Why I Traded in my Pixel 3 for an iPhone 11

, Why I Traded in my Pixel 3 for an iPhone 11, The Travel Bug Bite

I am writing this on my MacBook Air and I make my YouTube videos on my iMac desktop computer. While I’ve always had Apple products in my life, I had never even considered getting an iPhone until yesterday.

My aversion to iPhones was pretty standard. I didn’t feel that the cost justified the price. When I was comparing the Pixel 3 to the iPhone X, the Google phone turned out to be $200 cheaper and the camera was supposedly even better. That is why I went with the Pixel 3.

Another reason I avoided iPhones is because they slow down the older phones right when a new one comes out to get people to buy the new phone. It’s hard to support a company that does this to its loyal customers.

Longevity is another big factor and it relates to my first two complaints about the iPhone. Both my MacBook and iMac are refurbished. I bought this MacBook almost two years ago and it was five years old at the time. It still works almost perfectly and turns on in seconds – I can make iMovie videos without much hassle and it can handle me having dozens of tabs open at once!

Granted, I did buy it for $600 used when in the past I’ve gotten brand new laptops for the same price. But they never lasted more than two years without slowing down to the point of being unusable. That being said, if Apple was so good at making technology that lasts, why did $1,000 phones become paperweights after just a year?

Fast forward to a month ago, when my $800 Pixel 3 fell and the screen cracked. It was a neat crack down the middle, barely noticeable if it didn’t go right through one of the two front cameras… this completely ruined the zoom-out selfie function that made the Pixel 3 so amazing.

We called Google to find out how to get it fixed. They said it would be $150+ depending on where we went. They pointed out that if we had gotten insurance in the first place, for the same $150, it would have been covered. But the total cost of the Pixel 3 plus the insurance would have been as much as the iPhone X.

I live in Rhode Island and the closest place to fix my phone at a Google-approved store was in Dedham, Massachusetts, about an hour from home. So getting a functional selfie cam would cost $150 + a three-hour round trip. I was already getting frustrated at this point.

My awesomely stubborn husband Isaac decided to call all the local phone fixing companies to see if they could fix my Pixel. They all said no, pointing out that if it were an iPhone they could fix it on the spot for just $50. Finally, we found a place that offered to fix it for $120! They just needed to order the screen and they could do it in a few hours once the screen arrived.

Two weeks later, I had a fixed phone! I picked it up in the evening and everything seemed fine… Until I turned the phone on the next day and tried to take a selfie with my dogs, only to realize that there was dust in between the glass and the camera so it looked like we were floating in a cloud. We took it back.

They peeled the screen back a little and wiped some dust away. It was still blurry. They were complaining about how Pixel screens were so hard to work with because they broke too easily while they tried to clean it further. Suddenly, the screen snapped and the phone went green. “See?” they said, “this is why we don’t work with Pixels.”

After some arguing, they agreed to order another screen and replace for $60, which would be a financial loss for them. But also for us, since we had already spent $150. We agreed because at this point, my phone was completely unusable and we returned a week later when the screen had arrived. After it was installed, they realized that the screen was defective and had a tiny dot of dead pixels.

“I told you these screens were fickle,” he told us again, offering us the choice to take it as is for $40 or wait for a new screen to arrive and to pay $60 as had originally agreed. After almost a month without a good phone, I agreed to take it, since the problem was minimal. It turned out that the camera was still fuzzy because it was damaged in all the screen changing and the dead pixels spread throughout the phone.

They ordered us a new screen for free, since the faulty one was under warranty. It wasn’t until I brought the phone home and removed the protective silicone case that I realized that the glass back of the phone was shattered. They would need to replace the back, which would cost $100, to be able to fix the screen. So just one phone drop could lead to $300 in damage.

This is when I lost my patience with my Google phone. Just to spite them, I jokingly looked into buying the iPhone X through my phone provider, T-mobile. That’s when I found out that the iPhone 11 was just $5 more a month, and there was no downpayment. The total cost of the new iPhone 11 was just $699! It was cheaper than the Pixel 3 had been and it was significantly cheaper than the new Pixel 4.

Let’s go back to my reservations about the iPhone… cost for value was no longer valid. This was an amazing price for a flagship phone, rivaled only by the Pixel 3A. But $699 was a lot if this phone would only last me a year. That’s when my iPhone savvy friends told me about the Apple Upgrade Program.

The Apple Rewards Program is simple. You buy the phone directly from Apple and you pay a monthly fee for 24 months, just like you would through your phone operator. The only difference is, that for just $6 more a month, the phone is 100% inured. Also, after 12 months, you have a choice to make. One option is trading in your phone for a newer/different model and restarting your 24 month payment plan, possibly with a slightly different monthly payment..

Alternatively, you can finish paying off your phone and after the 24 months you can do whatever you want with it. Keep in mind that iPhone (just like Pixel) accepts trade-ins for a significant discount. The iPhone 11, for example, costs $399 if you give them your old iPhone. Although there are some restrictions, this is still an amazing deal. If I do choose to keep my iPhone 11 for two years, this is an option I have once I want to upgrade.

This is why I now have an iPhone 11. It’s red, pretty,  and bigger and heavier than I am accustomed to. But the slightly smaller iPhone 11 Pro was $12 more a month which wasn’t worth it for me at this point. Maybe I’ll trade up in a year, who knows? Unlike with my Pixel 3, I feel like I have various options that won’t break the bank! I never thought that having an iPhone could be the more affordable option.

That being said, the Pixel 4 still claims to have a better camera and I wouldn’t be surprised if it was true. The Pixel 4 is also cheaper than the iPhone 11 Max. Both are amazing companies and they have great phones. But after my unfortunately experience with the Pixel 3, I will give the iPhone a chance.

Oh, I almost forgot the biggest perk of owning an iPhone. You can play Tiny Wings, the best phone game ever invented!


  1. I’ve always been an iphone owner but just upgraded from a 7 to the pro max – it’s a game changer – particularly the wide angle lens and advanced video features. I will be able to leave my 16-24 wide angle (it weighs a kilogram, which is a lot in carryon space)

  2. Sigh. I still back Pixel because of the software and the customization. I’d also just rather support Google than Apple as a company. But, I do ae the merits of iPhones now that Flagship Androids have caught up in price.

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