Google Android and Apple iOS are compared often. They both are operating systems used particularly in smartphones, and sometimes in tablets and laptops. Both the systems have their advantages. However, shifting from iOS to Android can be difficult. So, you should take care of it while buying either of the leading mobile OS.
There are a lot of things that you should consider before choosing between Android and iOS. Knowing the features, advantages, and disadvantages can help you choose the best device for yourself. To help you out, we have made an in-depth analysis of both the mobile operating systems in one place.
What is Android?
Android is a Linux-based mobile operating system. It has been developed for touchscreen mobile devices by Open Handset Alliance and sponsored by Google.
In October 2003, Android Inc. was founded by Andy Rubin in California. Thus, began the journey of android to becoming the world’s most commonly used smartphone platform. It was then in August of 2005 when Google took over and now Android is a subsidiary of Google Incorporation.
Android was intended to be for cameras. However, a low market for cameras led to the shift to smartphones. In 2007, Google declared the development of Android OS which led to the launching of the first android mobile in 2008.
- Intuitive user interface
- Media support
- Web browser
- Resizable widgets
- Multi-language Support
- Wifi direct
- Universal Charger: Android devices use a standardized micro USB connection for their chargers. Therefore, you can easily find a charger that suits your device anywhere.
- More Choices: Android offers a wide range of phones to its users. Consequently, you can choose a phone which suits your work the best along with your budget.
- Removable Battery and Storage: Android devices usually come with SD card slots, which are expandable. So, you don’t have to worry about storage and space issues. Android batteries are often removable too, which allows you to simply replace the battery instead of the phone in case of any issues.
- Countless App Choices: Android doesn’t restrict you to buy from just the Play Store. You can buy apps from different places, such as Amazon. It not only provides you with limitless options but also greater access to different apps.
Android applications refer to any software app built for the Android platform. Different developers can make their apps available through their websites. However, there is a designated online store for these applications.
The Google Play Store offers both free and paid android applications. As we discussed above, there are countless Android apps for you to choose from. So, you won’t be disappointed.
What is iOS?
Previously known as iPhone OS, iOS is a mobile operating system created and developed by Apple Inc. The system can be found in most of the mobile devices from Apple. It falls just after Android and is known as the second most commonly used mobile operating system.
In June 2007, Apple launched iOS with the very first iPhone. From its first version to its latest, Apple has made many changes in the system. During summer every year, Apple comes forward to reinvent iOS by making it better and adding more features.
It was Steve Jobs who introduced the first iPhone along with iOS. In 2021, Apple released its iOS 14.4 and that’s how much the system has been improved.
- The voice assistant, Siri
- Widget Gallery
- Picture in picture
- Search suggestions
- Quick launcher
- Gaming: The games offered by iOS are top-notch. Moreover, you can get the best gaming experience on an iOS device. iOS takes special care of its gaming experience and offers only those games that do not have any coding issues.
- Security: There is a strict approval process through which apps have to pass, only then are they available to iOS users. Besides, iOS allows you to guard your phone through face lock and fingerprints as well.
- Better Camera: iOS devices are popularly known for the camera quality they offer. There is an option for you to capture pics in different modes. You can even click live pictures and edit them.
- Media and Storage: The display of iOS ensures clear viewing of media. The storage offered is enough to store everything you wish to. Besides, you can get more space through iCloud services as well.
Similar to Android, iOS has its dedicated application market called App Store. It allows users to install free and paid applications. The developers of iOS usually work with computer languages, such as Objective-C, C++ and Swift. Anyways, many apps allow you to build an iOS application without the use of these computer languages.
Although both Android and iOS are quite different from each other, here are some of the similarities:
- The basic functions in both of the leading mobile operating systems are quite the same. Both iOS and Android offer calling, messaging, sharing location, voice commands, downloading of applications, video calls, etc.
- The user interface isn’t too distinct as well. Both of these operating systems allow you to pinch, tap, swipe and zoom the phone screens.
- The status bar is there on both devices to check the internet speed, see battery percentage, enable auto-rotate, adjust brightness and do many other things.
- You can enjoy fast 4G speed on both Android and iOS platforms. They both support 4G and connection to wifi.
- Both of these systems do not fall short of security. You are guaranteed the privacy and safety of data through permissions.
