Android vs. iOS: Which Mobile OS Is Best for you? (Explained 2021)

In the era of mobile technologies, did anyone guess what is the core thing in this next-gen smartphone or who plays a vital role in this era? Yes, It’s an OPERATING SYSTEM(OS), an OS plays a very important role in all the smartphones available in the market. There are many types of Operating systems available in the market like Android (Google), iOS (Apple), Bada (Samsung), Blackberry OS (Research in Motion), Windows OS (Microsoft), Symbian OS (Nokia), Tizen (Samsung), etc. But here we will study two major OSes that change the market completely that is ANDROID and iOS.

The fight is between these two operating systems Android vs. iOS. All the alternatives are pretty much dead and buried. Microsoft, for example, recently admitted, “We had no material Phone revenue this quarter.” BlackBerry exists only as a brand name, and the manufacturer making “BlackBerry” phones is now using Android. So today, and for as far as we can see into the future, our only real choices are Android smartphones and iPhones(iOS).

These two Operating Systems (android and ios) have an important place in this smartphone industry! Where Android was owned by Google and iOS is owned by Apple inc. Today in this article we will see what are the differences between Android and iOS as well as what are the pros and cons of android and iOS Operating Systems!

iOS (iPhone Operating System)

What is an iOS? An iOS stands for the iPhone Operating System created and developed by Apple Inc, exclusively for its hardware such as iPhone. First introduced on 29 June 2007, iOS powers many of the company’s mobile devices, including the iPhone and iPod Touch. The term also included the versions running on iPads until the name iPadOS was introduced with version 13 in 2019. It is the world’s second-most widely installed mobile operating system, after Android, in short, the iOS is used a lot and only lags behind Android in terms of popularity. It is the basis for three other operating systems made by Apple: iPadOS, tvOS, and watchOS. It is proprietary software, although some parts of it are open source under the Apple Public Source License and other licenses.

Android OS

What is Android? Android is a mobile operating system based on a modified version of the Linux kernel and other open source software. It’s designed primarily for touchscreen mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Android is developed by a consortium of developers known as the Open Handset Alliance and commercially sponsored by Google. It was unveiled in November 2007, And the first commercial Android device launched in September 2008.

It is free and open source software: Android OS source code is known as Android Open Source Project (AOSP), which is primarily licensed under the Apache License. However, most Android devices ship with additional proprietary software pre-installed. Most notably Google Mobile Services (GMS) which includes core apps such as Google Chrome, the digital distribution platform Google Play and associated Google Play Services development platform. About 70 percent of Android smartphones run Google’s ecosystem.

Difference between Android vs iOS

So far we understand iOS developed by apple Inc and Android developed by Google inc are mobile operating systems that control the device, helps to run other application software on mobile devices. Now come to the point, what is the core difference between iOS and Android?

There are lots of differences and pros and cons between these two popular mobile operating systems where iOS is a closed source and Android is open for everyone. iOS is exclusive for Apple devices where Android OS is available for many manufacturers.

Android vs iOS Interface

What is an interface? A mobile user interface (mobile UI) is the graphical and usually touch-sensitive display on a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet, that allows the user to interact with the device’s apps, features, content and functions. Both iOS INTERFACE as well as Android OS is good enough UI.

iOS

The iOS user interface is based upon direct manipulation, using multi-touch gestures such as swipe, tap, pinch, and reverse pinch. Interface control elements include sliders, switches, and buttons. Internal accelerometers are used by some applications to respond to shaking the device (one common result is the undo command) or rotating it in three dimensions (one common result is switching between portrait and landscape mode). Various accessibility described in Accessibility functions enable users with vision and hearing disabilities to properly use iOS

On earlier iPhones with the home button, screenshots can be created with the simultaneous press of the home and power buttons. In comparison to Android OS, which requires the buttons to be held down, a short press does suffice on iOS. On the more recent iPhones which lack a physical home button, screenshots are captured using the volume-down and power buttons instead.

Android

Android’s default user interface is mainly based on direct manipulation. (In computer science, direct manipulation is a human-computer interaction style that involves the continuous representation of objects of interest and rapid, reversible, and incremental actions and feedback.) Using touch inputs that loosely correspond to real-world actions, like swiping, tapping, pinching, and reverse pinching to manipulate on-screen objects, along with a virtual keyboard. Game controllers and full-size physical keyboards are supported via Bluetooth or USB. The response to user input is designed to be immediate and provides a fluid touch interface, often using the vibration capabilities of the device to provide haptic feedback to the user.

