The biggest adjustment to using the S22+ didn’t come from the phone’s physical features, but rather its Android operating software. Using the new (to me) messaging, Google Play store, and other general apps took a little recalibrating, some of which were easy and useful to do, others more annoying to stick to.
I have trained my fingers to instinctively know the swipe patterns to navigate my iPhone, and even when I turned on swipe controls on the S22+, I found them to not work as satisfyingly as I’d hoped. The screen remained bright and responsive as ever, but when I wanted to swipe side to side to move between tweets or Instagram posts, I often found that I had to swipe from a very specific point on the screen to get it to work.
However, I found the opposite to be true when texting. Using swipe to text was so much more accurate on the S22+ than it ever is on my iPhone, and I think it made texting much faster than normal.
Yet, I didn’t like the haptic feedback of the normal tap to type on the S22+ as much as I like the iPhone’s.
Other small tradeoffs popped up throughout the week. My TikToks looked beautiful on the AMOLED display, and I could feel how smooth the scrolling experience was when the variable refresh rate — which moves between 10hz and 120hz — was in play. But experience-wise, so many of TikTok’s best AR filters weren’t compatible with the device. So I often felt let down by the technically impressive phone.
I fell in love with the ease of the in-screen fingerprint sensor and was glad to bid the iPhone’s ugly notch adieu, but I had more trouble with the S22+’s face unlock than I ever do with my iPhone’s Face ID. And I was pleasantly surprised to find that pairing my AirPods was pretty easy, despite the clash of ideologies. But I was later unpleasantly surprised to discover that using my AirPods’ microphones to capture video proved more of an issue.
Did these tradeoffs make me hate the phone? No, not even a little bit. Most of these things were fixable with practice or time, and even the AirPods problem simply piqued my interest in the arguably cuter Galaxy Buds Pro for a future upgrade. I didn’t expect the S22+ to be perfect, and most of my gripes with it became easily forgivable.
Alas… I am a woman of habit. Also, FOMO.
You may be wondering why, after all of this praise and willingness to bypass some of the S22+’s flaws, I started this review by saying I was only almost willing to become an Android convert. You see, my lifetime of Apple usage has created a product ecosystem I’m so used to that I’m not sure what would break it. But it’s not just my devotion to FaceTime and Memojis that Samsung and Android have to battle.
Despite thoroughly enjoying my week with the S22+, and even seeing how it outperforms some of my beloved iPhone’s capabilities, one tiny little thing made it so I simply cannot make the switch: iMessage group chats.
At the start of the week, I tried to add my Android number to existing group chats on my boyfriend’s iPhone, and I made the startling discovery that Apple BARS YOU FROM ADDING NON-PHONE NUMBERS to iMessage group chats entirely. So if you have an all-iPhone friend group who happens to make a group chat without you, then tries to add you, they won’t be able to do it. You will be left out forever unless you can convince them to make a whole new group chat. And let’s be honest, who the heck is doing that?
So yeah. Unfortunately, I can’t be the Android queen in my Apple-dominated life. Nearly every single person I interact with daily has an iPhone, and I can’t handle knowing that I’d be on the outs. If Samsung wants someone like me to make the switch, it’s going to have to do more than convince me that its beautiful, well-functioning phone is worth it. It’s going to have to convince my fellow stubborn iPhone friends, too.