The debate between Android and iOS for which is the better operating system is never going to end. Over the years, both OSes have had many upgrades and UI changes, and today they share many similar features.
But after all these updates, it turns out that there are still some things exclusive to Android phones. To help you decide between the two, here’s a list of seven features an iPhone lacks.
1. Create Multiple Users and Guest Accounts
Multiple Users and Guest Mode is a blessing for users who share their smartphones with other family members or friends. On Android devices, it was introduced with Android 5.0, while Apple has completely ignored this feature over the years.
The feature allows you to maintain privacy if your kids or friends use your phone. You can log in to another user or guest account and then hand over the device. Each user can have their separate passwords, data, and apps. We’ve shown how to create multiple users on an Android phone in case you want to use multiple profiles on your smartphone.
The multiple-user feature also has an option to customize phone calls and SMS settings. You can choose to allow phone calls and SMS notifications for other users. Also, you can install apps directly from other users instead of downloading them again, and an app will be updated for every user if one user updates.
2. Access Internal Storage Over USB
When connected to a computer via a USB cable, an iPhone merely gives you access to photographs and videos. On the other hand, an Android phone offers access to your entire internal storage, allowing you to share any file between an Android phone and a desktop.
With a USB cable, you can connect an Android phone to Android Auto on any supported vehicle to use various apps and navigation. Also, using the USB Tethering option, your phone can share its internet connection with the PC.
Furthermore, if you don’t want to use any of the features, you can select No data transfer to only charge your phone when connected to a computer.
3. Fully Customize Your Home Screen
The options for home screen customizations have always been limited on iPhones. With iOS 14, Apple introduced some features like App Library and Home Screen Widgets, but they are still far behind what an Android phone offers.
From changing icon packs to using different launchers, an Android phone has a plethora of tweaks for home screens. The Google Play Store has plenty of third-party icon packs for your home screen. Some Android phones even have a preinstalled Themes app that allows users to apply system-wide themes and change fonts or icon packs, all in one place.
Customizations on Android don’t end here. With the home screen settings, you can change the size of the app grid, hide app icons, and show notification counts on the app icons. Moreover, you can also change the default launcher if you want to use an alternative like Nova Launcher, which offers even more customizations.
4. Use Multiple Copies of an App
On Android phones, you can make clones of apps and use multiple accounts on them. So if you want to use two WhatsApp accounts on your phone, then you can make a clone of the original WhatsApp application and use another account on the clone.
Android phone manufacturers like Xiaomi and OnePlus have included this feature in their software. You can also download a third-party clone app from the play store if your Android phone doesn’t come with this service preloaded. If you’re looking to clone apps on your phone, we have a detailed guide on creating multiple copies of an app for Android phones.
5. Change the Default System Apps
For default apps, you can’t personalize much on an iPhone. After the iOS 14 update, iPhones got the option to switch their default apps, but only for the Email and Browser app. An Android phone offers a lot more. You can change all the default apps, like the phone, messages, digital assistant, and home apps, to any third-party app with better UI and features.
You can also set third-party apps to open certain links directly, rather than having them open in the browser.
6. Use an Always-On Display
A lot of Android phones come with an always-on display feature that allows you to check specific information like weather or battery percentage without waking up the entire screen.
You can customize the AOD to display app notifications, the date and time, what music you’re playing, weather alerts, and more. The feature is quite handy and battery efficient for smartphones having an AMOLED display.
If your Android phone doesn’t have an AMOLED screen or AOD feature, you can always download third-party apps from the Play Store to use this feature. iPhone neither has this feature nor any third-party apps on the App Store, and that’s why there can be times when you’ll be disturbed by your screen waking up for notifications.
7. Install Custom ROMs and Gain Root Access
Custom ROMs are modified versions of the Android OS that offer better functionality and plenty of customizations.
Custom ROMs have many advantages, the biggest being extending the life of your Android phone by providing access to the latest software.
Root access allows you to have complete control over your Android phone. Once you’ve rooted your device, you can install different mods for customizations, overclock or underclock the processor to increase performance or battery life, use some of your internal storage as extra RAM, and even overclock the screen above 60hz.
The closest thing the iPhone has to rooting is jailbreaking, although that’s harder to do and doesn’t provide the same level of access to your device.
There is always a chance of the device getting hard bricked (completely dead) while flashing a custom ROM or rooting, so always follow the instructions properly.
Also, for installing a ROM, you need to unlock your device’s bootloader first, and once the bootloader is unlocked, your phone will not be under warranty anymore.
Enjoy a Better Smartphone Experience With an Android Phone
Android is a powerful operating system backed by a vast community of devs continuously working on improving its stability, performance, and features.
Above listed are seven unique features found only on Android phones. iPhone has been quietly catching up, but it’s hard to say that it’ll ever match the level of freedom that an Android phone offers. Now it’s up to you to decide if you want complete flexibility with your phone’s OS or if you can live with restrictions.