There are two sides to every good competition, sometimes more than two sides. In the case of smartphone operating systems the front running match up is still Android vs iOS.
Disclaimer: All of this can be debated until we’re red in the face, skip to the end to find out the clear winner and perhaps you’ll feel better before commenting.
I’ve been living with both operating systems for a better part of a year and now I am using an iPhone 6 Plus and a Nexus 6 in daily use. I purposely have chosen to use both operating systems to see if I could determine which one actually works best and which one would be the clear definitive winner. One of the first things that I’ve come to realize when it comes to mobile phone users is, we don’t all use our devices in the same way.
Some of us require extreme multitasking abilities while some of us just require getting that cool picture up on Instagram. The range of uses is wide and vast as is the way one thinks the OS should be navigated. There’s also an extreme opinion (on both sides) on how a mobile OS should work and what the user experience should be like. Furthermore there are those users who feel the need to control what their smartphone can and can’t do for them and then there (really) are those users who don’t want to think about that.
Thumbs Up To
iOS gets the clear thumbs up for having a slight edge on quality of apps, primarily due to two factors. Apple’s iron fist when it comes to apps that can be approved on the App Store and the fact that (currently) apps sold on the Apple App Store sell much better and make more for developers (per app) than the respective Google versions.
Android gets the clear thumbs up for multitasking and navigation through the OS. Apple has tried to make multi-tasking work on iOS but Android just does it a bit better and that’s OK. From what I have seen, iOS users aren’t really all that worried about multi-tasking and are pretty content with the way iOS works for them.
iOS gets the clear thumbs up for better creative apps such as video and photo editing. The apps available on iOS for content creation are stunning. Some of them are being made available on Android as well but for now the bulk of the really good creative apps are on iOS. Of course it’s not accurate to say only iOS users are creative people, but app developers seem to concentrate their best creative apps to the iOS platform and that’s why iOS gets the thumbs up.
Screens, specs, cameras, battery life and performance. Let’s face it. Both high end Android phones (like the Nexus 6) and the iPhone are in a deadlock when it comes to this. For the most part this is exactly what all users are looking for. A nice screen, good specs, great camera, great battery life and outstanding performance. All of which is delivered well in any high end Android device and iOS device. So thumbs up to both platforms for being competitive in those departments.
The Definite Winner
So who comes out on top? Who is the winner in the Android vs iOS war? Which one do I think is the best?
The clear and definite winner in this competition is… you. You, the user, are the winner in this wild and crazy smartphone competition that never seems to end (which is a good thing). Why? Because you have choices. Choices between two amazing operating systems that do things good and do things bad. You are left to decide what it is you want from a smartphone and in the end if that choice is what works best for you, then you’ve made the correct decision.
As I said in the start of this piece, we can argue until we’re red in the face which is better and our arguments are valid against the parameters we set for ourselves. Even my thumbs up and thumbs down above can be hotly debated and I’m sure some people won’t agree with them. But our parameters may not be the same parameters another person has set for themselves so their choice of OS may not jive with ours but that’s OK.
The main takeaway here is having, at the very least, two choices is a great thing! It fosters competition and innovation from both sides. If only one operating system dominated imagine the slowdown in new features and innovation, it would get dull really quick.
As for me, what OS have I decided works best for me? Honestly. Both. I love both Android and iOS and I don’t plan on going exclusively to one or the other. As a tech writer I need to remain objective about technology, using both mobile OS’s and two desktop OS’s helps me keep my head out of the fanboy clouds and that can only make my writing better.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook and Twitter.