The End or the Beginning of the Platform Wars?

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by Visionblue, Jul 9, 2014.

  1. Visionblue macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    #1
    With the recent updates to iOS and Android I've read a lot of articles about walls closing in between ecosystems; like this one from the Verge.

    But in my opinion, the wall is coming down in a way. With so many great 3rd party apps coming out in the last few years & the open nature in which iOS and Android are headed it seems even easier now to wander outside of your comfort zone.

    I've recently found myself very excited about Android L. Before I had an iPhone I was pretty into Android. I liked the openness of it. I was an early adopter and eventually began to feel like I was dealing with lower-quality phones, buggy software and a visually displeasing UI. I gave up around the time ICS came out and my brand new phone was left behind without a way to update.

    I have been using an iPhone & other Apple products since because I like the way things 'just work' with it. Especially among friends with iMessage, AirDrop, facetime, etc. There's a sense of connection there.

    But let's face it; many stock apps on both platforms leaving something to be desired. Apps like evernote, spotify and others have taken those basic concepts and run with them and have worked their ways into our daily lives. I don't feel like this will change anytime soon; in fact I believe sometime in the next few years both platforms (Apple has a LOT further to go) may even embrace this and begin to focus less on in-house curation and focus more on good hardware and a great overall user experience.

    So this made me wonder about the people who don't pick a side & have chosen the best of both worlds; how do you keep your information synced across platforms? Do you feel like you are 'missing out' on ecosystem-exclusive content like iMessage, continuity, google fit, default apps, airplay, etc? Or have you found a happy way to do these things across devices?
     
  2. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2011
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #2
    Depends on how deep into the ecosystem you go.

    First of all, if you go Android, most of the Google services go over to iOS seamlessly. iOS is great, but it is certainly a walled garden. That is, if you use Google music, you can (i think?) install it on iPhone, but if you use iTunes Match and want to try Android, the syncing process is near impossible or prohibitively time and hard drive consuming.

    Add to that the level of integration in iOS is somewhat limited. Android allows you to set defaults for every service.

    That being said, I have an iPad and I use it as Apple intended and I'm quite happy with it.
     
  3. Fernandez21 macrumors 601

    Fernandez21

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2010
    #3
    For cross platform stuff, I use mostly google. I have my contacts and Calender's on google, I use Dropbox for pictures and files, evernote for notes, pocket casts for podcasts, netflix and hulu for most of my video needs, and isyncr to sync my music on iTunes to my android phone.

    I also use my iPhone as my work phone and try to keep that separate from my personal stuff, so the fact that some of those things are walled off really don't affect me.
     
  4. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #4
    Last year when I switched from an iPhone 4s to a HTC One, I discovered how much of a pain in the ass Apple makes it. Fortunately, Google has a utility to transfer the music out of your iTunes library and upload it. I've been using Google music since then, even though I switched back to the iPhone when the 5s was released(I wanted the Nexus 5, but it wasn't available when I needed to buy.)

    But I certainly prefer cross platform apps and services that I can use on both iOS and Android(or even Windows Phone, if it ever gets enough apps) to anything that locks me in to a single device or manufacturer.
     
  5. AustinIllini macrumors demi-god

    AustinIllini

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2011
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #5
    I'm open to anyone who has a method to transfer iTunes Match to Google Music. I still haven't quite figured it out.

    Still weighing Android or iOS honestly
     
  6. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #6
    Sorry, I missed the match part of iTunes match. When I transferred my music to Google, I used an old backup I created prior to subscribing to iTunes match. I did this because the songs that were matched were often different than the originals. iTunes match just wasn't a good choice for me. :eek:
     
  7. Visionblue thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    #7
    I've just recently created a Google Play Music account and uploaded my iTunes library. I feel that its an awesome concept and a great web browser app but the iOS version is severely buggy and lags. I assume, of course, that the android version is much more stable.
     
  8. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604

    thejadedmonkey

    Joined:
    May 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pa
    #8
    Windows Phone has iCloud integration. It's missing first party apps for Google and Apple services, but for such a small marketshare it's surprisingly cross-platform.
     
  9. jrswizzle, Jul 10, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2014

    jrswizzle macrumors 603

    jrswizzle

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2012
    Location:
    McKinney, TX
    #9
    Simply upload your music files to Google Music - set it to pull directly from your iTunes library and make sure your library is kept tidy. Set your central iTunes location (where all your files are stored - I use my iMac) to automatically download anything you purchase from iTunes and voila.

    When I had my Android phones, I could buy a song on my iPhone and iPad and it would show up in my Google Music library on my Nexus 5 or HTC One in a matter of minutes. Not QUITE as immediate as being in the same ecosystem, but I was quite pleased with how well it worked.

    And after it was set up I never touched it. Still have all my music stored in both iTunes Match and Google Music in case I ever go the Android route again.

    In fact, I plan on doing the same with Amazon Music as I have a Kindle Fire 7" HDX and Fire TV :)

    I have a gadget problem....
     
  10. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #10
    I haven't had any issues with either the iOS or Android versions. What kinds of bugs are you seeing? I really like the app.
     
  11. Visionblue thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2013
    #11

    For instance; if I start a playlist or album and skip a song, the album artwork and title changes on my lock screen, but it continues to play the previous track for about 30sec-1min. It also pauses and restarts and sometimes when I pause a track and exit the app, the song will start playing without warning a few minutes later.

    It really all seems to be related to buffering. I live on a small island where all forms of internet are only considered fast by last decade's standards. But still, I don't have those problems on pandora or spotify.
     