Android vs iOS: Comparison based on Various Factors
- Interface: iOS and Android, both allow the use of a touch interface. However, an iOS home screen contains app icons only. On the other hand, Android supports widgets. These widgets show auto-updating details, such as email and weather.
- User Experience: Both the operating systems vary greatly in user experience. However, you may find the experience of some apps to be the same. To make it simpler we have listed the exclusive features of both mobile operating systems.
- Modification of homes screen allowed.
- File management.
- Expandable storage.
- Multiple accounts and guest users.
- Inbuilt sharing of wifi passwords.
- App offloading.
- Setup of new devices made easy.
- Software Upgrades: iOS users get better advantages with software updates as Apple allows all the devices the same updates.
On the other hand, Android users do not have this advantage even though Google releases the update for all users. The phone manufacturers get the upper hand to facilitate the upgrade or not.
- Availability of Apps: As discussed before, Android gets its apps from the Play Store, while iOS gets it from the App Store. Although most of the popular apps are present on both the app stores, there are some apps that you will find exclusively for iOS i.e. not available on Android and vice-versa.
- Device Selection: You can get android on multiple devices except for Apple devices. On the other side, iOS is restricted to only Apple devices. Therefore, android facilitates a wide range of devices selection for you to choose from, unlike iOS.
- Call Features: Android offers self-composed texts which can be sent while declining a call. There are some auto-made texts and customizable ones too. On the contrary, iOS allows you to reply to a phone call with a canned text message.
- Messaging and Video call: GTalk is there for android users for instant messages. iOS offers iMessage, but it works between iOS users only.
The same goes for video calls, iOS users are offered Facetime but it is only available for iOS users. While Android has Google Hangouts which can be used by anyone.
- Voice Commands: Siri is the virtual voice assistant used by iOS users. Through the help of Siri, you can make calls, send texts, search for something over the internet, schedule calendar events, and much more. Android has a similar voice assistant known as Google Now. It is almost exactly similar to Siri.
- Mobile Payment: Google Wallet is there for Android users to make online payments. The NFC chip present in android devices makes contactless payments. However, the NFC chip is not supported by all android devices.
Apple Pay is used by iOS users to make payments. The app is user-friendly and usually considered to have greater security. iOS also offers Passbook which is an app to collect reward cards and add credit/debit cards.
- Security and Privacy: Android is considered less vulnerable to bugs as its applications are isolated from other system resources. However, these devices are prone to widespread malware.
iOS, on the opposite, has strict reviewing policies, so this malware is unlikely to spread on iOS devices. But, apps downloaded from outside can put a risk to your safety on an iOS.
When it comes to privacy, both systems are at a risk. Your apps are to be blamed for privacy as many apps have the permission to get a list of details. You can either not use such apps which you believe to be a threat or you can limit granting permissions.
- Building and Publishing Applications: Android applications use C++, C and Java. Anyone can download the source code. So, it is an open platform, which means anyone can develop android apps for free.
However, the developers do have to pay a registration fee of $25. Further, users can download it for free too and you can get apps from outside the Play Store. Unlike Android, iOS developers have to pay a fee of $99 every year to get access to the iOS Desk and publishing apps on the Apple Store.
- Maps and Web Browsing: Maps is an app available for both Android and iOS. However, the features presented by Maps on iOS surpasses its Android counterpart. Moreover, Apple also has its maps app which comes with every Apple device since iOS 6.
When it comes to a web browser, both systems have their own web browsers. While iOS has Safari, Android has Google Chrome. Both web browsers are the best in business.
But, people are still more familiar with Google Chrome as it can work on both iOS and Android, and is the most used desktop browser too.
