great distros working, one that I can drop on a laptop for my wife to replace her 13" MBA and she would feel right at home with) and ChromeOS for tablets. We're not there yet, because ChromeOS has a ways to go before it can fully replace iOS for us.

All that to say, work on transitioning software and services first... and let the hardware follow.
 

1050792

macrumors Demi-God
Oct 2, 2016
2,517
3,933
Google because I don't use Apple's ecosystem including their services.
[doublepost=1548441371][/doublepost]
What I love about the Apple ecosystem is the seamless continuity across their devices/OS.

But I would still choose Google. I'm a daily Chrome, Gmail, Drive, Photos, and Voice user. And I used to be a daily Google Music user until I switched to Spotify. I sync my contacts and calendar on my Google account. I also love being able to sync and toggle between multiple Google accounts. Most(or all) of Google's services are browser friendly if needed.
You mean the non seamless continuity across devices? I had many times in which my Mac didn't recognize my iPhone for AirDrop transfering, oh and those times in which Handoff wouldn't work and I had to start troubleshoot like turning off bluetooth, deleting bluetooth caches, restarting both devices, signing out of iCloud... You can see many of these reports all over the place either here and on official Apple forums. I guess it's not so seamless at all.
 
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LIVEFRMNYC

macrumors 604
Oct 27, 2009
7,440
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You mean the non seamless continuity across devices? I had many times in which my Mac didn't recognize my iPhone for AirDrop transfering, oh and those times in which Handoff wouldn't work and I had to start troubleshoot like turning off bluetooth, deleting bluetooth caches, restarting both devices, signing out of iCloud... You can see many of these reports all over the place either here and on official Apple forums. I guess it's not so seamless at all.
Well yes, Handoff can be sketchy at times but I barely use it, and I don't use Airdrop that often so I never had any issues with it.

Messaging and receiving calls has always been top notch across my Apple devices. This is my main reason for liking Apple's continuity.
 
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iSheep5S

macrumors 6502a
Jun 4, 2013
548
248
Scotland
Android. I’m glad I’ve been along for the ride hopping back and forth. Apple has stayed steady give them their due. Android has been terrible to pretty much on par.

Guess that’s the difference between moseying along and actually innovating.

It feels like an Android phone is my device while I borrow an Apple device from parent Apple with restrictions.

Finally when Apple phones break the 2k mark in 6 years or less I’ll pass. :)

Tablets? Android has a bit, a big bit to go.
 

sunapple

macrumors 68000
Jul 16, 2013
1,881
2,762
The Netherlands
I kinda loved how iPhone OS 3 back in the day was nothing more than a page with icons, just going in and out of an app all the time and that was all it was. People talk about boredom or stagnation when I just see me trusty OS that still works the same and learned a few new neat tricks. Sure, there’s things that I’d like to be different but is any other platform 100% perfect? Or 90%? 80%?I wouldn’t switch just for the heck of it. macOS is the same story.

So what would I choose if I could start over? It wouldn’t be impossible actually. Even if I completely forgot my past experiences with Apple and started new?

Google does offer a strong suit of software tools and services. Microsoft has Windows which really is the only alternative for macOS. The hardware is cheaper, the choices are endless... Still, I’m into product design. I sometimes choose form over function. I love Apple’s underdog and quirky history. There’s a portrait of Jony Ive in every room of.. wait.
 

ImAnAgent

Suspended
Oct 11, 2018
273
210
My mind
I would probably pick Apple. I always have numerous phones and several of them are iPhones and several are Samsung phones.

I like the way I can get things synced up between iPhones without having to do anything special and I love being able to use iTunes to back up my phone and sync my music and podcasts to my phone.

I've also been using Android phones since the Nexus 4 in 2013 or so and since then. I've been buying each years Note and S series phones as well as the latest iPhone.

This year though, I think it's time to skip Android and just keep using my iPhones and Note 9 and S9+.

I also got my first cellphone back in 1993 when there was no such thing as Android and Apple iPhones so phones were just actual phones back then and that didn't start chasing till the early 2000s.
 

pika2000

macrumors 603
Jun 22, 2007
5,475
4,747
Apple.
With Apple, I can still use Google services just fine. Best of both worlds.

With Google, I automatically exclude myself from many services from Apple.