iPhone and Android phones have more in common than ever, but they are also very different on many levels. There are some unique iPhone features that we’d love to see on Android. It could happen?
Focus on the iPhone is essentially specialized Do Not Disturb modes for specific situations. Android has a feature called “Focus Mode”, but it’s very different. Android also only has a “Do Not Disturb” mode.
It is useful to be able to create specialized “Do Not Disturb” modes for different situations. You can make one for work, exercise, reading, dating, and more. In each Attention Mode you create, you decide which people and apps can bother you.
Introduced in iOS 12, “Shortcuts” is a nifty automation feature for iPhone. To be completely honest, the shortcuts seem like something that would have come to Android first. It’s quite a “tech” feature that can do some powerful things.
The idea of having a built-in app that you can use to create routines, automations, and custom shortcuts is great. Of course, there are plenty of third-party Android apps that can do these things, but having them built in makes them more accessible.
Face ID was released in 2017 and Android doesn’t have a comparable feature yet. Sure, there have been Android phones with “Face Unlock,” but it’s never as good or as secure as Face ID on the iPhone.
I never realized how good Face ID is until I used an iPhone for a while. A fingerprint scanner is certainly nice, but there’s something special about seeing the unlocked lock icon when you pull out your phone and look at it. The fact that it is secure enough to be used with mobile payments is the icing on the cake.
RELATED: Why Face ID is much more secure than Android face unlock
Separate notifications and quick settings
Notifications on the iPhone are a bit of a hassle, but there’s one thing Apple got right: splitting Notification Center and Control Center.
The Notification Center is opened by swiping down from the top left of the screen. Control Center, similar to Android’s Quick Settings, is opened by swiping down at the top right. You don’t have to swipe down twice to see all the buttons like you do on Android. You can be more direct with what you want to open.
RELATED: Android notifications are still miles ahead of the iPhone
shake to undo
Typing on the keyboard of a smartphone, be it iPhone or Android, can be a hassle. We all make mistakes, but the handy Ctrl + Z keyboard shortcut isn’t there to help. The iPhone solves this problem with “Shake to undo”.
It works exactly how it sounds. After typing something, just shake your phone and a message will appear asking if you want to “Undo typing”. As easy as that. On Android, you have to resort to some less than ideal methods.
RELATED: How to Undo Typing on a Samsung Galaxy Phone
The iPhone has a pretty amazing system-wide search feature called “Spotlight.” You don’t just search for apps or contacts on your phone, you can search within apps, messages, photos, notes, and the web.
For example, a simple Spotlight search for “sleep” brings up search suggestions from Siri, photos from Google Photos, photos in the Messages app, a list from Google Keep, a text message from a conversation that mentions “sleep,” a calendar event, the dictionary definition of “sleep,” and shortcuts to search the App Store or Maps.
Android doesn’t have a universal tool like this. Samsung and Google have system-wide search tools, but they’re not as good as Spotlight.
RELATED: How to do a system-wide search on a Samsung Galaxy phone
“Universal” communication applications
Finally, there is one thing that Apple has achieved that Android has been desperately trying to replicate for years: communication apps. iMessage and FaceTime on the iPhone are second to none.
Technically, you can use FaceTime on Android (and iMessage if you’re committed), but that’s beside the point. A company that imposes its services on everyone goes a little against the spirit of Android, but Google already does it a lot. It’s time for Google to take some control.
The Google Messages app is very good. Their video calling app is also very good. Let’s make these apps the standard built-in methods that all Android users have. Communication would be so much easier if you knew how to send messages or make video calls to all other Android users.
RELATED: How to use iMessage on Android and Windows
Will Android ever have these features? Some are more realistic than others, but we can dream. There is value in the two platforms having different approaches, but some ideas are just too good to keep to themselves.