A couple of weeks ago, my beloved Nexus 5 died. It began with random shutdowns, and finally, it would not boot up at all. The likely cause is a hardware failure involving the on/off switch. It was out of warranty, and the Nexus 5 is no longer available, so I couldn’t replace it. I really liked that phone. It was the perfect size, and I loved the way pure Android Lollipop worked without any skins added by the manufacturer or carrier.
So, I had to get a new phone. I looked at the newest Android models available: Samsung, HTC, and LG. But I found all of the newer Android phones to be too big. I just don’t understand the attraction of phablet sized phones. I want something I can easily carry in my pocket. I hope that the next generation will start to swing back the other way or at least offer alternative sizes.
The Android phone that came closest to fitting my needs was the LG G4. I had read a lot of good things about the camera, and it seemed a little less unwieldy than the others, but after the hardware failure of my Nexus 5, I was reluctant to trust LG again, and I thought the UI skin was pretty ugly. I might have considered a Nexus 6 if it wasn’t the size of a paperback book or a Kindle.
Well, that pretty much left me with one other alternative: the 64 GB iPhone 6 (the regular sized one, not the plus). The build quality is, of course, very good, as you would expect from Apple, and performance is rock solid. Most importantly, it was the perfect size for me.
I am not a stranger to IOS. I have used an iPad for several years, but this is my first iPhone, and there are some things that really bug me about this phone.
- Apple always touts the thin, all-aluminum body of the phone as a feature. I found the phone hard to pick up off a flat surface and very slippery. Before I had a chance to get a case for it, I dropped it on pavement and put dings in two corners, and a small scratch on the screen. Also, the camera lens protrudes from the back, leaving it exposed to scratching. The Flexion case I bought, by the way, is excellent, and the phone feels much more secure in my hand. I don’t understand why someone would carry around something as expensive as an iPhone unprotected just to make a fashion statement.
- There is no 32GB model. 16GB is barely serviceable, so I was forced to go with 64GB.
- I really miss Google Now. Siri is just not as smart or proactive as Google Now, and Google Now on IOS is just a shadow of its Android counterpart.
- I miss the Android screen widgets. IOS widgets on the notification screen are just not as useful.
- Trying to organize app icons on IOS is an exercise in frustration, because the icons insist on taking up any blank spaces.
I’m sure I will get used to the iPhone over time — at $750 I will have to — but I really think Apple goes too far in locking down the iPhone for the sake of simplicity.