9 Android-inspired features in the iPhone

Happy 10 year anniversary, iPhone! Apple did a masterful job of inventing something the world had no idea how badly it needed, and then the company evolved it into something much, much bigger and much more necessary.

The smartphone.

And the world did rejoice the iPhone’s creation. The praises were legitimately sung across the world for untethering users from the landline. Bravo, indeed.

SEE: The revolution in your pocket: How the iPhone changed everything (TechRepublic)

Then…along came the competition: Android. Eventually the underdog would wind up becoming the most widely used global mobile platform, so it should come as no surprise that the OS for the true original in the market seems to have borrowed a feature here and there—after all, Android brought to life really important bits of technology.

Here’s a list of some examples of iOS features that Android offered first.

Image: Jack Wallen

1: Card-like lock screen information

The iOS 10 lock screen probably reminds you a bit of Android KitKat. With this feature, you can swipe from the left edge to open the camera and from the right to access widgets. That same iOS lock screen brings your information to you in the form of a very Android Card-like interface (which was introduced in 2014, along with Material Design).

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This also came with the clear all notifications button—something that has been available with Android for quite some time. Specifically, this feature was in Android, vanishes, and then reappeared in Android 5 in 2014.

2: Raise to wake

Android users have enjoyed the raise to wake feature since 2013. With raise to wake, all you had to do was lift your device to wake it up and view the information on your lock screen. No buttons required. My old Motorola Moto X had this option, and it worked like a charm. Google then brought raise to wake to the Nexus and Pixel devices—before Apple rolled this feature into iOS 10.

3: Familiarity in Maps

Even back in 2016, Google had evolved its Maps app to include a traffic widget, which gave the user a shortcut for quick access to traffic information. It wasn’t until iOS 10 (released September 13, 2016) that Apple Maps began to integrate traffic information.

Apple Maps also now has third-party integration, which is something Google Maps has had for some time.

4: Control Center

Way back in iOS 7 a new feature was rolled out called Control Center. This handy feature gave the user quick access to things like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi settings, as well as Airplane Mode and music app controls. Sound familiar? It should, as it is similar to what the Android Notification Shade had done for years.

5: Multitasking preview

Apple’s platform brought multitasking previews to iOS 7 (released September 18, 2013), which was very similar to Android’s Overview button. Both features pop up recently used apps so you can quickly switch between them; the biggest difference is that iOS scrolls those apps horizontally, whereas Android scrolls them vertically. On the Android platform, this feature dates back to 2012.


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