Internal hardware, such as accelerometers, gyroscopes and proximity sensors are used by some applications to respond to additional user actions, for example adjusting the screen from portrait to landscape depending on how the device is oriented or allowing the user to steer a vehicle in a racing game by rotating the device, simulating control of a steering wheel.

iOS vs Android source code

If there’s something everything seems to agree on, it’s that Google’s Android is more “open” and Apple’s iOS is a more “closed” operating system. Here’s what is the meaning of that! And how it’s concerned with you!

An iOS is a closed source!

Apple devices are known to be very user-friendly, but if you are a software or application developer an Apple product may not be the choice for you. Apple’s IOS operating system is closed source, meaning users can’t freely access the source code. To develop apps for Apple devices you have to pay a developer fee to create applications and publish them to the Apple App Store, but features like widgets, sharing between apps, apps running in the background, and third-party keyboards have now arrived in iOS. If you want to make your entire home screen and lock screen work in a different way, you’ll need an Android phone. But iOS offers a lot of flexibility without going completely overboard.

Android OS is an open-source!

The official definition of Open Source is denoting software for which the original source code is made freely available and may be redistributed and modified. Android is a great example of an Open Source operating system (others examples are ubuntu, linux, etc.). Android allows its users to develop their own apps freely. Historically, Android phones have been more flexible. Android apps have access to a full file system, can communicate each other via the Share feature, change the home screen launcher, swap out your keyboard, set themselves as default apps, and do many, many other things.

Also read: Differences Between Open Source and Closed Source 

iOS vs Android application

A mobile application also referred to as a mobile app or simply an app is a computer program or software application designed to run on a mobile device such as a phone, tablet, or watch. Here we will see different applications available in iOS and Android!

iOS

iOS devices come with preinstalled apps developed by Apple including Mail, Maps, TV, Music, FaceTime, Wallet, Health, and many more. They are downloaded from the official catalog of the App Store digital store, where apps are subjected to security checks before being made available to users. Over the years, the Apple Store apps surpassed multiple major milestones, including 50,000, 100,000, 250,000, 500,000, 1 million, and 2 million apps, but still the numbers are behind Android.

Applications for iOS are mostly built using components of UIKit, a programming framework. It allows applications to have a consistent look and feel with the OS, nevertheless offering customization.

ANDROID

Many, to almost all, Android devices come with pre-installed Google apps including Gmail, Google Maps, Google Chrome, YouTube, Google Play Music, Google Play Movies & TV, and many more. And its growing selection of third-party applications, which can be acquired by users by downloading and installing the application’s APK (Android application package) file, or by downloading them using an application store program that allows users to install, update, and remove applications from their devices which is not possible in the case of Apple iOS as it’s a closed source. In December 2014, Google released Android Studio, based on IntelliJ IDEA, as its primary IDE for Android application development. Other development tools are available, including a native development kit (NDK) for applications or extensions in C or C++, Google App Inventor, a visual environment for novice programmers, and various cross-platform mobile web applications frameworks.

Android users are having much more apps as compared to iOS, with over 2.87 million applications available through the Google Play Store.

Android vs iOS AI ASSISTANTS or software bots

An AI (artificial intelligence) assistant also called a Virtual assistant or digital assistant is an application program that understands natural language voice commands and completes tasks for the user. Both iOS as well as Android has their AI assistants namely Siri and Google assistant respectively

How does an intelligent personal assistant work?

A virtual assistant is a technology based on artificial intelligence. When a user asks a personal assistant to perform a task, the natural language audio signal is converted into digital data that can be analyzed by the software.

iOS Siri

Siri is an intelligent personal assistant integrated into iOS. The assistant uses voice queries and a natural language user interface to answer questions, make recommendations, and perform actions by delegating requests to a set of Internet services. The software adapts to users’ individual language usages, searches, and preferences, with continuing use. Returned results are individualized.

ANDROID Google Assistant

Google Assistant is an artificial intelligence–powered virtual assistant developed by Google that is primarily available on mobile and smart home devices. Unlike the company’s previous virtual assistant, Google Now, the Google Assistant can engage in two-way conversations

According to research, Google Assistant understood every single query they asked and answered correctly 92.9 percent of the time. Siri understood 99.8 percent of the questions and answered 83.1 percent correctly.

While, Apple’s Siri is the Most Popular Virtual Assistant With a 35 Percent Market Share.

iOS vs Android security and privacy

In today’s era Security and Privacy both matters a lot, here’s a short comparison of how Android and iOS keep their customer’s data secured.

