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Android to iOS: Day Two - Getting Back Into The Groove

Onto my second day back in the iPhone camp.

Yesterday I found I didn't like the browser or the keyboard.

After another 24 hours I can say the former isn't as bad as I first feared - although it still lags behind the HTC Sense browser - and the keyboard has become more usable as I've used it more.

So my intention today was to look at applications. In order to download some New Zealand specific applications - for my bank and phone provider for example - I needed to switch my Apple ID from the UK to NZ. Changing countries for your Apple ID is fantastically easy. Takes all of five minutes including the time it takes to enter credit card details for your location.

Which makes the removal of all purchased content - apps, music, video - from your account, on completion a pretty ferocious kick in the teeth. Those items already on my iPad Mini were still there but when I went to install them from the App Store to my iPhone it demanded that I buy them again.

Well that's not happening.

Luckily I still have my UK bank accounts, so was able to transfer my Apple ID back to the UK, but only after installing the NZ apps I required.

It took some messing around adding and removing Apple IDs to my iPhone, but eventually I was able to gain access to my previous purchases and load my iPhone with all the apps I need. Siri took some effort to recover though, looks like she's not an option for Kiwis. After changing my international settings back to the UK I was finally able to sit down with a fully setup iPhone.

This locking of content to locations is madness and needs to be revisited. The world's population is becoming ever more mobile and should be able to expect to take their purchases from location to location. More on this topic in a separate post I think.

Applications have always been the strongest weapon in the iPhone's armoury, "there's an app for that" has transcended smartphone circles to become it own mini-meme. So I had no problem finding apps for all the things I needed. If anything there were too many apps and at times I felt that I needed a curator to point me to the best ones.

I do think Apple need to take another look at how good the app store is for app discovery. With the number of apps being added each day I wouldn't be surprised if there weren't more than a few gems sitting undiscovered in there.

The Android widgets that I thought I'd miss so badly haven't yet been an issue. Not least because Apple have done a fantastic job of the notification centre. Drag down the menu bar to see appointments, weather, messages, stocks and social updates, as well as options to tweet or post to Facebook. This delivers the Android widget experience without the need to swipe through home screens.

In fact once I stopped looking at the iPhone as a surrogate for an Android device and started treating it on its own merits I became a lot happier with the experience. That experience becomes even more powerful when you start to look at the integration with third party accessories. 

I'll focus on these two areas in tomorrow's update.

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