In context: The new features and upgraded specs on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro have had iPhone users raving since launch. Some especially love the “Dynamic Island,” exclusive to the Pro model. It’s become such a welcomed feature that now Andriod developers are copying it.
Apple’s recent iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro releases have piqued the interest of Apple fans and enthusiasts, with the phones boasting improved specs, quality-of-life enhancements, and new features. One feature drawing considerable attention, even outside the fandom, is the “Dynamic Island,” found only on the iPhone 14 Pro models.
Rather than having a notch, which has plagued iPhones and many other phones with OLED displays, Apple has taken a new approach with the Pro model. Instead of using a static notch-shaped cutout, Dynamic Island takes a software approach to create a blackened area around the camera cutout.
The neat thing about this feature is that it allows the island to display various information, like notifications within the dark space. During the iPhone 14 Pro reveal, Apple demonstrated a few apps, including Apple Pay and music playback using the island to display various related information. Connected devices like AirPods can also display status information in the mini window. Many Android fans have shown an interest in the iPhone’s Dynamic Island because it helps mask some of the “ugliness” of the camera cutout, a common feature with OLED phones.
Jawomo is a third-party studio specializing in quality-of-life apps for Android. It listened to Android users’ feedback and developed an app called “dynamicSpot” that serves a similar purpose to Apple’s Dynamic Island.
Dynamic Island on Z Flip (dynamicspot in the Play Store) pic.twitter.com/0idAMXuB10
— Shane Craig (@ScaryifLiteral) September 22, 2022
The dynamicSpot app works as intended, but push notifications do have to be enabled. Unfortunately, this setup causes a minor quirk that displays the same information twice — once in the expanded camera spot and once in a push notification. The app still has some benefits for users, allowing them to customize many aspects of the island, such as position, size, notifications, and more. Customers can upgrade to a paid version through an in-app purchase. The upgrade allows those customers to perform a long tap on the spot, which expands it into a much larger bubble (above tweet), similar to what Apple demonstrated in the Dynamic Island demo.
Apple’s new Dynamic Island is undoubtedly an attractive feature and masks the space around the front-facing camera. Apple’s version is more “streamlined” than dynamicSpot. However, Apple allows developers access to the Dynamic Island API, whereas the Android alternative operates at the global push notification level.
Apple is undoubtedly proud of the feature, as it reportedly plans to roll it out to all iPhone 15 models next year.