Seeking advice on Android vs iOS


Hey Mike,

I'm in the interesting situation where I have both a HuaWei Mate 10 and an iphone x. Frankly I would love to get out of the tyranny of apple, as I was one of the many frustrated with a worse phone after every upgrade (which is why I bought the HuaWei to begin with). The iPhoneX was gifted to me by someone I work with, as there are security concerns with HuaWei, which I also believe to be relatively unfounded.

Oddly, Pleco is one of the defining issues for my conversion form iPhone to Android. I still read at night with my iPad using PDF/doc reader. My questions are as follows:

1) Broadly, do you think Android or HuaWei in particular pose a security risk. I am back and forth between China often for work, and that is a legitimate concern for me and clients.

2) As someone who works with both, which do you recommend?

3) What are the easiest ways to sync between Android and iOS? I guess if I am making cards on my iPad I can just put them into one folder and export the folder semi-regularly without much of an issue.

Thanks for your advice.



Staff member
1) Yes. They're making progress but they're nowhere near Apple yet and the fact that you're integrating a CPU from one vendor with a low-level OS from a second and higher-level customizations from a third makes security inherently more difficult for them than it is for Apple controlling everything end-to-end.

Also, those frequent upgrades though frustrating are also extremely useful for security; your 3yo iPhone may be slower than when you bought it, but it's still running the latest security patches, while your 3yo Android phone hasn't been updated for 2 years and while that does mean it's still running nice and fast it's probably also got some major unpatched vulnerabilities.

2) iOS. But a lot of that is personal preference - I recognize there are massive tradeoffs in each platform but I'm more accustomed to Apple's - along with the fact that iOS' developer tools are a lot nicer than Android's, which obviously isn't something an end user needs to be concerned about. I'd also add that I'm a huge fan of Face ID - once I got used to it I found it to be a vast improvement over a fingerprint sensor.

A more practical issue with Android - and the reason given by probably 2/3 of the people who write us about switching from Android to iOS - is that thanks to the Great Firewall, it's really hard to take an Android phone between China and anywhere besides China, to the point where a lot of people keep two separate phones, one from a Chinese OEM with Chinese services for use in China and one from Samsung or Google or whoever with Google services for use outside of China. Google services don't work in China (without an awkward VPN setup, anyway) but are more-or-less essential to get the most out of an Android phone anywhere else, Chinese alternatives to those services are fine within China (and in some cases even better than Google's versions) but don't work well if at all outside of China.

3) Yeah, manual backups are the most we can do at the moment.


Thanks, Mike. This was very helpful. Sad that my foray into android will end so soon, but happy I got to mess around with Huawei. I honestly enjoy the UI of the mate 10 a bit more than iphone x, but it complicates my life a bit too much. Have a good one!


Actually, while I'm here, what combination of mail/calendar applications do you use/people that you know use that work most effectively in China?