Gone are the times where Android was barely usable and iOS was clearly better. And iOS 7 is not about to change that. If you are an iOS user and think about switching, here are my thoughts:
That’s what you will be missing most:
iMessage and FaceTime. They are good and seamless. I bet even your parents use them. Don’t expect them to convert to a multi-platform solution like WhatsApp, Hangout or Facebook Messenger.
Photo Stream. Specially if you’re a Mac User with iPhoto - automatic syncing of your pics with Photo Stream is just convenient. Photo managing at all is much better on iOS - even local albums are a mess under Android as the gallery app tries to integrate with google+ and picasa and even savvy users aren’t sure where their pictures are actually stored.
Airplay. While there are solutions for Android - none of them will be as comfortable as you are used to. Say good bye to just beaming some music to your speakers or the contents of your phone’s display to the big screen tv.
There are some little things that are just better on iOS than on Android: While my HP OfficeJet 6500 is AirPrint and Google Cloud Print enabled, it is much easier to print things from the iPhone than from Android devices.
That are the things you will get:
Full homescreen customization. Your homescreen isn’t just a grid of icons anymore. Widgets, custom icons, live wallpaper - here you go. This isn’t just bells and whistles. Forget the days of non removable stock weather and newsstand icons. To get an idea what android people are doing with their homescreens, take a look at mycolorscreen.com.
A bigger screen. While a hardware feature, you can’t have a display larger that 4" on a smartphone with iOS. I think the Nexus 4’s 4.7" inch display is the perfect display size for a smartphone. After using it a for a while the iPhone 5 screen just feels small and too narrow.
Apps are starting to get better on Android than on iOS. Some big players are updating their Android apps already more often than their iOS counter parts and some have more and better features in them (WhatsApp and Spotify are to mention here). Also, there are apps on Android that are not allowed on the AppStore, like console emulators. Play a game of Super Mario on the SNES Emulator on the go? Droid does. With apps like Tasker, you can do things on your Android that iOS will never be able to - head over to their site and read through their usage examples to get what I mean.
Interesting hardware features we forgot about, like swappable batteries and expandable storage. With all the devices from different vendors - one will fit all your needs.
What Phone should i get?
Most likely the answer is the Google Nexus 4. It has stock Android and is getting updates promptly direct from Google. All together, it’s a really nice phone and it is cheap. The downside is that there is no LTE version available, battery lifetime isn’t the best and you can get max. 16 GB storage with it - non expandable.
Other choices will emerge when the Samsung S4 and HTC One will hit the PlayStore in their “Google Experience” Editions. That means they come sans the crap vendors install on top of Android and they will get timely updates as well. The HTC One is always a good choice as it’s bootloader is officially unlockable - that allows you to install any Android ROM you want.
What Apps to start with?
I can recommend these apps:
For AirPlay: AirAudio
Twitter: After Twitter killed Falcon Pro you are basically left with the [official app](https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.twitter.android.
Facebook Messenger Messenger’s system wide Chat Heads are just amazing. It is the best mobile messaging solution so far. There are other Apps available that replicate that epic feature for SMS and WhatsApp
And thousands more. Just head to the Play Store and browse. Android, and many apps for it, are amazing. Really a fresh breeze for every iPhone user and fun to discover.