Forming part of the vast and ever-growing Android community is certainly rewarding especially for its customisability, which offers more flexibility for both the developers and users.
Android surely has its perks; however, users are still attracted by certain Apple`s iOS apps.
I recall when Apple bought the popular Dark Sky weather app around two years ago, infuriating the Android community in the process, as following the acquisition, the lads at Cupertino automatically ousted any Android users utilising this excellent weather app.
If you endured that, well, we feel you, but as you know Android always manages to find comparable alternatives. Couple of examples which come to mind are Apple`s Dynamic Island, which can also be implemented on Android, it`s called dynamicSpot, while Android`s substitute for Dark Sky became Overdrop.
Now, what if we told you that there could be another choice instead of downloading a third-party app which is similar to the original? Imagine that you could still run iPhone apps as they are in their original format BUT on your Android device! I bet we have got your attention, so read on and let`s explore how.
Fixing It Via Emulators
What’s an emulator? In a nutshell, an emulator could be a hardware or a software which mimics another system, thus making the main system called the `host` believe and behave like any another system called the `guest`.
In our case, you guessed it, the host is Android, so an emulator would make Android believe that it is now an iOS system, the guest.
This could be a smart solution, or a workaround, since as everybody knows AndroidOS and Apple`s iOS are so diverse from each other that they are not compatible at all.
We must keep in mind though, that while an emulator will enable us to convince the Android system to behave like an iOS, we still won`t have the full functionality of an iPhone.
A couple of popular emulators we can name are Cycada/Cider or iEMU, usually downloaded via .APK files which are acceptable on AndroidOS, while Apple`s iOS accepts IPA files. It is impossible to download .APK files on iOS since they aren`t compatible.
Downloading from Unfamiliar Origins
Safety first. Always check the site from where you are going to install your emulators or .APK files. Check what the reviews or comments say about it, and if need be, protect your device with an antivirus.
Having sorted that out, next in line is to make sure that your AndroidOS settings are enabling you to download .APK files from unknown sources other than Google.
Instructions may differ depending on which AndroidOS version you are on and the manufacturer of your device.
The easiest way to enable permissions is by following the below listed steps:
- Open Settings and click on search icon
- Type Unknown Sources
This way you will get immediately to the settings you need.
Alternatively, you can also access it this way:
- Open Settings and tap on Apps
- On the upper right-hand corner tap on the three-dotted icon
- Choose Special Access on the dropdown menu
- Tap on Install Unknown Apps
- Choose the Browser or Source you`re using to install these .APK files
- Toggle the switch next to the Source to permit downloads
Once you go through the above steps, you are now ready to proceed and download your .APK files of choice, whether these are emulators or third-party apps.
Popular Applications to Consider
There are various emulators on offing, but we mention some of the most used hereunder.
This setup doesn`t allow you to install iOS apps on Android, instead it simulates an iOS device by utilising the cloud, thus enabling you to use the iOS apps in a web browser.
Appetize.io is only available for the first 100 minutes, then one must pay to continue using it. This setup can also be accessed via PC or Mac since it is an online service.
An advantage here is that you don`t need to root your Android device.
Considered to be the most popular, Cider comes completely free plus no in-app purchase, which is another plus, that`s why it was used by iOS developers back in the days.
Cider might not work if you have the latest Android versions, but it functions on versions 2.3 and up. It lets you use all of Apple`s devices` functions, not just apps, so it is recommended to leave a minimum of 2GB storage space, 512MB of RAM and some other storage space for the app itself.
iEMU, also known as Padiod, has similar capabilities of Cider, and while you don`t need to root your device, it works on rooted ones too.
It holds a friendly interface, and requires at least a gigabyte of RAM, while you need to close all other apps running in the background. iEMU works also with .ZIP and .IPAS files.
Are .APK Files Safe to Install?
Again, we reiterate on security first. Your AndroidOS is designed to protect your privacy, but keep in mind that when you decide to download any .APK files from unknown sources you are in reality bypassing several security protocols.
As aforesaid, it`s imperative that you download content from trusted or highly reviewed sources, so do your investigation and choose attentively.
For most part .APK files are considered as safe, but it is a good idea to backup via cloud service and avoid leaking any personal information.
Can We Obtain Full iOS Experience on Android?
Unfortunately the straight and simple answer here is no, as some popular renowned Apple apps like Facetime and iMessage are exclusive to iOS, and can`t be accessed not even via emulators.
Certain apps are beautifully crafted and ought to be accessed by everyone, but we know that tech brands are out to obtain the biggest share of users globally.
At least now you know how to get a peek at some iOS apps.