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I think we all deserve to give Google Chairman Eric Schmidt a round of applause for his recently posted Google+ message telling the world how to ditch the iPhone. In a fairly lengthy write-up, Schmidt describes in detail how to set up an Android device, move contacts over to Gmail from iCloud and a quick reminder that ditching Safari for Chrome is the new hotness.

Jesting aside, Schmidt’s write-up isn’t anything “new” from an informational standpoint, but it’s interesting to see his thoughts on Google+. In the words of Schmidt: “Android devices…are a great Christmas present to an iPhone user.” Well said boss man, now let’s talk about the still ridiculous timeframes for Android updates, eh? Where’s the update for the HTC One Google Play edition anyway?

Hit Schmidt’s Google+ page for the full breakdown on how to switch from iOS to Android.

Here are the steps I recommend to make this switch. Like the people who moved from PCs to Macs and never switched back, you will switch from iPhone to Android and never switch back as everything will be in the cloud, backed up, and there are so many choices for you. 80% of the world, in the latest surveys, agrees on Android.

1. Set up the Android phone
a) Power on, connect to WiFi, login with your personal Gmail account, and download in the Google Play Store all the applications you normally use (for example, Instagram).
b) Make sure the software on the Android phone is updated to the latest version (i.e. 4.3 or 4.4). You should get a notification if there are software updates.
c) If you are using AT&T, download the Visual Voicemail app from the Play Store.
d) You can add additional Gmail accounts now or later.

At this point, you should see all your Gmail, and be able to use any apps and they should work well. Be sure to verify this.

2. Update your iPhone or iPad
a) Power on, connect to WiFi, make sure your Gmail is logged in, and upgrade all of the iPhone software to the latest iPhone software release (typically iOS 7+).
b) Check that you are using iCloud to back up contacts. Go to iCloud (in Settings) and enable that for contacts (“on”). If not using iCloud, go ahead and sign up for it. (The latest Mavericks requires the use of iCloud for Mac users if you want to transfer contacts.)
c) For your personal Gmail account, in Settings/Mail, turn on sync for contacts. In the latest iOS, this should sync your Gmail contacts and iPhone contacts.
d) In Settings/Messages, turn “off” iMessage, as that messenger is an iPhone-to-iPhone messenger and if its on your iPhone friends texts won’t make it to Android. Your iPhone will still use SMS messaging to reach your friends if you use the iPhone after this change.
e) Make sure your iPhone is fully synced to the Mac iTunes. Your photos and music should all be backed up on your Mac when this is done. Go ahead and verify that on the Mac and the iPhone.

At this point you should see all your Gmail, have your apps, and have your contacts in the Android phone. If the contacts are not in the Android phone, manually download the contacts as follows on your Mac:
a) Go to, login with your Apple ID, and click on contacts
b) In the lower-left corner, click on the wheel, and “select all” the contacts and “export” the vCard into a vCard file (in Downloads).
c) In a browser, go to, click on the Mail button and select “Contacts”. You should see a list of your Gmail contacts. Import the vCard file into Gmail/contacts using the “Import contacts” command and it should have manually added your contacts. Delete any duplicates or use the “More / Find & merge duplicates” function.