IOS

iOS utilizes many security features in both hardware and software to secure customer data. Some of them are Secure Boot, Secure Enclave, Face ID(on iPhone models X, XS, XS Max, XR, 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, 12, 12 Mini, 12 Pro, and 12 Pro Max), Passcode, Touch ID(iPhones with 2013’s iPhone 5S, and has been included on every subsequent iPhone until it was replaced with Face ID on the iPhone X.), Address Space Layout Randomization, App Security, Keychain, Non-Executable Memory, Encryption, App Store bypasses, Two-Factor Authentication, Network Security.

ANDROID

In 2020, Google launched the Android Partner Vulnerability Initiative to improve the security of Android. They also formed an Android security team. Below are some points on which they try to secure customer data

Scope of surveillance by public institutions, Common security threats, Technical security features, Up to date security patches, Regular android updates.

However, In some circles, Apple’s iOS operating system has long been considered the more secure of the two operating systems. Android is more often targeted by hackers, too, because the operating system powers so many mobile devices today. And as we all know android is open-source so it’s more often liked by Hacker, while iOS is a closed source which creates difficulties to a third party!

Android vs iOS pros and cons

Why iOS is better?  You’re invested in Apple’s ecosystem. This might seem like a shallow reason, but Apple obviously makes a wide breadth of tech products, and if you already own a Mac, iPad or Apple Watch, getting an iPhone makes a lot of sense

The third-party apps are just better. This one is definitely down to personal preference, but as someone who has jumped back and forth between iOS and Android as long as both platforms have existed, I’ve been consistently blown away by the quality of apps built by iOS developers, and mostly disappointed in their Android counterparts.

There’s no bloatware. No matter how you buy your iPhone, where you buy it from or what iPhone you buy, you won’t see any bloatware preinstalled when you boot it up for the first time. That means it’s clean from the very start.

You get quicker software updates. Android phones get fewer updates than iPhones, and when they do, they happen less frequently and are often delayed.

Why Android is better? There are phones at every price. The vast majority of the world’s smartphones run Android, and because so many companies build Android handsets, they’re available at every price range. This type of price range cannot be seen in case of iOS.

It’s more customizable. Though both iOS and Android have evolved over the years, Android has always had a reputation for being the platform for users who like to tinker and personalize their devices.

USB-C is universal. Android phones largely rely on USB-C ports for charging and data transfer these days, which is super convenient if you’re one of those people who really like to pack light and carry only one cable

Innovative features usually land on Android phones first, Android partners tend to beat Apple to the market with innovations in the mobile space. Wireless charging, fast charging, NFC, 4G LTE, 5G, OLED displays, in-screen fingerprint sensors, water resistance and multilens cameras all landed on Android devices before iPhones.

Android vs iOS market share

If we compare Android vs iOS market share, the Android operating system dominates the competition. According to Statcounter, Android enjoyed a 72.48 percent share of the global market, while Apple’s iOS holds a mere 26.91 percent.

Source: StatCounter Global Stats – OS Market Share

Which Mobile OS is best iOS or android?

So then which Mobile operating system is better between iOS and Android? Both platforms have pros and cons, but it depends upon the customer that what he/she values the most!

Owning an iPhone OS is a simpler, more convenient experience, Apple’s iPhone represents the single most popular brand of smartphone. Android-device ownership is a bit harder in those respects. Yet it’s simultaneously more freeing because it offers more choice, like how much you want to spend, choice of hardware and software features, and choice in how you organize and personalize your experience. If you’re extremely particular about the technology you use, you might find Android more liberating and useful. If you’re wondering which particular device or OS you should switch to, so it totally depends upon you, Whichever device you pick, just make sure it fits with your operating system preferences.

CONCLUSION

●     iOS is a closed system whereas Android is more open. Users have barely any system permissions in iOS but in Android, users can customize their phones easily.

●     Android software is available for many manufacturers such as Samsung, LG etc. and this may lead to some quality problems in the cheaper phones. However, iOS is strictly controlled by Apple and there is no quality problem as there are few models.

●     The Android applications are obtained from Google Play while iOS applications are available in the Apple app store.

●     Integration with other devices is better in Apple iOS as compared to Google Android.

●     The running speed of iOS devices remains consistent with time. In contrast to this, the performance of Android devices may decline over time.

Some of the similarities between iOS and Android are as follows

●     The basic functions in iOS and Android are alike. Both the iOS and Android phones have calling, messaging, web browsing, video chat, maps, voice commands etc.

●     The user interfaces of iOS and Android have a lot of similarities. Both of these support swiping, tapping, pinch and zoom etc on their phone screens

●     4G cellular network can be enjoyed on both iOS and Android devices. This is very important as cellular networks are crucial for internet surfing.

Also read:

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