If there is one thing I like about iOS notifications, it's that they are now somewhat customizable and viewable from the lock screen. If your phone is locked and you receive some notifications, the display will light up and show all the new notifications directly from the lock screen, similarly to Notification Center. And a swipe from left to right on one of said notifications will open directly to the respective application and, most of the time, straight to the message or missed notification itself.

Android, however, has had a better notification system since day one. All notifications have always been aggregated to a universal notification shade that can be accessed by a swipe down from the top of the display. And recently, Google developers have added several new functions to the much-adored shade.

For example, swiping a notification left or right from the shade will dismiss the notification. A two-finger gesture downwards over a notification will expand said notification and reveal more information (if the developer of respective app added expanding notification abilities). Actions can be performed on some notifications, like screen captures, directly from the notification shade. And, as of Android 4.2, a two-finger gesture downward from the top of the display reveals a Quick Settings shade.

With the exception of a few mishaps that led to developers littering notification shades with advertisements, the Android notification system has always been a pleasure to use. It's definitely matured and become more aesthetically pleasing of late, but it has always been quite functional and true to its nature.

The one area where Android notifications come up a bit short, though, has always been on the lock screen. Unlike with iOS, if your Android device receives a notification while in standby, the display will not light up, and there are no immediately available notifications displayed upon hitting the power button. Some custom versions of Android will display missed calls and text messages on the lock screen in the form of an unopened envelope or red phone symbol, but there is little to no additional information viewable without having to unlock the device.

Most of the time, I don't immediately respond to missed notifications. Periodically, however, I do like to check what I've missed at a glance. And, as silly as it may sound, this is one of the main reasons I still carry the iPhone around with me. If I just want to glance at what I've missed, I can tap the iPhone power button spend a second or two reading and hit the button again.

For what it's worth, Google added the ability to access the notification shade from the lock screen in Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich). And in the most recent version, 4.2 (or Jelly Bean), lock screen widgets have been added to the mix, too.

However, this morning, Lifehacker featured a (relatively) new premium lock screen replacement for Android devices, LockerPro. Basically, it takes the information that would generally only be displayed in the notification shade and displays it on the lock screen, similarly to how iOS handles notifications in standby. A swipe from left to right will open the notification and a swipe in the other direction will dismiss. Or you can tap the Dismiss All (three staggered, horizontal lines) button in the upper left corner, if that's more your speed. Best of all, the display lights up when a message is received or a notification occurs.

LockerPro also works within the system while the display is on. It handles incoming notifications with banners, much like that of iOS or the old webOS notification system. Swiping a banner from left to right will dismiss the notification, swiping from right to left will dismiss all notifications and a tap will open the current notification.

For $2.86, it's not a bad deal, especially since I love how iOS handles lock screen notifications and this essentially gives me that experience on any Android devices. That said, I almost detest how much LockerPro looks like iOS – it would have been relatively easy to give it a unique interface. Not to mention, it's not as fluid or smooth as iOS (that's the app itself, not the phone) and has a few glitches I'm trying to get to the bottom of, such as duplicate notifications for some Twitter mentions and emails.

Still, I've tried a handful of lock screen replacements in my day, and LockerPro is easily the best one yet. It doesn't give me all sorts of lock screen utility that I don't want or need. It legitimately and appropriately addresses a problem with Android I've had for some time, and it does so with flying colors.

Update: I've come across one problem with this application. It replaces your launcher as the default launcher, which isn't a problem. It links directly to the launcher you're currently using anyway. But the issue is that is causes some hesitation when unlocking the device.

Do you use a lock screen replacement application like LockerPro or WidgetLocker, readers? Do you have a problem with the way Android handles lock screen notifications? Share your sentiments below!

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66 Reactions to this post

"What's your favorite thing about your Android phone?"

Please limit your reaction to 140 characters or use comments for a longer reply :)
Thanks for your participation! :)

