What I Wish I Knew Before Switching to Android

I’ve been a life-long praiser of Apple. One of the sheep flocking to the Apple store to buy the new iPhone, Apple Watch, etc. that really didn’t have many improvements over last-years edition. Fully integrated into the Apple ecosystem and aggressively acquiring new products with little-to-no comparison of other tech in the market, I’ve admittedly been one of the “Courageous” followers.

But times have changed and I’ve bought myself the new Google Pixel for Christmas! After slowly recognizing the lack of technical and design innovation at Apple, I’ve so been looking forward to adopting Google’s Material design, interaction patterns, and ecosystem. iOS interfaces have become flat and dull to me, and attempts to make apps like Music more usable have just confused the masses.

With the combination of high-build quality from Google themselves and clean, naturally interactive design, I firmly believe that Android is no longer just for the budget or tech-inclined audience; Google has truly become a leader in this mobile world. If you’re looking to make the switch or already have, take a look at some of the things I wish I was told before switching. With these small steps, upgrading is fun!

  1. Google Photos is incredible at managing your photos. Install and sync your photos to the cloud before making the switch — Sync all of your photos from your phone, tablet and computer to Google Photos’ cloud. Yes, you’re giving Google permission to track and scan your photos but you’re gaining the ability to search for people, locations, and almost anything across all of your photos, ever. You’ll never lose those precious photos of your cat staring ominously at you from afar.
  2. Remove yourself from iMessage on all of your Apple Devices — This will (hopefully) reduce the chance of missing any messages in the transition completely. There’s plenty of guides on how to do this online, but you basically just have to uncheck a box in your iMessage preferences (on Mac) and remove iMessage from you Accounts page (iOS).
  3. Export your contacts and upload to Google — Again, there’s a couple of guides online of how to do this, but its pretty simple. Just export all of your apple contacts through icloud.com and import them straight into Gmail’s online interface.
  4. Facebook Messenger will be your all-around messenger — unless you’re an avid user of kik or WhatsApp, the Facebook Messenger app on Android can be used for both Facebook messages and regular SMS messages. Sure you can’t iMessage your friends with those oh-so-beautiful blue balloons, but Android’s “floating heads” that stick on top of whatever app you’re using makes texting super streamlined.
  5. Download and default to the Inbox app by Google — Gmail is still the default email application on Android, but Inbox deals with your email in a much more intelligent and efficient fashion. Especially if you’re an inbox zero kind of person.

Finally, use the hell out of your new phone! It takes some getting used to new interaction patterns but you’ll hopefully you end up preferring Android’s dedication to innovation.

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