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Keeping your Options open when Buying a Smartphone


When you exist in what is referred to as the Apple ecosystem, you might feel you have to constrain yourself to an Apple Smartphone. Using an Apple Smartphone can make certain processes simpler and faster as Apple has built things to work with other things that are Apple. Airdrop (as outlined in the above noted articles) makes certain tasks simpler. However, in an open systems world, these capabilities exist also.

Apple resists all things open unlike Google and Microsoft. Microsoft, in fact, is having somewhat of a resurgence in embracing open systems. They make their Office 365 available everywhere and what isn’t available currently will be. Google has basically always embraced open systems. Googles software has always been designed to work across platforms primarily because, I would think, they never had platforms of their own or were late in coming to their own party. Android is a perfect example of this. They bought the software and immediately began licensing it to third part vendors. They now sell their own platform known as the Pixel but that was a while in coming. Mind you, it is only of late that you could say Android has become a robust environment.

Why Open Systems

If the Apple ecosystem is so good, why would you veer from that environment to another. The reason probably consists of a number of things but mainly it is competition that is brought to the table that makes other systems appealing. Price is a big factor. As an example, if you have to pay $1000 for a iPhone X you can likely get an LG V30, considered just as good if not better, for $700 to $800.

Another factor is likely the feature set of the Android which to some is more appealing. For the purposes of this discussion, the LG V30 will continue to be used. So a number of the outstanding features of the phone are:

  • it’s screen is a very high resolution, AMOLED type screen
  • for the music lover, it has a DAC32 which makes the sound of your music superb
  • can extend memory for data storage on an external SD card
  • customizable interface
  • a camera system that is hard to beat – dual lenses supporting wide angle and close up shots
  • always on display allowing you to just glance at your phone for the time
  • high powered, Snapdragon 835 chip
  • bezeless without the notch

If you just limited yourself to an iPhone X, it’s not that you would have a bad phone by any means. It is a first rate phone which will ensure software compatibility all around but you might be giving up on features deemed more important.

Software Compatibility

Here there is no question that if you lived in the Apple ecosystem you would have full software compatibility which some cannot do without. However, all the new major software programs are coming out with both Android and IOS versions of their software at the same time. In addition, the more time derived apps are starting or have ported their software to Android.

As an example of major software that has been ported to Android for a seemless experience there is:

  • Day One
  • Journey
  • 2do
  • iA Writer
  • Omnifocus through a third party solution that works quite well
  • plus
  • all the software in many categories that run in both environments such as
  • Todoist
  • TickTick
  • the Microsoft products
  • the Google products
  • and on it goes

Buying an Android today allows you to interconnect and talk to a other devices without issue.

In addition, there are many cross platform tools for moving items or snippets between the two environments that are more than effective. This trend is only to continue in momentum with the popularity of Android and the high quality phones available from various suppliers.

Not only is this solving real world problems in that people can work together on teams outfitted with different equipment, it is advantageous to developers in that it is opening up large new markets to them. The speed of adoption will increase with time as people who are skilled at the function of making this happen either enable the functionality on someone’s phone or people are trained or learn how to do this.

The bottom line is there is nothing to fear. It might sound daunting but it isn’t. A good integrator can make quick work of pulling the environments together. If your particular application isn’t available cross platform probably a workaround solution will do. Evernote is a notes application available on all platforms but Things from Culture code is an Apple system only. In this case, possibly TickTick which is very similar to Things or Todoist or 2do will meet your needs and maybe even better.

If you use DEVONthink in you Apple environment, Nimbus Notes or Evernote could pick up the challenge. Calendaring, task management, mail etc can all be cross platform. The best tool to enable this is Fruux a caldav/cardav systems architecture.


If your a devoted Mac user with no need for the functions you’d see in an Android phone, you are likely better served with an iPhone simply for simplicities sake. However, it is just as viable to be running your whole household on Apple but to use an Android phone for its feature set combined with the price point. Competition is a good thing and with time the viability and simplicity of using Android in an Apple ecosystem is certainly doable today and will be enhanced with time. In fact, some functions even by the highest performing iPhone, that being the iPhone X , cannot do what some Android phones can do.

There is no reason to limit yourself to Apple if something about an Android phone that really appeals to you. The viability of this mix is very high. There are some die hard iPhone users who have switched to an Android and just don’t look back as they are so content with their new configuration.

In the 80’s, IBM to maintain it’s position, used what was called the FUD factor to maintain users as IBM’rs. It stood for Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt. FUD was put to rest by the end of the 80s for a variety of reasons but one being Apple. The world did not stop because people used an Apple workstation connected to an IBM mainframe. Although for many IBM’rs this was pure sacrilege but the world evolved and it evolved far more effectively than it would have if everyone had continued to use an IBM dumb terminal connected to that mainframe. Creativity was unleashed and new ways were applied to old problems. In fact, completely new business’ with different business models evolved bringing us to where we are today and that is one far step from the dumb terminals connected to a mainframe.

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