Android vs iOS: Head to Head Comparison
|Developers||Google and Open Handset Alliance||Apple Inc.|
|Release Date||September 23, 2008||July 29, 2007|
|Latest Version||Android 11||iOS 14.1 and iPadOS 14.1|
|Source Model||Open-source||Closed with open-source components|
|File Transfer||Easier as compared to iOS. Through the USB port and Android File Transfer desktop apps and photos can be transferred with the help of a USB without apps.||Difficult. Media files can be shared using the iTunes desktop app. Photos can be transferred out via USB without apps.|
|Video Call||via Google Hangouts||via FaceTime|
|App Store and Affordability||Play Store offers 2,000,000+ apps. Other app stores like Amazon and Aptoide also facilitate installing Android apps. (“APKs”).|
Apps containing viruses are rare, but existing.
|App Store has around 1,000,000+ apps. Apps containing viruses are very rare, as almost non-existent.|
|Battery Life and Management||Many but not all Android phone manufacturers are equipping their devices with large batteries with extended life.||Apple batteries are generally not as big as the largest Android batteries. Nevertheless, Apple can squeeze a decent battery life through hardware/software optimizations.|
|Media Backup||Apps are available for an automatic backup of photos and videos. Google Photos permits unlimited backup of photos and videos at a compressed quality. OneDrive, Amazon Photos and Dropbox are the available alternatives.||Up to 5 GB of photos and videos can be automatically backed up with iCloud, with more paid iCloud storage available through subscription. All other vendors like Google, Amazon, Dropbox, Flickr and Microsoft have auto-backup apps for both iOS and Android.|
|Security||Monthly security updates. Android software patches are available frequently. Manufacturers tend to slow down these updates. So at any given time, a vast majority of Android devices are running on outdated OS software.||Occasional security updates. Security threats are rare because iOS is locked and downloading apps out of the App Store is complex.|
|Cloud Services||Native integration with Google Drive storage. 15GB free, $2/mo for 100GB, 1TB for $10/mo. Apps available for Amazon Photos, OneDrive and Dropbox.||Native integration with iCloud. 5GB free, 50GB for $1/mo, 200GB for $3/mo, 1TB for $10/mo. Apps available for Google Drive and Google Photos, Amazon Photos, OneDrive and Dropbox.|
|Headphone Jack||Some current Android smartphones and many don’t.||None on iPhone 7 and later, 3.5mm no longer comes with a phone after iPhone XS|
|Jailbreaking||Access and complete control over your device are available and you can unlock the bootloader.||Complete control over your device is not available.|
|File Manager||Yes. (Stock Android File Manager included on devices running Android 7.1.1 and later.)||Files app, limited and less useful (iOS 12).|
|Call and Messaging||Google Messages. 3rd- party apps like Messenger, WhatsApp, Google Duo, Discord and Skype all work on Android and iOS.||iMessage, FaceTime (with other Apple devices only). 3rd-party apps like Google Hangouts, Messenger, WhatsApp, Google Duo, Discord and Skype all work on Android and iOS.|
|Web Mapping||Google Maps||Apple Maps (default), Google Map via separate app download.|
|Virtual Assistant||Google Assistant||Siri|
Who is the Best?
Android and iOS both come with their pros and cons. What is best for you is what suits you the most. The efficiency of both mobile operating systems depends upon what you expect from them. Therefore, before you choose between Android or iOS, you should look at their pros and cons to see what would work the best for you.
If you are someone looking for a device that works smoothly without lagging, you should go for Android. I personally believe Android is way more user-friendly than iOS. Moreover, Android is better with storage.
While iOS does provide you with several updates, you would need storage for them and storage is often the major issue with iOS. Nonetheless, if you still want to go for iOS, you should invest in a tablet rather than a phone.
In addition to what was said above, Android has come to gather a lot of users for itself. It is indeed the most preferred mobile operating system. Because of its connectivity to Google, Android has time and again proved to be easier to use and more useful. Many people who have switched from iOS to Android have found Android to be better.
Android and iOS are the top two operating systems for mobile platforms. While Android is a subsidiary of Google, iOS is developed by Apple. There are many aspects of both these operating systems that are quite similar.
For instance, they both have the same basic functions, user interface, status bar and security features. Although they are quite similar in many aspects, Android and iOS vary greatly.
They are different in many aspects, such as device selection, voice commands, messaging, video calling, building and publishing applications, maps, and web browsing.
Despite all the pros and cons mentioned, Android truly comes out as the best operating system for mobile platforms because of its easily understandable interface and customization. Moreover, Android has a wide audience which is there to guarantee its effectiveness.
Now you know everything there is to know about Android vs iOS. Be it while buying a new device or simply flaunting your tech knowledge in front of your friend, this analysis will always help. That was all. You are ready to choose your operating system, now!