Among my circle, I have a bit of an Apple fanboy reputation. Personally, I don’t think its warranted, but I can understand the perception.
After buying the old school iPod in college, I slowly transitioned over. Purchasing the very first iPhone, and owning nothing but them since – through the 3G, 4 and now 5. Along the way, I picked up an iPad, and even traded in my trusty Lenovo laptop for a mac.
I am fully enmeshed in the Apple universe. But, I’d argue that is because of proven capability and reliability time and again. Each purchase justified itself and led to the next.
That is not to say I don’t understand the appeal of competing systems. I tried a Windows Phone for a bit. And there are plenty of people who do find the Android ecosystem superior.
Lately, I’ve been having a bit of trouble with my iPhone. Not an error necessarily, but an annoyance nonetheless. I cheaped out on my last iPhone – getting the 16GB version instead of the costlier 32 or 64 versions. Combine this with Apple’s insistence on not including an SD card slot, and I’m running into a problem.
I am constantly running out of space. And not for reasons typically given. I don’t store a ton of music – instead streaming Spotify and Beats. And I don’t make the mistake of keeping all my photos on my device. I use Dropbox and Photostream to backup my pics. I have taken all the easy steps to relieve my situation.
Instead, I have an app addiction. I like keeping a lot of apps on my devices. It feels silly to me to have to re-download something when I want to use it, if I even remember it exists. Plus, there are data cap concerns. Most of the time this is fine. I download an app, and still have room.
But iOS apps have a weird problem. They store cached files, so you don’t have to download the same picture in Instagram 8 times, it stores it on the device. This means that even though the Instagram app is only 20MB, over time it balloons to over 250 MB for me. And all the major apps do this – Facebook, Twitter, Spotify, and so on. Add these up, and it becomes a problem.
Android has a function built into the OS where a user can delete any application’s cache. However, iOS doesn’t trust the user to do this. In order to delete the entire app must be deleted and re-installed. Many times losing log in information, and just being a general drag.
See the difference in Instagram’s official instructions for “Instagram takes up too much space on my device”:
The more you use an app, the more space the app takes up on your phone. If you use Instagram more than other apps, it’ll likely take up more space on your phone than apps you don’t use as often.
If you want to manually decrease the amount of space Instagram takes up, you can delete and reinstall the app. Your photos and profile data will be saved.
The Android app may take up more internal memory than other apps on your phone because we cache photos. This makes the Instagram experience faster for you and conserves bandwidth, which means you don’t have to re-download photos over your carrier’s network.
Leave the Instagram app
Open the Settings on your phone > Applications > Manage applications > Instagram
If you choose Clear data, your download cache will be cleared. Clear cache will reset the memory for the app.
So, I was getting frustrated. I felt like my experience was being ruined by having to constantly worry about space. Apple has an upcoming WWDC event where they are expected to show off iOS 8, and potentially some new hardware. I was able to procure an Android device for cheap without signing a contract, and thought this would provide a good opportunity. I could test out Android, see what new announcements come from WWDC and decide whether to jump ship or stick with Apple before the next iPhone comes out and I’m on another two year contract.