Considering swapping over to Samsung from Apple, need some advice.

Recently sold my iPhone 5 to upgrade to the 5S as I do everytime a new iPhone is announced but after giving it some serious thinking and a few let downs from Apple with the 5S I am considering a S4 or Note 2.
I don't really know much about the Android market as I have only had a Galaxy Ace during a week of waiting for the new iPhone to be announced last year.

So if anyone can give me some advice on which is the best Samsung or any other Android device n which is best value. I will be purchasing outright as well as I don't want a 24 month contract.



    I have a note 2 and I love it. Started out on a 3GS and when that got a cracked screen I got a HTC Desire just to tide me over until I got it fixed.

    I have never gone back, and never will. If you are considering a note 2 I'd go the note 3 as due to design it has a larger screen yet it's pretty much the same size as the note 2.

    It is easily the best phone I have ever used and is the first phone I have ever considered holding onto for more than a year. The battery life is insane and you'll be amazed at what android can do. A great example of the capabilities of android is an app called tasker. look it up.

    Good luck with the choices! (My gf as well as my sister are also making the same choice at the moment seems like the 5s is a bit of a let down)

    • +3 votes

      i dont get why ppl change phones all the time. i still have iphone 4 for 2.5 yrs now. one thing good is that it's very reliable. for something that is used constantly, been dropped heaps of times.. it still works great. i love simplicity and ios. my phone has hardly any apps. just music. i thought about a bigger screen but i think i do prefer a smaller screen for phone/ipod…. i jog with my phone too. can still get good resale and in high demand.

      im glad apple has not made it too cheap so to protect all the apple users.

      i suppose if u plan to upgrade that often then u wouldnt want to spend too much.

      plants v zombies came out first on ios and infinity blade 3 is only on ios. even if we change phones, everythjng else is still apple. even my kids prefer apple. itune cars is such a popular gift for kids birthdays! we have hundreds worth.

      • +1 vote

        Its better having access to both at the end of the day. I don't know why people restrict themselves?.. Especially given how cheap it is to get android devices. The good thing about ios is that many of the 99 cent games/apps often are given away, while android don't tend to do that. One great thing about android though, well for us bargainers, you can use telstra credit to buy apps with. Now that might not sound good, but I buy sims for $10 and activate one/month which gives me a month worth of calls plus $30 to spend on google play or in other words plenty of free paid apps. xD I don't really care which os gets which apps first, apple tends to get things quicker and has a lot of stuff that android doesn't get too, but at the end of the day you can't beat android value.:)

        • +2 votes

          good thing about ios is that many of the 99 cent games/apps often are given away, while android don't tend to do that.

          That's because once an app on the Play store goes free, it can't revert back to paid. <MOD - Removed foul language> retarded policy if you ask me. It helps iOS apps gain momentum which might get them into the top 50 list.

          And yeah you can get pretty good prices with 67% off apps on the Play store but that still doesn't compare to 100% off. iTune cards sales aren't exactly rare either with 50% popping up every few months. There seems to be less and less $10 for $30 Telstra SIMs lately (the $10 for 3GB iPad data can be a hit or miss if you want to change it to a $30 SIM).

          As for exclusivity, iOS used to have a lot but now they seem to be evening out.


          Either way, you still have to consider the value of the encore phone plan in that $10 too. I don't know what telco's will offer $220 worth of funny money, unlimited calls from 6pm-6am and unmetered data use for streaming apps such as mog for free.. Unless you know of a deal that I can get free calls month in month out? So I have to say the deal is better than 67% off. I more look at it, you are paying for the month service, and getting the apps for free, because I can't find a phone deal that offers as much for $10/month..

      • +2 votes

        I'm the same way, I'm happy to spend $700+ for a smartphone that I use for at least a couple of hours a day but why would I do that over and over again year after year?

        My first smartphone was an iPhone 3GS, I upgraded to an iPhone 5 for a couple of reasons. I was missing out on taking photos of my daughter because the camera was so shit that every photo looked like crap and the phone was a bit laggy.

        This phone is a year old now and I don't see any reason why it couldn't last me 3 more. Why the hell does anyone need a new phone every 6 months when they are this good?

