Hooray, Android phones no longer look like the iPhone

No matter how many smartphones are criticized for being boring and blurry, one thing remains true – smartphones released last year look much clearer than ever before. Whether it’s crazy colors, crazy cameras or just crazy materials, high-end Android phones have never looked any different. It’s far from the day when Samsung wanted to be Apple, or when HTC has launched a smartphoneEven that was a dead bell ringer for the then a new iPhoneand it exposes the criticism that smartphones all look the same as a hoax.

More expressive hardware

In 2022, it’s different. Go into any phone store and pick up a major Android phone, and you’ll find something different. From the choice of materials to colors, there is a lot of variety that you would not find before. Gone are the days when Android phone makers used to enslave the iPhone. Many companies go on their own and apologize for their own new designs.

You can name some striking ones, and to be fair, some of them are. Xiaomi’s huge camera tube in the 11 Ultra could double as a parody of ever-swelling camera tubes, the racing stripes on Realme’s GT phones are in your face, and Google’s camera tube would certainly do a double duty as a face mask for a member. of the X-man. These designs come as a result of phones being so ubiquitous and so good that for companies to convince you to part with your money, they need to signal that their phones are worth the cost. First impression is hard to shake, and these phones certainly leave first impressions.

If you want a phone that looks like it could double as a video game computer with weird lights, buttons, and weird patterns, there’s one for you, especially from Xiaomi or Asus. If you want status and look refined and relevant, Samsung has this market locked up, but Oppo’s most expensive phones sit here too. Do you want everyone to know that you are a serious mobile photographer? You have the latest Life phones with camera lenses that out camera lenses.

You should never confuse these phones with anyone else. In a market where there are secure phones, the abundance of choice from refined to excessive is something that should reassure a person who cares about the increasingly bleak market of smartphones. You can still see some iPhone influence on inferior models like the Vivo V23where to sell as many phones as possible as quickly as possible remains the name of the game, but individual, recognizable designs dominate the high-end.

Most importantly, the persistence of smart companies going their own way in terms of design is a pretty good indicator of which companies you should support. If a brand goes out of its way to create a clear, well-designed, innocent look flagship design, you can expect them to plan to stay long-term. At the same time, if a brand pumps out unbranded phones, slap unbranded parts on the inside and launch the next “Pro Plus Max”Phone, you almost know what you will get by buying it.

Software is a different story

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

At the same time, even as hardware evolves to be clearer, the software slips into conformity. Far from adopting Google’s wild ideas about what an Android phone should look like with Material You, the vast majority of Android phones sold still have to shake their habit of designing their software to be an iOS clone. Sure, Samsung and Google stand a bit apart, but most Android phones sold around the world come from Xiaomi, Oppo, Realme, OnePlus, Life, and soon maybe even Honor if the company plays its cards right.

All of these companies have iOS-style operating systems. It’s the now classic 4-icon dock, the bright control and notification centers, the system application design, and so on. Even Google itself is slowly slipping into iOS-style design. Android 12 discarded the five icon layout for a four icon one. There is no benefit to the consumer other than it “looks more like an iPhone”.

At the same time, there are reasons to defend this software convergence. For those smartphone brands that stuck with Google’s opinion on Android, they found medium success. Alternatively, those larger brands that are getting closer and closer to iOS have been rewarded with sales. It is possible that general buyers prefer this system.

If you choose a mainframe computer, with Windows or Mac or even Chrome OS, there is a convergence in design that has taken place in recent years. They all look like you’re not learning how to use a computer every time you switch operating systems. There is a news center, a quick action panel, a centered dock, light themes and dark themes. Why shouldn’t the same be true for a cell phone?

Be together, not the same

Gold colored Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 was held in the hands while partially closed.
Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

It’s dangerous to assume that the only way to get an Android phone that looks different is to get a folding or someone else new form factor. That couldn’t be further from the truth in 2022. Sure, foldable phones is different, and they’re not slabs, but for one reason or another, people still mostly gravitate to the big screen slabs we all know and love.

The good news is that from the back, modern phone designs are moving away from the iPhone and taking on their own identity. For those who want uniqueness, it is the best possible situation.

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