iOS or Android?
Android or iOS?
There has been a long debate towards the selection of
‘iPhone or Android’. However, the
two are often times mistaken for the same thing. The iPhone is a phone; Android is an
OS – TWO COMPLETELY DIFFERENT THINGS.
The iPhone was introduced along with iOS, a new evolution of mobile computing. iOS is
often praised for its simplicity as well as its unique functionality, but many iPhone users
are so focused in on purchasing a brand name that they refuse to experiment other
mobile OS’s. Within my own experience of using a variety of devices and platforms,
there is a lot that is ignored about Android. iOS users often claim the superiority of
iPhone because of its simple user interface, simple features, and overall usability.
I’m here to tell you that these reasons are completely self defeating when it comes to the
comparison of iOS and Android.
The phone itself
One of the most common arguments I’ve heard was that the iPhone is fast and that Android phones
were not. In fact, they were wrong. They compared two different pieces of hardware: a
flagship device from Apple against a cheap carrier phone that uses Android. If such
comparison is to be made, it is an automatic win for iOS. Truth is, people need to
compare flagship devices. The validity of the comparison then can be rightfully justified.
I will be using the Nexus 5 made by Google compared to Apple’s Flagship: the iPhone
5S. Even when considering two flagships, the price difference of the device is large, if anything,
huge. Both unlocked and with 16GB, the iPhone is priced at $720, while the Nexus 5 is
priced at $350. Price is another factor when choosing iOS over Android.
Usability degrades as iOS is updated from generation to generation, the last supporting
version of iOS leaves the device at a state where it becomes a pain to use. The yearly
hardware upgrades by Apple is the only way iOS would be supported. As a result, the
new features may not be offered on your device 3 years down the road.
The physical appearances is won by Apple. They always design their device to be a
premium device – one that is affordable by a middle class member given an arm and a
leg. Reparability is shot down with the fragile glued front panel LCD’s, in which repairs by
a 13 year old would cost a fortune.
The Nexus line of devices may be true as well, but as for software support, the Android
OS wins by far. Compared to Apple, you can modify your device to run the latest
version of Android. With Apple, you are stuck with what you have – with a slim chance of
downgrading, and no chance of upgrading.
The targeted audience
There is a debate of iOS vs Android because there are different people for their
respective mobile OS. Within the commercials marketed by Apple, the users are often
children, old people, and family members using iPads, iPods and whatnot, to play games
and connect with each other. With iOS, the idea of smartphone is dumbed down to a level where people believe they are capable of using a “smartphone”, but rather, it seems as if they are incapable of using a real smartphone. The purpose of a smartphone is to mimic the purpose of a computer: to check email, surf, develop, and be productive. The purpose however, is achieved by Android. If the decision made to choose Apple’s iOS solely because of its simplicity, then Apple has achieved this criteria by making a smartphone into a child’s toy – it is simply something to enjoy by looking and playing with it. Eye candy.
But these users are so invested in the iOS ecosystem, stating that iMessage is essential to the consumption of mobile computing, as well as iPhoto, or iCloud. They are so amazed by late “innovations” of technology that already exists (FaceTime). They ignore what Android has to offer solely due to the fact that it is so simple to use.
Such simplicity is only produced when the functionality is restricted. As a result of the simplicity, many other features that iOS can support are disabled. For example, file sharing. The only way to access, edit, or open a word document on iOS (iPhone or iPad) is to open the files via email. However, another option is made viable by Google: Google drive/docs. Oh, how ironic. Google also develops Android. Google doesn’t only offer powerful word processing tools, but also offers device backup, Hangouts, and ‘Hangouts’ for video calling. A little time later, Apple has decided to release their mobile cloud word processing tool – following Google’s footsteps. Talk about late innovation. Mind you, iWorks came at a cost when released. Google Docs on the other hand, did not.
Although such simplicity may not be a disadvantage, it refers back to the question: iOS or Android? I firmly believe that iOS is meant for simplistic people who have no desire to increase their learning curve a tad bit to experience a whole other level of mobile computing. When teaching the elderly how to FaceTime, it is quite easy. Same goes for Android. The main point is that there is less to do on iOS, which leads to less learning to do. Vice versa.
Customizing your device has always been a unique way of making a device feel like yours. Of course theming is a big part of customization. Changing wallpapers is another. Having what you want as your homescreen is fantasy. However, with Android, all of these things are reality. Widgets, themes, and predictive suggestions is offered within Android natively. iOS? You can do as much as changing the wallpaper and rearranging icons on a 4×5 grid.
I have used an iOS device for an extended period of time. My first iPod in grade 9, my last in grade 11. I have went through at least 5 iDevices, bashing Google Android in the meantime. I have broken the previous 4, but continued to purchase the iOS device. During that time, I experimented Google’s Android OS (2.3 gingerbread). It was slow, it was clunky, it was special. After receiving an Android tablet in grade 11, I was suddenly amazed by how far Android has gone from being a rusty bike to a newly reworked engine. The more I use Android, the more capable I am at doing things – because the OS allows me to!
iOS was perfect for me: I could play an abundant amount of games. But I realized…. Android could do the same. I used notes in iOS to take notes in class. I now use a fully capable word processor on Android.
I did not intend on bashing iOS in favor of Android, but it was nearly impossible to give praise now that Apple is only copying old ideas and rebranding it as “Revolutionary”. iOS, is unfortunately a retro version of Android.
Notifications? From bubbles to a pulldown menu. Who was first? Android. Multitasking. Android. Panoramic photos? Android. Predictive calling? Android. Synced web pages? Android. I’m sorry iOS for leaving you, but your Siri was like a broken girlfriend. She never understands.
iOS or Android?
iOS for little kids, simple people, and respectfully the older generation.
Android for power users and real smartphone users.
Originally posted 2013-11-13 00:36:04. Republished by Blog Post Promoter