As you can imagine, the writers here on TalkAndroid spend a lot of time on the internet combing through articles, news releases, and fanboy wars that would make Stalin run in fear. One thing I’ve always found that I want to do is reply to a lot of misinformed Apple supporters who spit a message of hate despite knowing very little. These people are often called “iSheep” or “Sheep” (with their Android counterparts being the “fandroids”). These people know very little about the other ecosystem yet preach to the world why the other one is terrible. Both camps have them, both are equally annoying. Well, starting now I’m going to be posting a few replies that I’ve wanted to say while browsing the web (and getting into a debate with these people is pointless, so I often won’t post). Today’s mythical claim?
“iTunes gives users a better experience and has the benefit of being able to restore your data if your phone is wiped (or stolen). My friend wiped my data once, and I surprised him to show that I could just resync my iPhone! That’s one of a million reason Android is so behind iOS: iTunes!!! All of your music and videos are stored on your computer in the best music program out there. Can you sync Android with iTunes? Heck no. That’s why I’ll never touch it.”
I know, you read the last sentence and nearly burst into tears laughing. But stay with me. I hear this a lot from iPhone supporters: iTunes is great. It backs up all of your data, it is the easiest way to manage your media, and having all of your phone connected to your computer makes your world easy. While each person has his preference, I have some serious issues with these claims.
“benefit of being able to restore your data if your phone is wiped”
Anyone who’s ever rooted their phone knows that this is NOT an iPhone advantage/monopoly. In fact, I’d say iOS is at a HUGE disadvantage here. Why? Whenever I (or any other flashaholic) flashes a new ROM on their phone it usually means wiping all your data to get a “clean install” (nothing interfering with your new interface). There have been weeks where I’ve wiped my user data several times in a day. You know what then? You Nandroid restore. And unlike an iTunes restore, you get more than just your media and apps back. You get all of your settings back. That means you don’t have to set ANYTHING; your phone is exactly how you left it. Also, the Android integration with Google is a godsend. If your phone is stolen, the moment you replace it you sign into Google and EVERYTHING is back. Mail, Contacts, Apps, Calendars, Documents, etc. There are also apps like My Backup that will backup all your info to a cloud based server. And the best part? You don’t need to be stuck to your computer to do it. That’s why I love Android so much. Restoring data or syncing data with my iPod seems like pulling teeth now. I hook it up to my computer and wait forever for it to sync or restore my data. On Android? I sign in with my Google account. With my iPod, I can go shower, do homework, watch a movie, write a play, and come back later and hope it’s done syncing. With my Evo, I can make phone calls while syncing. And somehow syncing data from 4G is faster than syncing while wired to my computer. Which brings me to my next point…
“stored on your computer”
From a company that is suggesting that computers are a way of the past, the iPhone is heavily reliant on one. And not just a computer, one computer. If you want to manage your “files” (aka, music) you need to connect your iPhone to one of five computers you’ve registered to share your iTunes account with. Want a cloud based music service? Too bad. Need to set something up on your phone but you’re away from your computer? Too bad. This is where Android (in my eyes) really shines. If you HAVE to use a computer (and I can’t think of a time where I HAD to…I just wanted to because it’s easier) you can use any computer you want. If you have your USB cable on you can manage your files on any computer you want. Don’t have it on you? No problem. Everything on your phone can be done with wireless. Whether it be dropbox, doubletwist, whatever, you can manage your files without having to plug it in. This is especially true for your phones many Google features. I love being able to login to my Google account in class, add an assignment to my Google Calendar, and have the alarm on my phone go off when I’ve forgotten about it later that day. I’ve done it many different computers, in many different locations. All you need is your Google password and you’re set.
“…the best music program out there.”
Again, opinions very, but I really don’t think iTunes is that great of a music application. Do I use it? Yeah. I have a Macbook Pro and an iPod that I use for music…I don’t have any alternatives (and when you’ve invested 4k plus of music in iTunes switching just doesn’t seem as appealing). iTunes has ridiculous policies and a strict iOS only stamp on it. Transferring music to other computers is a pain, you are stuck with the format they give you, and godforbid you don’t have a Mac and iTunes is buggier than Internet Explorer (okay not as bad…but close). I think the fact that you have options on Android is what makes is better. Pick any music organization program you want and you can sync it with your phone.
“Can you sync Android with iTunes? Heck no.”
While some people love iTunes to death (mostly because it IS better than a lot of alternatives and has essentially a monopoly on the mp3 world), there are people that don’t. Just the fact that you can CHOOSE on Android is why I think it’s ridiculous to say that the iPhone is head and shoulders above Android in terms of media. The ONLY thing the iPhone can say is that it packs an amazing amount of storage out of the box. Other than that, the experience can be exactly the same. Add that to the fact that your world revolves around iTunes and a computer and that’s reason enough for me to say no thanks. Long live freedom.