Anonymous The freedom and layout.
Alex Teclaw
Alex Teclaw Layout and simplicity
Kyle Wraij
Kyle Wraij It is unique, original and revolutionary. Unlike the competition.
Jai Green
Jai Green Can someone please tell me where my call blocker feature is at its on the S3 but not the note2?
Timeka Vershae
Timeka Vershae Widgets!
Guillermo De León
Guillermo De León Freedom!!
Ayoub Hage
Ayoub Hage Live boobs wallpaper :p
Howie Eastin
Howie Eastin Personalization... Large screen for internet and typing.... And now with JB Google voice :)
Ben House
Ben House That its not an apple!
Paul Battle
Paul Battle It's still usable despite a newer model being released. And I still get updates, Samsung Galaxy Nexus :D
Albert Landicho
Albert Landicho My favorite thing about Android??? - it kicks iphone's butt!
Robert Futty
Robert Futty I love the new voice commands. I can now say certain things to take a picture, accept or reject phone calls and music voice commands. There's probably more in 4.1 for my sgs3 Idk yet so that's what I like
Justin Nelson
Justin Nelson If your favorite thing about your android is it's not an iPhone that's pretty fail in it's own right
David DiPilla
David DiPilla The iPhone is a great phone but its the same old thing over and over again with little improvements its out of date and android phones have way more to offer
Corey Stock
Corey Stock The fact that I am allowed to personalize a device I paid for.
Hector Gutierrez
Hector Gutierrez Just downloaded it on my ATRIX HD and i love it!
Timothy Parry Jr.
Timothy Parry Jr. Plus iPhone users on Verizon just got LTE android has had it forever
Ryan G. Bordner
Ryan G. Bordner It gives me the option to change my mind, and get the Lumia 920
Timothy Parry Jr.
Timothy Parry Jr. That its not restricted as much as an iPhone
Daniel Ayala
Daniel Ayala @Albert garcia u can download flash player from adobe's website no root required
Michael A. Lococo
Michael A. Lococo The fact that I would never use an Android phone!
Matthew Gonzales Landry
Matthew Gonzales Landry That I don't have one.
Eduard Lavrinovich
Eduard Lavrinovich its not ios :)
Ken Hoey
Ken Hoey Personalization!
Ken Hoey
Ken Hoey That it's not an iPhone!! Lol
Bobby Delaney
Bobby Delaney CM 10 nightly running 4.1.2 on my S3. My phone is mine and customized how I like it.
Rob Gamebred Miller
Rob Gamebred Miller No LED is better anyway
Aaron Couts
Aaron Couts its not a iphone, its rooted, its droid 3 running jelly bean
Trevor Loren
Trevor Loren Custom ROMs , root apps, launchers, widgets.
Markus Howard
Markus Howard U can still use flash on JB
Alberto Garcia Flores
Alberto Garcia Flores I wish it had flash player, I don't get why they stopped giving us that nice feature -_- does anybody knows and can explain me why would they do that??
David DiPilla
David DiPilla Widgets and customizable stuff
Luis Arturo Batista Aquino
Luis Arturo Batista Aquino Very user friendly interface
Joel Valladares
Joel Valladares Free will
Gary Bollinger
Gary Bollinger Mii big ass 5.3" display on mii Galaxy Note and also the fact that android has live wallpaper and that you can DOWNLOAD MUSIC STRAIGHT TO YOUR PHONE W-I-T-H-O-U-T A COMPUTER!!!!!!!!
Darwin Ayala
Darwin Ayala My s-pen
AK Sc Ice galaxy live wallpaper
Darren Penix
Darren Penix The fact that it jumped out I my pocket when I was on a roller coaster
Kyle Krause
Kyle Krause I have an iPhone though :/ hahhh
Gary Bowling
Gary Bowling 4.2, with Touch Whiz and Nova Launcher on s3.
Arturo Atherly
Arturo Atherly Its not an iPhone....
Glen Perez
Glen Perez Nice.... Just downloaded it to my Galaxy note 2...
John Xavier Anthony Ursabia
John Xavier Anthony Ursabia The live wallpaper is enough for my iPhone user classmates to drool on my Android phone... aahaha... And lots of other "customizable" stuffs!!!!
Amanda Michelle
Amanda Michelle Nfc :P
Marti Ruiz
Marti Ruiz screen customization widgets turn by tur n navigqtion for free n more
David Hilgendorf
David Hilgendorf Customizable.... Widgets: Just how I seen this post right on my home screen and lock screen. Very accessible without the need of opening apps. Can't forget about that great free navigation app called Google maps unlike somebody else's (cough, cough)
Razoan Moyen Arnob
Razoan Moyen Arnob the S voice sounds a lot more lively and responsive, Siri on the other hand sounds like a monotonic robot with a lot of stutter
Brandon Thompson
Brandon Thompson Don't have one...replaced my Razr with an iPhone 5. So glad i did
Anonymous Android? Ack.
Fonzy Paniagua
Fonzy Paniagua That It's not an iPhone.
Michael Myers
Michael Myers
Robert Centennial
Robert Centennial Android is garbage. Having an outdated phone 2 weeks after intro sucks fly nuts.
Lanh Nguyen
Lanh Nguyen lmao really black iphone 4s? Had to mention that it was black? LOL
Larry L Roe
Larry L Roe The fact how phones came along way phones R mini computers as well
Ian Baylon
Ian Baylon That I don't have "siri" stalking me
Joey Colossus Jenrette
Joey Colossus Jenrette my S-Pen on the Note 2
Dani Hayes
Dani Hayes That it's not an android
Michael Myers
Michael Myers The Jelly Bean 4.1.1 software with touch wiz. Galaxy S III.
Hooney Heoh
Hooney Heoh sigh. im still trying to trade my iPhone 5 for the Note II. Any way you can help me Aaron??
Rafay Vasti
Rafay Vasti being able to customize the homescreens and adding widgets.
Brian Edwards
Brian Edwards Root applications and custom ROMs. :-)
Bill Gillespie
Bill Gillespie
Ryan Meyer
Ryan Meyer Nothing, black iPhone 4S ftw!
Steven Basso
Steven Basso nothing old ass nexus s
Eric Hook
Eric Hook The fact that it's on backorder ahhhhhh
Maaz Ali
Maaz Ali Abbas Ul Hasan..

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