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Cool iOS features that Android can do as well

Authored by: Sterling Keys — Feb 7, 2014

Coming from the Apple side of things myself, one of the biggest issues I had when I was making the jump was not really knowing whether Android could live up to the things that I had come to rely on with iOS. Thankfully, a little bit of research before making the jump made things much simpler. In fact, I found that not only did Android have features that performed the same function as many iOS features, but in many cases, Android did it better. Here’s a list of a few common iOS features that Android can do.

Galaxy S4 vs iphone5
Switching over from iOS? Here's some iOS features that Android can do as well.

Notification Center

ios android notifications
Notification Center? Android has that as well. / © Apple/AndroidPIT

iOS: I think it’s safe to say that Android got it right long before iOS decided to incorporate the Notification Center. While it was a nice addition to give users much more information at-a-glance, providing users with three tabs in which notifications could be sorted: Today, All, and Missed. Sure, it’s a step forward, but still relatively clunky and encumbered.

Android: The notification shade covers most of your notifications, but misses a few items. However, with the addition of Google Now, you have access to all this information and more. Super customizable, it offers you information in regards to reminders, traffic information, sports scores (depending on what you want to see), stock prices, and many more. Plus, it’s got an awesome overload of voice recognition software and the power of Google at its fingertips.

Control Center

ios android control center quick settings
All the same features available at your fingertips with Quick Settings. / © Apple / AndroidPIT

iOS: With the revamp of the Control Center is iOS 7, Apple users finally had access to a ton of quick toggle settings with a flick of their finger. Simply swiping up, you could toggle your WiFI and Bluetooth, change musical tracks, change the brightness of the display, and more.

Android: Beat iOS to the punch a long time ago with their Quick Settings. Simply swiping down from the top right corner of the screen brings up your Quick Settings notification shade that incorporates all the same settings as the iOS control center and more. Get yourself a custom ROM, such as CyanogenMod, and you can customize it even further by adding app icons/shortcuts in this space as well.


iOS: As long as you’ve got an iPhone 5 or later, you can use this “groundbreaking” feature. You can share photos and videos with other friends’ devices, as long as you’re close by.

Android: Available since Android 4.0, Android Beam does the exactly same thing utilizing NFC/Bluetooth. In fact, you can send maps, photos, web links, contacts, and more by just holding two NFC enabled devices back to back. As well, Samsung offers its own version of the same thing via their S Beam feature: while utilizing NFC to create the connection, it jumps over to Wi-Fi to complete the transfer.

Integrated VOIP

iOS: While many people didn’t know about this update (I sure didn’t), you could make audio only calls over Apple’s Facetime using your 4G or Wi-Fi connection. Sure, you can save money when making phone calls and not having to use your minutes, but you needed to make sure that whoever you were calling had an compatible iOS device as well.

Android: Apps. Tons and tons of Apps. While there was no integrated service that allowed for VOIP natively on Android, you could easily get a ton of different software that would do the same thing. Skype and Viber are two of the most popular apps that come to mind when using this service, and I’ve all but switched over to Skype to make long distance calls. Sure, to truly take advantage of the software, you’ll need to make sure that whoever you’re calling has the same software installed, but at least it’s cross compatible across various operating systems: Android, iOS, and Windows Mobile.

Those are some of the most apparent iOS features that Android can do. Can you think of anything else?

From all the way over on Vancouver Island, Sterling Keys started off his smartphone adventure with an HTC S710 equipped with Windows Mobile and knew there had to be something better. Over the next few years, and countless different operating systems, he has finally found his home on Android.


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  • Quick Settings in Android 4.4 doesn't toggle settings but you can use widgets instead if
    that's what you need.
    Some Android versions display toggle buttons for some services when power button is long pressed.

    There IS integrated VOIP in Android since version 2.3. Open Phone app, go to settings, scroll to bottom and there you'll find Internet Calls. Open accounts to add SIP accounts and there you go.

    I wouldn't call Skype a VOIP client because it can only use a Skype account. I consider a VOIP client where I can configure any VOIP account.

  • Haha in my opinion control center is way better than quick settings. When you click a setting to be toggled it actually does it and doesn't take you to the setting app. Plus it has a flashlight toggle which is very helpful and a screen orientation toggle as well.

    • Pat Lar Feb 8, 2014 Link to comment

      guess you dont have an android? at least not a fairly new one..

      • I do (swallows hard) have to agree with Ricardo on this one. Apples control centre keeps with the definition of a quick settings menu with all options being controlled from that screen.

        As much as I prefer the user interface of Androids quick settings, because most of the options take you the corresponding app I can do that quicker going straight to the settings app rather then via the quick settings.

        It would be great to see in 5.0 or sooner a quick settings where the toggle options are within the quick settings. (I currently use the power widget on a home screen)

        And just before it comes along...
        Massive android fan boy.
        Every android phone has been a Nexus Device. (Currently on Nexus 5)
        Yes I know you can root and use a custom rom to change that (but this article is comparing out of the box!)
        And I agree that almost every 'cool' and 'new' feature on recent IOS releases has been on android for many previous versions. (But they finally got one 'slightly better').

      • I guess if you don't consider the nexus 5 a new phone.

      • Pat Lar Feb 9, 2014 Link to comment

        I agree no flashlight, but the screen rotation is there. Xperia acro s (old) and xperia SP..
        and I dont see this "take you to the settings app". I'm not taken to any settings app... jo jo, maybe nexus are "cleaner" than mine..

    • I have a flashlight toggle and many more things like app shortcuts in my quick toggle

  • Pat Lar Feb 7, 2014 Link to comment

    Seems like the title should have been, "Cool android features that ois snaked after 4 years"

  • As a danish reporter/apple-fanboy said, when he reviewed the first nexus7 tablet: "With jelly bean, i can finally begin using Android". And that was a looong time ago.

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