Software and Solutions
Typically, PC users aren't too enamored with iTunes. It's a laborious, un-optimized piece of software that struggles and strains -- some might say deliberately, as Apple backhandedly demonstrates the virtues of owning a Mac. But desktop software aside, the iPhone 4S has the advantage of a unified content backup.
Android competes, ultimately, with its ability to sync to a Google account, buy music from Amazon and use similar digital film distribution channels as the iPhone 4S, but it's not quite so neatly packaged. Apple puts everything under one banner, from sync to software and multimedia purchases, and makes it all available right out of the box. For once, it seems Apple offers everything Google's system does, plus its own extensive and powerful suite of sync, backup and shopping portals.
Android offers firmware updates almost as regularly as Apple does, which is both good and bad. It's good when an update delivers the likes of Siri, which has left Google panicking for an alternative on its own super-powered handsets. Hardware is only as good as the software it runs, and iOS is incredibly tough to beat in terms of its slick operation and great features.
But what Android lacks in style, it makes up for in customization -- a dirty word that will get any designer fired from Apple. So is it a tie on the software and firmware front?
Siri is the new smartphone superstar, and even if Google does catch up and offer a similar virtual assistant, it's always going to be known as "Android's Siri." Extra points to the iPhone 4S. But for the more tech savvy smartphone user, the iPhone 4S's limited sandbox will feel very restrictive, making Android an easier choice for those who demand full access.