        Like when a tradie is looking for a drill, sure there's ozito's, Aldi brands and Masters 909's but why buy multiple crap drills when you can spend the same amount (although upfront) not waste your time buying a new drill and always have quality machinery.

        • +2 votes

          Exactly. People nowadays just want the greatest and latest just to show off to their friends or maybe… buy to make themselves feel better.

          I certainly love to buy new things. It feels great but the feel does wear off pretty quickly. Nowadays I just try to make the most out of everything. I save more money and the world becomes a bit less polluted… heh

          Still using a 2 year old phone (samsung galaxy nexus - latest android), still using a 3-4 year old computer (3ghz quad core/ssd/5870 - so still pretty damn fast), still using a 4 year old panasonic 42" 1080p plasma and everything still works… excellently.

          I've noticed society these days = more consumerism > economic materialism.

        • +1 vote

          Great post, I agree exactly.

          One point to add is, if you're selling your older device to upgrade, sometimes it's timely to do it every 2 to 3 years to get some value out of it.

          Depends on your needs. I usually upgrade when I find myself getting frustrated with the tech I have or I'm lacking new tech that would be extremely helpful.

          Otherwise, why rush to upgrade if it works well and suits your needs?

          Only if the price is right, otherwise, save the $$$.


    I just did this.. interesting experience starting from scratch.

    Biggest advice - don't import your messages. The messages app will get overwhelmed and crash.


    Apparently the LG G2 is the new superphone with rave reviews. I'm a HUGE Samsung fan, but always have an open mind and the reviews on this LG are unbelievable! My contract runs out in December so if the G2 is available on Telstra by then I'll give it a serious look. Otherwise it will be the S4.

    The HTC One is also supposed to be fantastic, and would have me looking at it also, but I somehow cannot get by the low pixel count on the camera (even though it shouldn't matter and the low light performance is supposed to be awesome).


      Not sure if your aware but if your contract runs out in December then you would be able to get a new phone now if you are staying with the same network and not downgrading your plan.

      They always let you upgrade at 21 months if your staying with them, I suppose they are happier to lose a couple of bucks to be guaranteed that you'll stay with them.

      If your heart is set on a G2 and if you happen to be with Optus then 'good news everyone' it is coming to Australia in November with an exclusive deal with Optus (for now).

      Alternatively you could grey import the phone through someone like Kogan and jump to the Dark Side with Aldi Mobile (total 24 months cost based on current figures ~$1492 or $62 a month including phone) and you get unlimited calls,SMS and 5gb on intermawebs.

      (Sorry if you were already aware of all this).


        Not true any more Rekabram :(.

        My company is actually a Telstra dealer and effective July this year the re-contract period without any ETC is only 30 days. They've changed it. I will be able to re-contract in November, but not before without suffering early termination charges.

        I have no choice. Telstra barely works in my office - but Optus and the other do not have signal at all. No, I'm not country whoop whoop (only 20 minutes south of Perth) but in a massive dead spot no provider seems to be interested in fixing :( So Telstra is my only option.

        The G2 is slated to cost $699 outright. Unfortunately any handset I get on any plan will cost significantly less than that with the MRO/Bonus options so if the G2 is not on Telstra by November, LG will miss out.

        The way I see it, the manufacturers are not helping themselves at all by doing these exclusive deals no matter what they think. I CANNOT jump ship so if LG have decided to do exclusive - screw them - Samsung gets my dollars again. Very simple.

        They're kidding themselves doing exclusive deals.


          They're kidding themselves doing exclusive deals.

          Yes and no. Obviously the phone manufacturers would benifit by everyone having them, but they get huge piles of cash not to do this. For somepeople that care around phones and have options it might be enough to switch providers. For others they just walk into the store and ask what phone they will get for 'free' every two years.

  • +1 vote

    I just made the switch a week ago (4S to S4).

    At the end of the day all the top phones are good bits of kit. So it's the subtle stuff.

    Can't get Foxtel Go or Fox EPL app on S4 (can on S3 which blows my mind as a long time iPhone user).

    Typing texts/emails/comments is awful. Android fans in my office insist it's better. There's no debate - they're wrong. I'm at tge point where I cant be bothered texting people and im going to stop going back to correct my textbin this comment.

    being able to fownload torrents/files is great. a huge bonus.

    music player is sjit. so are yye replacements. soubd is too liw, headphone presses do strange thibgs.

    browsing websites is erratic. I clicked it -open! I didnt click tgst-stop opening!

    my case is lovely!

    persobally, I wouldnt nake tge switch with hibdsight.

