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Choosing Your New Smartphone Part 4: Make It Music to Your Ears

by Keith Gatling | 13 days ago

Still not sure what kind of phone you should get? That’s OK, we haven’t gone through all the considerations yet, but here’s one for you...what do you want to do with it?

Well, OK...yes...I know you want to make phone calls and send text messages. But aside from that what else do you want to do?

Both Android and Apple phones have fairly decent cameras. I was actually surprised to find out how good the camera on my iPhone was when compared to my fancy-schmancy Canon. Turns out it took pretty good pictures, it was just the compression used by Facebook that made them look like garbage when I looked at them there.

What apps do you want to run (if you know what an app is yet)? Both systems have a pretty healthy selection of apps, but I have to admit that when I tried to find Android versions of some of my favorite iPhone apps, I came up empty. By this, I don’t mean that there wasn’t an app for Android that did something similar; I mean that there wasn’t an Android version of the same app, with the same name, from the same developer, that worked pretty much exactly the same as it did on the iPhone. In fact, in many cases, I couldn’t even find something that came reasonably close...and I tried really hard.

But maybe that’s just because I started on the iPhone side. Maybe if I had a favorite Android app, I wouldn’t be able to find it for Apple either.

Let’s talk about music for a moment. If, like most people these days, you’re into streaming your music (and have a good enough data plan to allow you to do it), apps like Spotify and Pandora exist for both systems. In fact, the Apple Music streaming app even exists for Android.

But what if you like to own your music, and actually have it on your device? I’m one of those people, and bought one of the first iPods back in 2001. If you like to actually own your music, and have it on your device arranged in playlists that you made yourself, then you’re in luck on both platforms.

An iPhone will work seamlessly with whatever music and playlists you already have in iTunes, and I specifically mention iTunes because it exists for both Macs and Windows computers.

If you’re considering an Android phone, there are two music apps to consider. The first one, iSyncr Pro, will wirelessly synchronize playlists between your computer and your phone. It costs $9.99, but is well worth it. The second one, is their free Rocket music player. This plays all the music that’s been synced over.

And of course Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, OverDrive, Libby, Hoopla, the Amazon app, and Audible work on both types of phones. That’s right, While you might not like the idea of watching a movie or reading a book on such a small screen, listening to audiobooks is likely to become a big part of your life once you get a smartphone!

Both systems have very good calendars. In fact, I would recommend using the Google calendar and calendar app even if you have an iPhone. That’s because Google tries to make their stuff work with everyone, and you’ll be able to share items on your calendar with people on both platforms.

What about being able to do video chats...easily?

Apple’s FaceTime is really great...but it only works with other Apple devices. That means you can’t FaceTime someone who has an Android phone. Google’s Duo, however...you guessed it...works with everyone.

Well, that’s enough for this post. Next time I’ll talk about what the rest of the family has.