The battle between Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating system platforms has been going on for years now. Other platforms have tried to join the war, but they rarely get any traction. In the end, it’s always iOS vs Android. (I may be rewriting this in a year or 2 if Windows continues to gain momentum.)
When it comes to smartphone users, loyalties have already been forged and a line drawn on the sand. Considering how people use smartphones and tablets nowadays, someone who enjoys using both platforms (or doesn’t care) is a rare find. While it may be true that both Android and iOS cater to different segments of the market, that hasn’t stopped either mobile operating system developer from trying to lure users to their side. This is evident whenever Apple or Google rolls out one of their hyped-up, turbo-charged OS updates.
Sales and market shares aside, which OS platform reigns supreme in the battle between iOS and Android? Here’s a quick comparison.
One of the things people complain about when using Apple-made gadgets is that it’s one-size-fits-all. For the average user (who doesn’t know what “jailbreak” is), there is no way to customize the phone or tablet to match one’s personal preferences. On the other hand, Android users have the convenience of being able to tinker with their devices and customize them to their liking. Of course, the risk of bricking the smartphone is always there if one doesn’t know what he or she is doing.
On paper, the hardware on Apple devices is supposedly slower than the processors present in most gadgets that work on the Android OS, although this doesn’t mean a clear win for Google in the iOS vs Android wars. In reality, however, devices that run on iOS feel more fluid in terms of performance than their Android counterparts. The reason for this is that smartphone and tablet manufacturers often add their own tweaks to the software that often takes up a lot of internal memory space. No matter how fast a processor is, if the gadget is low on memory, lags are to be expected.
In the iOS vs Android battle, the OS platform created by Google is the clear winner in terms of options. iOS only comes with Apple devices as compared to Android where a user can choose from a variety of different brands and units (from entry-level to the latest and greatest) that carry the Android OS. This means that it is more accessible to people and users can stick with brands they trust or choose a different brand of smartphone or tablet without having to worry about adapting to another OS interface.
Apple’s range of iPhones and iPads have always had a high price tag compared to many of the Android devices available from the likes of Samsung, Motorola, the Nexus and other manufacturers using the Android operating system. While the Android devices are cheaper, don’t expect the same build quality that you would get with an iPhone or an iPad.
Users look forward to the annual updates for their iPhones, iPads, and iPod touch devices. There’s really no guessing whether a new update is coming or not. Firmware updates on Android devices are a different story, however. Users often have to wait longer for a firmware update even if Google has already announced the roll out of the upgrade. This is because phone and tablet manufacturers release these updates at their own pace. For some, the firmware update may come a little bit too late and for other users, it may not even come at all if the manufacturer decides to discontinue firmware support on the device.
Android is an open source software, meaning anyone can have access to the code that drives the operating system. This has lead to numerous cases of hackers taking advantage of security flaws in the software. The Google Play Store is also open for anyone to upload apps, which may contain malware and viruses. You need to be careful with what you decide to install on your device, as well as look into running some sort of anti virus. Apple does not have this problem to the same degree. Yes they have had some issues, but it is less prevalent. You can read the info for yourself.
It’s hard to declare a clear winner in the battle. Each OS has its own hits and misses. In the end, the choice between iOS vs Android depends solely on the users and what they are willing to put up with to get the performance they want from their gadgets.
Personally I have been using Apple products for a few years now and love how they integrate so well, but some of Samsung’s new phones are quite attractive in terms of pricing and specs. Who knows, I may be up for the switch soon!