Last week we discussed the possible reasons Android users might be jealous of their iOS-owning counterparts. Now it's time to switch things around.

Speaking as strict neutrals (and owners of both platforms), we can see that there are some areas in which Apple's platform continues to dominate. There's no shame in admitting that.

For the same reason, we can see that Android holds an equal number of advantages over its old rival.

Android is no longer the cheap and slightly nasty alternative to iOS. It hasn't been for a good few years, in fact.

Indeed, there are a variety of reasons why die-hard iPhone owners might be actively envious of the 'other side' - if they could but see through Apple's blanket of marketing spiel and borderline disinformation, that is.

Here are some of those reasons.

Screen size and sharpness

Isn't it funny that iPhone evangelists have been espousing the virtues of the 4-inch display as the optimal screen size for several years now, pooh-poohing larger Android phones as unwieldy monstrosities?

It's funny because as soon as the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus arrived along with their vastly expanded displays, those guys miraculously changed their tune. It was as if Apple and its die-hard followers had undergone some revelatory experience of the way smartphones should be.

For the record there have been 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch Android phones for years. There are also 5.7-inch and 6-inch Android phones, such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and the Google Nexus 6 (pictured) respectively, and their users will attest to the added functionality that this extra space enables.

Of course, the ideal screen size varies according to your preference, hand-size, and usage pattern. There's no right or wrong answer here. However, screen sharpness is an easier one to judge. Pixel density is always important, as that's what makes text, images, and games look nice and sharp.

Android has iOS beat in this respect too. You've probably read people raving about the 'pin-sharp' 1080p (1920 x 1080) iPhone 6 Plus display, right? It only takes an envious glance across the platform divide to note that 1080p has been a fixture on Android phones since 2013.

In fact, Android phones started moving onto the QHD resolution last year, and flagship handsets will almost uniformly pick up the standard through 2015.

QHD stands for "Quad High Definition," meaning four times the number of pixels found in a 720p display (which is roughly what the iPhone 6 outputs). To put it another way, QHD means 2560 x 1440 pixels.

The latest iPhone displays are great, particularly when it comes to colour accuracy and viewing angles. But there's no denying that they've been playing catch-up with Android's best in many respects for years.

OS innovation

Notifications. Multitasking. Command toggles. Folders. Widgets. Third party app integration. All features that appeared on Android way before they were introduced to iOS users.

Again, Apple would have you think that it produced the ultimate take on each feature, and only when the concept (and its customers) were ready. But that's largely baloney.

The truth is that Android has proven to be a far more progressive and innovative operating system than iOS over the years.

Apple's iOS has steadily iterated over the years at an occasionally painful rate. There's an argument to say that iOS 7 in late 2013 was the first significant overhaul for the OS (aesthetically in particular) since the platform's initial launch in 2007.

Contrast that with Android, which has rapidly moved from a slightly clunky but promising pretender to full-on stylish, modern OS over several distinct iterations.

Then there's the relative openness inherent within the Android software itself, allowing manufacturers to add new skins and interfaces on top of Google's solid code base. Okay, so we're not always fans of the designs of these custom operating systems, but they often add useful and valuable features that are eventually folded into Android proper.

They help push things forward for the platform as a whole, and they offer choice to consumers (more on which in a moment).

It's not just handset manufacturers that can tinker with and help advance the Android cause either. The OS is ripe for customisation, allowing and even encouraging users with a small amount of know-how to install custom ROMs - user-made Android interfaces - on their rooted phones, granting fine control over pretty much everything.

There's a knowledgable enthusiast community around the Android OS as a result. It's possible to feel a sense of participation and ownership, should you wish it, rather than simply being a passive consumer. Which is really all that iOS can offer.

Hardware range

Would you like an iPhone, an identically-styled but bigger iPhone, or last year's iPhone? That's the choice you're presented with in Apple shops.

Now, which brand of Android phone floats your boat? How about a vibrant, feature-rich Samsung handset? Or the polished, considered sheen of an HTC? The quietly innovative stock Android trappings of a Motorola? A nigh-on indestructible Sony, perhaps?

What screen size do you prefer? There's everything from 3.5-inch to 6.1-inch available, and many points in between.

How fast do you need your phone to be? Do you take many pictures? How much storage do you require?

As mentioned before, you can even select your Android phone based on the particular software skin and manufacturer-specific features it runs.

You get the point, hopefully. Android phones come in all shapes and sizes. If you want options that go beyond one manufacturer's unyielding vision of how a smartphone should look and handle, it's the only mobile OS out there.

It goes beyond mere cosmetic choice or late-contract boredom here, too.

For example, are you an iPhone owner who genuinely prefers the smaller screen of the iPhone 5S and earlier? Have you been lumped with an iPhone 6 that's genuinely larger than you're comfortable with?

Tough. The odds are, Apple isn't going to make another 4-inch smartphone in the near future. If you feel tied into the iOS platform - as many of you probably do - then you're out of luck and options.


Hand in hand with that aforementioned range of hardware is the Android platform's range of prices.

At the top end of the market, Android has some truly outstanding flagship smartphones that can rival the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in almost every way (and in some ways, as discussed, exceed them).

These top Android phones are often priced similarly to the equivalent iPhone range when first released, but are usually slightly cheaper. What's more, such high-end Android phones typically drop in price quickly, unlike a new iPhone model which will remain at the same high price for much of the year after its launch.

But the true value in Android can be found in the tier below this. While penny pinching iPhone users have to look to last year's model for a cheaper offer (and not much cheaper at that), with Android there's a whole range of excellent phones with minor hardware compromises for around the £300 mark, and often cheaper.

There's also an emerging category of handsets, usually from China, with relatively high-end specs that cost less than half the price of the big guns. The OnePlus One (pictured) launched in the middle of 2014 with similar basic specifications to the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the HTC One M8 - yet it only costs £229 up front.

It remains a challenge to get a hold of, and things like customer service and quality control remain relatively limited, but it's undeniably a bargain. And there are more coming, from various manufacturers.

Even sub-£200 phones like the Motorola Moto G offer an experience that you couldn't say was massively inferior to a high-end Android phone, or of course an iPhone.