    • +1 vote

      Typing texts/emails/comments is awful. Android fans in my office insist it's better. There's no debate - they're wrong.

      Like many things this is what you have learnt and the methods you use. They are wrong for you, they are probably correct for themselves. Dvorak keyboards might be better for typing without prior experience, but I'm betting you (and most people) won't be able to deal with that at all.


      Agree with the typing thing. I wish there was a setting to make it more iphone like in the way it automatically replaces clearly incorrectly spelt words. The Wife is getting used to spelling errors lol.

      It's not that I can't spell I just have big fingers which means I often miss the mark on the keyboard.

      My biggest bugbear is the lack of mute switch. The whole holding down the lock button to mute is annoying. It's a little thing but it annoys the hell out of me still (admittly it's day 5).


        There's an iPhone keyboard emulator on the play store. No idea if it's any good, I prefer SwiftKey to iphone keyboard. :-)

      • +1 vote

        Seriously what keyboard are you guys using???

        Have you tried swiping? Having owned both phones I can confirm I can not only type CRAPLOADS faster on Android than on iPhone, I do so with less mistakes.

        I HATED the Android keyboard in Gingerbread (Android v2.3), so used Swype instead which was great. Even tried Swiftkey for a while. Now with Jellybean and it's swipe enabled keyboard I don't even download Swype any more.

        You realise you can switch keyboards right? The iPhone has one keyboard available, Android has hundreds. Just pick one that works for you.

        SirFlibbled you mean mute while playing music? I haven't noticed a mute switch on my kids iPod touches, and I can't see one on my old iPhone. Where is it? I can see that being handy.


          You just flip the phone over if you're using Samsung motion feature to mute / stop ringing tones and notification tones

          And to mute music you just press and hold the volume key or swipe the notification bar down and press mute. , but it's not as handy as a hardware mute button on iPhone


          No I just mean mute the phone in general. I have to leave my phone in a locked box while at work and like to mute it before going in (actually I seem to have my phone muted more often than not). A mute switch on the iphone was convenient, you flick it and it's done.

          I didn't know about changing keyboards. Will have to play with the phone a little more.

        • +1 vote

          I have to leave my phone in a locked box while at work and like to mute it before going in

          Then you might be interested in Llama (location profiles) or a NFC tag to automate some of your daily actions.


          Or if you feel like a power user, you can automate your own actions simply based on where you are by using either Automate-It, Llama or Tasker.

          And that's the cool thing about NFC enabled phones… you can make it do tonnes of stuff by simply swiping your phone over a tag, no need to interact with the phone. Apple really needs to be on the ball on this one and add NFC capability to their next gen device.


          Download notification toggle, you can choose a range of settings like blue tooth, wifi and sound - including mute, which appears in your notification thingy. Simple and easy.


          This would be all so much easier if they just had a bloody switch…


          "And that's the cool thing about NFC enabled phones… you can make it do tonnes of stuff by simply swiping your phone over a tag, no need to interact with the phone. Apple really needs to be on the ball on this one and add NFC capability to their next gen device."

          Apple have already implemented their own version in iOS7 without tags but based on location called iBeacons. It's a little sparse in features right now, but let's see if it catches on.

  • +1 vote

    iPhone 5S is a bit of a let down? Why do you think so?
    I don't know about that. I've used Android devices before and they are generally less responsive than the iPhones. If you want tests and benchmarks, here is recent test ( iPhone 5S (dual cores) also smoke other Android phones (quad cores, octa cores) in performance (

  • +1 vote

    The android market is a bit of a minefield with everything from really high quality devices to devices that really do not warrant the label "phone" or tablet.
    I do a great deal of development on both iOS and Android and would provide the following advice.
    iPhone's have a good design and are generally reliable. Build quality of the devices is very solid except in a few common areas, you will have heard typical complaints particularly on the strength of the screens and durability of the home button. Overall though they are solid devices. The iPhone 5 was a letdown particularly due to its poor battery life, which in term was poor because the device finally supported 4G speeds and the extra bandwidth tends to drain the life out of the iPhone 5.

