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Android vs. iOS: Which smartphone platform is the best?

android vs ios v apps
Greg Mombert/Virtual Tendencies

When you’re purchasing a brand new smartphone as of late, chances are high that superb that it’ll run considered one of two running techniques: Google’s Android or Apple’s iOS. Those two platforms accounted for 99.7% of all new smartphones shipped in 2017, consistent with IDC, and that share rose even upper ultimate yr. Microsoft has thrown within the towel on its Home windows Telephone, BlackBerry makes Android gadgets now, and there are only a few different choices value taking into account.

The excellent news is that each smartphone running techniques are superb. They’ve relatively a bit of in not unusual with every different, however there are some essential variations that you simply’ll need to believe. We’re going to pit Android towards iOS in numerous classes right here and select a winner for every one. In the end, the most productive platform for you depends upon, neatly, you. Pick out the issues that topic maximum to you, depend the wins in the ones classes, and you’ve got a customized advice.


Apple has all the time been on the prime finish of the marketplace when it comes to pricing, however the iPhone X took issues to an entire new stage with a beginning worth of $1,000 and the iPhone XS Max begins at $1,100. If you want one thing extra reasonably priced, the iPhone XR begins from $750 and the older iPhone eight from $600. When you don’t need to spend that a lot, then you’ll opt for the 2-year-old iPhone 7 at $450. That’s as affordable because it will get except you delve into the secondhand marketplace.

For sheer scale and diversity, not anything competes with Android. You’ll be able to spend so much if you wish to, — as an example, Google’s Pixel three XL and Samsung’s Galaxy Observe line nearly fit Apple’s iPhone pricing, however there’s additionally an enormous number of just right, cheap handsets from all kinds of various producers, and the platform has been intentionally optimized to run on low-end . The truth that Android additionally leads the sector in unfastened apps makes it the herbal selection for the budget-conscious.

Winner: Android


Let’s get started with a take a look at the numbers. That is more or less what number of apps you’ll in finding within the Google Play Retailer and the Apple App Retailer:

  • Android apps: 2.7 million
  • iOS apps: 2.2 million

Honestly, numbers aren’t the most productive metric as a result of maximum folks handiest use a handful of apps and the most well liked ones are to be had on each platforms. Historically, iOS has been a extra profitable platform for builders, so there was a bent for brand spanking new apps to seem there first, however this is converting as Android’s marketplace percentage continues to develop. Within the U.S., iOS nonetheless leads the best way, however builders in other places are more and more concentrated on Android first.

The Play Retailer nonetheless has a better share of unfastened apps than the App Retailer. However the most productive cell video games nonetheless land on iOS first — and so they don’t all the time come to Android. In the end, high quality beats amount and so this can be a slender win for iOS.

Winner: iOS

App Retailer

android vs ios v app store

It’s tricky to prepare hundreds of thousands of apps and video games and neither Google’s Play Retailer or Apple’s App Retailer does it completely. General, we predict Apple’s App Retailer supplies a greater surfing revel in to your telephone and does a greater task with curated suggestions. The Play Retailer is more uncomplicated to go looking and you’ll queue and set up apps from the internet browser to your PC or pc.

We adore the truth that you’ll purchase apps the use of your fingerprint by way of Contact ID on iPhones, however you’ll arrange the similar factor for the Play Retailer on Android telephones with fingerprint sensors. The Play Retailer wins issues for having a no-quibble refund coverage inside two hours of acquire. There are some questionable apps in each retail outlets, however Apple is typically stricter about blockading positive sorts of apps. That may be a just right factor for general high quality, nevertheless it’s a foul factor in the event you’re into one thing like recreation emulators for traditional consoles. The App Retailer edges the win for usability and curated content material.

Winner: iOS

Selection app retail outlets and sideloading

It’s moderately simple to sideload apps on Android. Tick a field within the settings, obtain an APK, and also you’re set. There also are numerous choice Android app retail outlets past the Play Retailer, however sideloading can open you as much as the chance of malware. Apple is hostile to third-party app retail outlets. If you need a much broader number of apps and simple sideloading, then your selection is plain.

Winner: Android


android vs ios v maps
Greg Mombert/Virtual Tendencies

Because the more recent navigation machine, Apple Maps didn’t have a really perfect get started, nevertheless it has stepped forward considerably. Key options are identical, you’ll obtain maps for offline use, get correct estimates in keeping with present visitors prerequisites, and in finding turn-by-turn instructions for using or strolling. You’ll additionally in finding public transit and ride-booking integration. All of them paintings neatly and must get you the place you’re going.