  12. Savor Suspended

    Savor

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    #12
    Both ecosystems are mature enough that the next question is now based on hardware. Software always can be improved by the user or OEM.

    Even the hardware improvements isnt quite as huge as before. It was like in video game console wars. I saw considerable leaps from NES to SNES to PS1/N64 to PS2. After PS2 to PS3 and now PS3 to PS4, the gaps are generally smaller graphically.

    We will hit an era where the specs are comfortable enough for most users in all price brackets. Like 2012 flagship specs with quad core and HD screen should become standard by 2016 for phones under $100. Benchmark scores is for tech geeks to have bragging rights and who enjoy getting into fanboy wars. Most phones hitting 17000 AnTuTu like a Moto G should be good enough to use for half a decade and should cover most users' needs but tech enthusiasts love change.
     
  13. JaySoul macrumors 68020

    JaySoul

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    #13
    Where possible (90% of the time) I remain platform agnostic and try to use apps that are available and well-supported on both iOS and Android.

    Tbh both of them will basically do all the same things in 3 years time, so it's more about the apps/services and I don't want to be too tied in.
     
  14. daveathall, Jul 18, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2014

    daveathall macrumors 68000

    daveathall

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    Location:
    North Yorkshire
    #14
    I have a Galaxy S5 and a Nexus 5 for phones, I also have a MBP and iPad mini, TBH, I don't need them all to sync, but they do anyway. I have a Google account and most things are synced as a matter of course (e mail, contacts and calendar, I use calengoo for the latter).

    I manually transferred my iTunes across to Google music but again, TBH there was no need too, I have a 64GB card in my phone so loads of my most listened too music is put on there.

    As for photos I use photo bucket which automatically uploads my photos to my account.

    Apps? The main one's that I use are perfectly synced (Sonos, 1Password4, Dropbox, Chrome, Jawbone, Kindle, Google Drive etc).

    I will let all into a secret here, my Android phones and my Apple products just work, against popular opinion on this board, "just working" isn't exclusive to Apple.
     
  15. mrex, Jul 18, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2014

    mrex macrumors 68020

    mrex

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2014
    Location:
    europe
    #15
    MBPr, iPad Air, Note 10.1 (yes it is my phone too), Sony Smartwatch 2, TF300T, Zenbook, Minix Neo X8-h. All does what I want (except iPad Air). I used to use Dropbox but deleted my account. Google Drive/account releated stuff is much better. Sync my calender and stuff easily.

    Android is working well. There is only one slight problem I have faced. TRIM in Android 4.1./Galaxy Note 10.1 (2012) isnt working as it should. I hope Kitkat will fix it. Anyway... I feel that the only problem with Android (actually with a manufacturer) is that if it is not Nexus, you need to wait OS updates if even offered. Im abit disappointed because I bought a Samsung flagship (2012) and Samsung hasnt offered OS updates to Android 4.2 or 4.3. Now, finally, they have made Kitkat - but it seems to be made in hurry for Note 10.1. Should I even think about OS updates if everything is working well? Yes and no. Within the past years apps and smart accessories have developed fast. Some apps I need dont work without higher API and I need an OS update for that. Im not unhappy with Android, im unhappy with Samsung and the way they treat their customers. You cant even rely on gettting updates just by buying their flagship. Am I going to buy another Samsung thing? Probably not if I can find similar products.

    Both Zenbook (win8.1) and MBPr (maverick) are good. I havent faced that typical problem in windows with my Zenbook that after some time the system (windows) becomes slower and slower and you need to do a factory reset to get it back to work again. That is gone. I used to install win7 (xp) once a year in the past. Well I actually liked it, but I know most people dont. My Zenbook is still working in the same way as it was in the beginning. That is great! I dont have time to fix things nowadays. Everything must work as I want.

    I just found out that I can even mirror my MBPr screen to a tv through Minix Android box =) I thought it was only possible with iOS, but no, it works with OSX too. That is awesome if I ever need a screen mirroring (from MBPr). This is the thing I like in Android. I can use many devices (win/ios/osx/android) with Minix (android).

    iPad Air is a huge question mark for me. Im selling it and probably someone is coming to pick it soon (maybe today). My Note 10.1 doesnt crash or get memory low warnings etc. But my iPad Air does that and way too often - even my TF300T isnt that bad. The last time with iPad Air was enough for me- I lost my work couple days ago. It was so close I didnt throw it to a wall.. Im thinking to get Surface pro 3 (i7 model) if they have fixed some problems it had. And yes Im still consider to get iPad Air 2 - but it all depends on specs. I can live only with Note 10.1 too, if Surface Pro 3 isnt good enough to be bought and there is no significant improvements done to iPad Air 2.With a mouse and a keyboard I can do most things by Note 10.1 and especially because it has a great working SPen. And I do love the multiwindow option! But I still prefer doing my things by a real laptop.

    - Android manufacturers should provide updates better than they do nowadays. Althought you dont buy an OS and an option to get OS updates when buying a device, but they still should provide some options to get OS updates. This is the most annoying thing with Android. Most high-end devices have a price tag which mean premium. So they should have premium support for them too. Apple does this better.
    - Apple should improve iOS - it just feels so last season. It definitely needs a multiwindow option, better pencil support... It is a year 2014 though!

    I dont buy stuff to build an ecosystem around me. I have spent some money for apps, but it is ok if I loose them when changing my devices. Im not thinking that im bound to Appstore or Playstore because I have bought apps. Who knows what I have after five years - Im using these apps now. But I mostly buy devices that works widely. For me it is important that devices work together and they arent restricted to work only with XXX. Some devices dont have this option but it is much better nowadays.
     

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