    In the Android space Samsung, or as they are better known as Samstung, is know for bulk production of products with lots of "features" Quality is a mixed bag but generally always on the lower end and service does not exist anymore. You are more likely to end up in ligitation with Samstung than you are to get a device actually fixed. The Notes are feature packed, but also laggy on the writing recognition and the Note 2 is a step down in quality over the note 1. The Galaxy S series are known for self bricking (die by their own hand due to faults in the firmware design) and devices like the Aces, Fits etc degrade very fast over time due to poor build quality and are plagued by firmware issues. Samstungs biggest problem beyond no support is building working drivers/firmware and you will find that many people revert to finding community driven firmware projects just to get them working. I remember our first two Galaxy Fits could not even turn on the screens reliably when they had incoming phone calls.

    After going through dozen's of devices for testing I've found the Sony Xperia series are pretty solid little performers. A lot of work also has been put into getting the interface tweaked and they are a notch up in quality, even over the HTC units. Usually a little more pricey but worth it. There are a few in the series, the Z is getting all the press these days but the other models have their pros.
    I'd look at those as a step up over an iphone, failing that check out HTC, but I'd stay clear of the Sam Stung.


    I would actually recommend the HTC One X to the OP.

    Purely for aesthetic reasons, coming from an iPhone 5, I feel the S4's plastic might feel "cheap"

    The One X is the best build android phone currently available.


      Pretty sure you mean the HTC One.

  • +2 votes

    I recently lost my iPhone 5 so I started using my old Samsung S2.

    After using my S2, I was amazed how I could live with an iPhone for so long. There's no customisation, it's just like a toy phone. I like being in control with all my phone's features, themes and notifications. I noticed that the performance on my S2 was noticeably slower (obviously), but I decided that I did not want an iPhone 5 anymore and shelled out a bit more money to upgrade to a Samsung S4 instead.

    I can honestly say that I preferred my S2 over the iPhone 5 - and I definitely love my new S4 more than the iPhone.

    • +1 vote

      Upgrade to a phone that can handle Android 4.1 to remove lag via project butter. Also touchwiz sucks, I'd recommend stock Android through Nexus phones.


        As somebody coming straight from an iPhone, I don't really understand much of this jargon haha. All I know is that the S4 performs just as well as my iPhone did, and it's easy to use as well. :)

        If I was a bit more technically inclined, I probably could have a more customised and better performing phone - but for somebody coming from iPhone, the S4 is easy to use and customise and it performs just as well.


          Cool. Basically, in Android 4.1 Jellybean they added what they call Project Butter that makes everything like animations and transitions buttery smooth. If you already have a super power octocore processor like in the S4, probably won't need it but it will make it even smoother. My guess is your S4 is already on at least 4.1 anyway

          PS. There are much better launchers than Touchwiz. Touchwiz tends to even slow things down compared to stock Android (which is normal Android without Samsung putting crap on top of it). If you ever feel like customising your phone, I'd even download a launcher from the Play Store like Nova Launcher makes it look amazing, no risk required. Don't like it? Just uninstall :)


    Forget Samsung for now, get the HTC One.

    Fiancee wanted a S4, was sick of her iPhone after owning 3S & 4S, really didn't utilise the "i-system" programs at home so didn't see the benefit.

    She tested out the S4, did some research (she never does research, I was impressed) and was still aiming to get one… then she tried the HTC One.

    She said it knocked socks off her iPhone, beat the Samsung, and on top of that, has a great home page that's similar to many online social media outlets, organising and updating her with all the hollywood trash she can handle at a single press!

    I must admit, I own an old HTC and although not the best phone at the time it has served me well for nearly 3 years. The times I've had to call and ask about certain things with my phone, I've bypassed the Aus telcos and dealt with HTC direct. Perfect taught english and very prompt knowledge and problem sorting. No smoke and mirrors. If they had to look into things, they would say they would call back in "x" amount of time, or at a particular time, and they did! Could you imagine actual customer service!!!???? This is the biggest reason I would say go HTC. Their products are knocking Samsung off the top Apple competitor, are Android based, look and feel awesome and battery life is ok for a smartphone.

    Look into it.


    Nexus 5 will be high spec and low price. Ozbargainer's dream.