Something that Google Maps provides that Apple Maps doesn’t is biking instructions. General, the dimensions and high quality of Google Maps is unsurpassed. It has extra sights and it’s typically extra detailed than Apple Maps, however the accuracy can range from position to position. Given the selection, we’d all the time select Google Maps, and despite the fact that you’ll get it on iOS, it’s higher on Android as it’s the default navigation app.

Winner: Android

Battery lifestyles and charging

As one of the vital largest bugaboos for smartphone house owners, battery lifestyles is a big issue. It’s tricky to match the 2 platforms as a result of there’s no not unusual . Let’s imagine iOS is optimized to squeeze essentially the most out of the battery consistent with mAh score, however you’ll purchase an Android instrument with a far larger battery that can simply live much longer than the iPhone.

Each Android and iOS permit you to see your battery utilization at a look, damaged down by means of app, however handiest Android displays an estimate of ways a lot battery lifestyles you have got left. They each be offering power-saving modes that may prolong your battery lifestyles by means of proscribing efficiency, connectivity, and different power-sapping options, however exactly the way it works is typically extra customizable on Android.

For a very long time, Android had a bonus within the charging division, as a result of many Android telephones presented fast-charging functions and wi-fi charging. Then again, Apple’s iPhone eight, eight Plus, and iPhone X followed wi-fi charging and instant charging, and all of the more recent iPhones fortify each. It’s value noting you must purchase the fast-charging adapter one at a time in your iPhone, while it’s in most cases equipped within the field with an Android telephone.

This class is a ways from simple, however evaluating in a similar fashion priced Android telephones with iPhones, they generally tend to have longer battery lifestyles and so they all the time have instant chargers incorporated within the field, so Android will get the win.

Winner: Android


Apple’s iOS provides constant and well timed device updates and safety patches. If you need the similar revel in on Android, then you definitely should purchase considered one of Google’s Pixel telephones. That is how iOS model stocks destroy down consistent with the authentic Apple Developer site:

  • iOS 12: 87%
  • iOS 11: nine%
  • Previous: four%

Virtually 90% of all iOS gadgets are actually operating the most recent model. In contrast, handiest round 10% of Android gadgets are operating the most recent Android nine.zero Pie. That is how Android breaks down consistent with the authentic Android Developer site:

  • Android nine.zero Pie: 10.four%
  • Android eight.1 Oreo: 15.four%
  • Android eight.zero Oreo: 12.nine%
  • Android 7.1 Nougat: 7.eight%
  • Android 7.zero Nougat: 11.four%
  • Android 6.zero Marshmallow: 16.nine%
  • Android five.1 Lollipop: 11.five%
  • Android five.zero Lollipop: three%
  • Android four.four KitKat: 6.nine%
  • Older: three.eight%

If you need the most recent options, trojan horse fixes, and safety updates, then you definitely must select iOS.

Winner: iOS


android vs ios v widgets
Greg Mombert/Virtual Tendencies

This has all the time been considered one of Android’s primary strengths. It’s really easy to customise your telephone — you’ll arrange the structure you need on your house display, upload widgets and shortcuts, or even alternate all of your consumer interface with launchers.

You’ll be able to set backgrounds in iOS and there’s restricted fortify for widgets, however you don’t have anything else like the similar stage of freedom. Android additionally means that you can arrange third-party apps as your default choices for lots of issues which are nonetheless locked down in iOS. When you experience tinkering, or you need a actually distinctive, customized search for your house display, then Android is the platform for you.

Winner: Android


The belief that Android is extra difficult than iOS prevails, however there’s no want to dive into customization choices. Each platforms be offering a just right vary of accessibility options.

When you’re on the lookout for a tool for an aged relative or a technophobe then you definitely’ll in finding some specialist choices on Android, however they generally tend to scale down what’s imaginable. Producers like Samsung additionally come with choices like “Simple mode” which make the interface larger and simplify the entire revel in, or you’ll go for a third-party app to do the similar. There are many just right apps aimed on the aged on Android and iOS.

