Summary of “How China rips off the iPhone and reinvents Android”

Many experienced Android users in the West who try out Chinese phones, including reviewers here at The Verge, often find themselves unable to get over an immediate stumbling block: the software.
These were unlocked versions of each company’s new flagship phones that went on sale through Google’s Play Store, and their biggest feature was a lack of features; they ran a version of Android completely devoid of their manufacturers’ software customizations.
To put it another way, Chinese Android phones don’t really run superficial skins like TouchWiz; they run whole new operating systems that happen to support Android apps.
In China, making your phone work like the iPhone makes a certain degree of sense With that in mind, making your phone’s basic user interface work just like the iPhone – particularly in a country with notoriously lax IP laws, and in a world that got bored of Apple and Samsung’s legal disputes years ago – makes a certain degree of sense.
Many of these phones apply techniques to brighten faces and smooth out skin, and I asked Xiaomi’s Wang Qian, who works on MIUI’s photo software, to what extent the company considers users outside China with these features.
Software optimizations mean that with the exception of Google’s Pixel phones, OnePlus is the only company that can touch the iPhone in terms of responsiveness and smoothness.
What is true today is that not all Chinese phone software is bad. And when it is bad from a Western perspective, it’s often bad for very different reasons than the bad Android skins of the past.
Yes, many of these phones make similar mistakes with overbearing UI decisions – hello, Huawei – and yes, it’s easy to mock some designs for their obvious thrall to iOS. But these are phones created in a very different context to Android devices as we’ve previously understood them.

The orginal article.