With the iPhone 13, Apple gave iPhone customers a lot to be excited about, from the new cinematic movie mode to the longer battery life and extra storage capacity. However, there are a few important features that Apple’s phones lack when compared to Android competitors such as Samsung’s Galaxy S21.
Many Android phones , for example, feature a borderless screen with no notch and a fingerprint sensor integrated into the display. These features are also not new; they have been available on some Android phones for years.
Having said that, the iPhone has gone a long way in the last two years. Prior to the release of the iPhone 13, the iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 received capabilities previously only accessible on Android smartphones, such as 5G compatibility, OLED display technology on entry-level phones, and Night Mode for the camera.
Rather than specific features, your phone decision will most likely come down to whether you favor iOS or Android. Regardless, there are a few things I’d like to see the iPhone do to catch up to Android.
A notch-free design
The notch on the iPhone 13 isn’t as big as it was on the iPhone 12, but it’s still there. Many Android device makers, on the other hand, have created displays with hardly visible camera cutouts, making the phone’s front feel more like a continuous sheet of glass.
Samsung’s Galaxy S21 smartphones, for example, have a tiny camera hole towards the top of the display, and the company has used similar designs on its flagship smartphones since the Galaxy S10 debuted in 2019. The same is applicable for Google’s Pixel 5a and the OnePlus 9.
A screen that can display the time and calendar
When you switch off your iPhone’s display, it transforms into an idle black rectangle. However, many contemporary Android phones can display information such as the time and calendar events even when the screen is turned off. Phones with always-on screens have been introduced by companies such as Samsung, Google, and Xiaomi.
The ability to charge other devices
Many individuals have gotten into the habit of charging their phones at night. However, whether you possess a wristwatch or wireless headphones, chances are you’ve forgotten to plug them in at least once.
Android phones such as Samsung’s Galaxy S21, Google’s Pixel 5, and earlier Galaxy phones such as the S20 and S10 include a function that can be useful in circumstances such as these. Samsung refers to it as Wireless Power Share, while Google refers to it as Battery Share, although the two functions are practically the same. These devices’ backs may be used as wireless charging pads for items that support the Qi wireless charging standard, which is present on the majority of current phones and accessories.
Apple did not mention this function at Tuesday’s iPhone 13 announcement event, so we can only conclude that it is not supported by the company’s latest handsets. However, there have been some earlier indications that Apple is considering introducing similar technology to the iPhone. FCC documents from October 2020 indicated that the iPhone 12 was capable of reverse wireless charging, most likely for charging your AirPods on the move.
An in-screen fingerprint sensor for unlocking your phone
Most of the time, Face ID works fine, but not when you’re wearing a mask. If you possess an iPhone but don’t have an Apple Watch, you probably miss the days when you could unlock your iPhone by resting your thumb on the home button.
Unfortunately, it will not change with the iPhone 13. Android phone companies, on the other hand, like Samsung and OnePlus, are adopting a different strategy. Since the release of the Galaxy S10 in 2019, Samsung has started embedding fingerprint scanners into the screens of its Galaxy S phones. A fingerprint scanner is also incorporated into the displays of the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro.
A charger that also works with Macs and non-Apple devices
Wouldn’t it be great if you could charge your iPhone and Mac using the same charger? Don’t get too excited.
The iPhone 13, like every other iPhone model since the iPhone 5, has Apple’s proprietary Lightning charging connector. The iPhone 13 can also be charged via Apple’s MagSafe charger or a normal Qi wireless charger, but if you want to plug it in, you’ll need to utilize Lightning.
It’s a pity that the iPhone lacks USB-C compatibility, despite the fact that it’s the charging standard for Apple’s iPad Air, iPad Pro, MacBook laptops, and the spanking new iPad Mini. Using a single charger to charge all of your gadgets is exactly the kind of simplicity I’d want to see from Apple.
USB-C is the established charging standard on Android devices, whether you’re buying a phone from Samsung, OnePlus, Google, or Motorola. Needless to say, these included USB-C cables are much more ubiquitous and useful than the iPhone’s since you can also use them with other devices and accessories.
It’s unclear if we’ll ever see USB-C coming to the iPhone. Apple is said to be working on a port-free iPhone and its MagSafe charging system certainly seems like a step in that direction.