In the end, iOS is more practical and more uncomplicated to make use of in some essential tactics. It’s uniform throughout all iOS gadgets, while Android is fairly other on gadgets from other producers. We additionally suppose iOS is much less cluttered and extra streamlined than maximum Android telephones, even supposing Google’s inventory Android is each bit as chic and obtainable.

Winner: iOS

Calls and messaging

android vs ios v imessage
Greg Mombert/Virtual Tendencies

Elementary calling and messaging capability is just right on each platforms, however it may be complicated on Android. Google looked to be folding the whole thing into Hangouts, which permits messages, SMS, video chat, crew chat, and extra by way of Wi-Fi or your knowledge community, however then it fairly confusingly launched Allo and Duo, and now it’s retiring Hangouts. There’s additionally Android Messages, which was referred to as Google Messenger, and it’s the default texting app. To make issues worse, you’ll in finding many makers like to supply their very own choices. Many Android telephones include their very own messaging and dialer apps along with Google’s messaging apps, or they get rid of the Google apps. It appears as despite the fact that Chat, in keeping with the brand new Wealthy Conversation Services and products (RCS) messaging same old, will unify issues, however it’ll be some time ahead of it’s to be had on all Android telephones.

FaceTime and iMessage come pre-installed on each iPhone and iPad, so it’s remarkably simple to connect to your family and friends. Whilst iMessage is so easy to make use of, it really works best possible when speaking with different iPhone customers. You’ll in finding third-party app integration, a laugh stickers, GIFs, and a lot more in iMessage. We give iOS the win for its consistency and straightforwardness of use.

Winner: iOS

E mail

The default e mail apps on Android and iOS are really easy to make use of and fast to arrange. You’ll be able to pull in a couple of e mail accounts and consider them in one inbox in the event you need. Android and iOS have an enormous vary of third-party e mail apps to be had as neatly. Then again, Gmail is a more potent default e mail app than iOS’ Mail. Since Gmail is the most well liked e mail deal with machine on the planet, it is sensible that the Gmail app can be a winner. You’ll be able to additionally upload e mail addresses from other suppliers in Gmail very easily.

The one factor is that Android telephones steadily be offering choice e mail apps made by means of the producers, which might or might not be just right.

Winner: Android

Digital camera

android vs ios v cameras
Greg Mombert/Virtual Tendencies

It is a tricky class to name. Up to now, we’ve argued that Apple does the most productive task shooting lights, coloring, and different main points, however the most recent Android smartphones are casting numerous doubt on that statement. Google’s Pixel three and Pixel three XL boast the most productive cameras we’ve used thus far, however the iPhone XS and XS Max come shut.

Whilst lots of the present crop of Android flagships recreation just right, or every so often nice, cameras, there’s a good bit of variance and the digicam high quality of many midrange gadgets doesn’t come just about the standard of iPhone cameras. As you’d be expecting, maximum price range Android telephones have lower-quality cameras.

The digicam apps on each platforms are superb and really instant. For ease of use and best possible effects with out tweaking, the iOS digicam app takes the cake. There’s extra variation on Android just because producers have a tendency so as to add their very own digicam apps with a lot of options, some just right, some a bit of gimmicky. We’re going to present this one to iOS, however with the caveat that the highest Android telephones, specifically the Pixel three, be offering the most productive smartphone digicam revel in round.

Winner: iOS

Picture backup

When you use the Pictures app in Android, then you’ll routinely again up all of your footage and movies. There’s undoubtedly that Google Pictures is the most suitable choice as it provides limitless unfastened garage, equipped you don’t thoughts the 16-megapixel prohibit for photographs and the 1080p solution prohibit for video.

You’ll be able to again up footage and movies on the unique solution with iCloud or Google Pictures, however you handiest get 5GB of unfastened area with iCloud, in comparison to 15GB with Google. You’ll be able to additionally again up limitless footage and movies in complete solution with Google Pictures in the event you personal a Google-branded Pixel telephone.

This class is difficult by means of the truth that the default on iOS is iCloud, however you’ll additionally use Google’s Pictures on iOS. Then again, since most of the people move with the default choice, we’re giving Android the win right here.

Winner: Android

Cloud services and products

Apple remains to be lagging in relation to cloud garage and automated backups. Google provides 15GB at no cost and has cross-platform fortify. You handiest get 5GB with iCloud, and it handiest works with Home windows, Mac, and iOS.

