Google Phones/Service Question

For whom do these phones and corresponding service make sense?

While the pixel may have changed this…and noting none of these are value judgments but personal justification for people making the choice.

[ul]
[li]Quality hardware with minimal provider or manufacture additional spyware/abandon-ware that is unremovable.[/li][li]Wants service that is low cost and pay for you go, and/or would rather pay for a phone upfront vs pay the interest on a subsidized device in the US.[/li][li]Doesn’t lock you into a single vendor for media like ios.[/li][li]Wants or needs a fully functional browser and doesn’t want dozens of apps installed due to privacy concerns or just UI preferences (some apps won’t let you zoom on content when they wrap a small app around a website)[/li][li]People who think that having at least two viable competitors in a space results in better products on both sides.[/li][li]People who have been bitten by the numerous exceptions to apple care.[/li][li]People who place less value on vanity brands.[/li][/ul]

But it is complicated, and there are valid reasons for several of the vendors.

Thx

Can you explain this? I recently switched back to iOS due to the fact that BMW doesn’t support Android Auto. I am running Plex, Google Music, Spotify, Netflix, Amazon Video, IHeartRadio, etc.

It may have been a fault with earlier versions of iOS but it isn’t anymore.

Note how those are all streaming services, not everyone is blessed with good coverage or want to pay to stream content they use often.

Google Music, Netflix, Amazon, Plex all sync locally. We have a Google Music family plan and I can download and play offline.

Just like Microsoft isn’t run by Bill Gates anymore, Apple isn’t run by Steve Jobs. The vendor lock in that defined the earlier years is loosening.

I really don’t want to get into this debate, because to answer the OP it doesn’t matter.

But I do want to say that you don’t see what is going on in the background there, with the media types or that outside of Amazon, in a particular purchase chain, you don’t own that media.

Apple will not support FLAC, or other patent free formats that preserve complex harmonics in a few (not popular to be honest) genres that will suffer with downsampling. And if you use itunes match it will sometimes replace matched content with more modern mixed versions that suffer from the loudness wars.

I am not talking about audiophile topics here, but a well known industry problem that even limits the use of streaming services is you happen to prefer the original higher dynamic range versions.

If that isn’t important to you I am jealous of your options for streaming. To reference my original reply, Apple wouldn’t have allowed any of the streaming options that you referenced if Android wasn’t a viable competitor.

Even if those problems were solved, I still wouldn’t use streaming because I personally find the pay structure to the artists predatory so will buy physical media, bandcamp, or another site which is more fair to the content creators and is the more typical form of music that is fine in lossy formats. I doubt anyone who does’t know a significant number of professional musicians would put this on their priority list (unfortunately).

Every system has limitations and every vendor has restrictions. It is nice to have a choices so you can find the one that fits in with your needs and preferences the best.

That’s got nothing to do with your claim of being locked into a single vendor for media. Besides supporting almost every important streaming service (ie, multiple media vendors), users are completely free to rip their CDs/DVDs/Blu-rays and load them onto their devices. Where is the vendor lock in again?

The HomePod, iPhone 8 and iPhone X do support FLAC. Apple Lossless was open sourced 7 years ago. iTunes Match does not replace your local content.

If any company had no viable competitors, they wouldn’t either.

It would have been nice if you had backed up your claim that iOS locks you into a single media vendor with some evidence and not instead told us why you think streaming sucks.

ALAC is not AAC, but feel free to open a thread in GD, but I really have no interest in helping you defend a brand. I just don’t personally care about brand loyalty as much as you personally do. That is not a matter of good or bad, just different.

I don’t care much about brand loyalty either, I care about getting facts straight in GQ.

You said iOS doesn’t support FLAC— it does.
You said iOS doesn’t support other patent free formats— it does, ALAC is one of them. AAC has nothing to do with that.
You said iOS locks users into a single media vendor— it does not.

Switched to Android (Pixel 2) in Feb for my first non-Apple phone since the 3G almost a decade ago and I can confidently say I will not be returning to Apple in the foreseeable. It’s only when you leave that you realise what an insular and controlling environment Apple has created.

A small number of devices support FLAC, which does not extend to older devices or een the ipad pro, itunes or apple music if you want “normal” features like album art and metadata.

The ipad pro does not support FLAC

And if you use iTunes match or apple music it will be converted.

[

](https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT205919)

There is limited FLAC support in OS X and itunes

[

](https://discussions.apple.com/thread/8381212)

Plus almost all the devices that support FLAC missing a builtin headphone jack, so fun with dongles or you lose any potential advantages for specific content that MP3 destroys complex harmonic content.

But yes I will clarify on the media vendor part. I was talking about media that you own, you do now own the content on streaming services and if a content creator decides to pull the content you lose access to the content (outside of the MP3s you buy on Amazon).

If you don’t want to use the built in tools or desire reasonable basic integration across the ecosystem Apple does have FLAC support on a tiny fraction of devices.

That’s a fair criticism and I’m glad it spurred you on to do research and recognize you were incorrect about iOS not supporting FLAC.

So you were talking only about media you own when you said iOS users are locked into a single media vendor? That’s fine. And still wrong.

It’s still not clear to me - is this thread about Android phones in general, or Google brand phones (Pixel series, and the now discontinued Nexus series)? And what is meant by “corresponding service”?

The Google Pixel series phones are pretty good Android phones, but the main distinguishing feature (compared to other brand Android phones) is the full compatibility with the Google Project Fi mobile network. Project Fi is actually a system that lets you use multiple mobile networks (Sprint, T-mobile, etc), and also includes worldwide roaming. For purely domestic use it’s a bit more expensive than competitors (esp. if you use a lot of data), but it’s a good choice for frequent international travelers. I use Project Fi on my Pixel XL and I’m very happy with it.

Without a computer they are, feel free to show me an option outside of the Apple store that allows you to buy the “media” and not just rent without using itunes etc…

https://bandcamp.com/help/downloading#ios

Compared to:

https://bandcamp.com/help/downloading/android
Note here where you can rent, but not buy from amazon as an example.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=201377380

While iTunes Store is DRM-free, other content is not. You have to use some 3rd party tool to remove FairPlay Digital Rights Management or deal with AirPlay Mirroring to stream it on many devices although you can finally get amazon prime on apple tv and ios you still can’t purchase on the device.

[

](https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=201422920)

And the external vendor support is iffy at best, thus the homepod and spotify issue as an example.

Noting that I was talking about media, in the context of owned content, feel free to show me how I can purchase outside of apples ‘walled-garden’ like you can on Android outside of the still existent but less invasive walled garden.

s/While iTunes Store is DRM-free, other content is not./While iTunes Store music is DRM-free, other content is not./

From your own link “You’ll then be able to use our iOS app to play all of your purchases on your device immediately, without needing to go through a computer first.”

To recap, you’ve gone from “iOS locks you into a single media vendor” to “but streaming doesn’t count because of my own personal ethical reasons” to “but you need a computer!” I now cannot keep up with your goalpost shifting. I blame myself, I should have stopped you when you made a meaningless distinction with streaming content. The fact is, iOS does not lock you into a single media vendor.

Now you’ve turned it from just a critique of iOS into an iOS vs Android debate. So I guess you DO personally care about brand loyalty. Whoops.

Please look at the title of this thread, have a good day.

Titles are a nice start, but I’m more interested in what people say in the thread. YMMV, I guess.