If you want numerous further area, Google Force was the most affordable at $2 per 30 days for 100GB ($24 for the yr), however Apple dropped its costs to compare. Apple fees $1 per 30 days for 50GB or $four per 30 days for 200GB. Apple’s worth for 1TB jumps as much as $10 per 30 days, while Google offers you 2TB for that worth.

Android’s cloud garage is more uncomplicated to make use of and simpler than iCloud. You’ll be able to additionally use Google Force on an iPhone, while iCloud is iOS handiest.

Winner: Android

Voice assistants

android vs ios v voice assistant
Chris DeGraw/Virtual Tendencies

You’ll be able to do lots of the similar issues with Apple’s Siri as you’ll with Google Assistant, however Siri is extra like a simple helper for atmosphere calendar appointments, looking the internet, or making calls. Google Assistant has an additional layer. It could preemptively be offering helpful tips, and it has a extra conversational aspect that gives up entertaining video games and contextual data in keeping with what you’re doing. It’s smarter and extra flexible than Siri.

The addition of Siri Shortcuts in iOS 12, which lets you arrange voice instructions to cause teams of automatic duties, is a large step in the precise path and Siri could also be starting to make extra tips in keeping with your iPhone utilization. For now, alternatively, Google Assistant can do extra and appears to be bettering at a far quicker fee.

Winner: Android


A lot has been product of the supposedly “poisonous hell stew” this is Android, however the specter of malware is exaggerated. Actually that most of the people won’t ever come across an issue as a result of they don’t move outdoor the Play Retailer for apps. Explicit producers like Samsung have taken additional efforts to improve safety for the undertaking marketplace. However the slovenly nature of updates on many Android gadgets can significantly extend essential safety patches.

Rapid updates are actually extra essential than ever as a result of safety breaches are changing into extra critical. Android is in the back of within the replace international, except you have got a inventory Android instrument, and so it’s much less safe. As a result of hundreds of thousands of Android telephones are nonetheless operating device that’s years previous, they are able to be liable to critical hacks like Heartbleed and Stagefright.

Apple is already firmly entrenched in company The us and has additionally labored on stepped forward safety for normal customers, maximum particularly with Contact ID and FaceID within the iPhone X and later. The tight oversight that Apple has on apps and the facility to push updates out to extra gadgets, extra briefly, offers it a definitive edge over Android. The corporate additionally encrypts knowledge in iMessage and its different apps.

Apple prioritizes consumer privateness, so you’ll really feel secure understanding your individual knowledge isn’t saved or learn by means of Apple. It’s all encrypted, too. In the meantime, Android encrypts some knowledge, however your privateness is much less safe. Google mines your knowledge for info that it will possibly use to promote higher advertisements and marketplace merchandise to you. Your knowledge could also be saved and browse to give you a greater A.I. revel in.

Google claims it’s dedicated to completely give protection to consumer privateness and nonetheless give you the A.I. services and products it provides, however some safety mavens and Apple argue that Google items a false selection between A.I. and privateness. Apple even went to struggle with the FBI to ensure your proper to encryption. It’s arduous to overcome that roughly determination.

There’s no denying that iOS is essentially the most safe platform and the person who best possible protects consumer privateness. When you care about your privateness and safety, move with an iPhone.

Winner: iOS

Rooting, bootloaders, and jailbreaking

We’ve checked out the best way to root your Android telephone or pill ahead of. It’s now not for everybody, but when you need root get admission to and whole keep an eye on over your instrument, then rooting is learn how to get it. Rooting provides you with get admission to to extra apps, the most recent OS updates with out ready, new device skins to get the cultured you need, the danger to do away with bloatware from carriers and producers, possible tweaks to spice up your instrument’s velocity and battery lifestyles, and extra.

Many Android OEMs (unique apparatus producers) additionally be offering a option to free up the bootloader, which determines how the running machine lots up to your instrument. Apple is totally hostile to this sort of factor. Jailbreaking is an choice for iOS, which helps you to obtain and set up apps from outdoor the App Retailer and bypass another obstacles.

Winner: Android

Instances and equipment

The typical iPad or iPhone proprietor spends extra money on extra issues than the common Android instrument proprietor, and Apple has constructed up a really perfect ecosystem of peripherals for its telephones and capsules. There are way more peripherals and instances aimed on the iPhone than every other instrument, however one thing like Samsung’s Galaxy S10 can be a detailed 2d.

Then again, Android gadgets have followed the Micro USB or USB-C same old, while Apple insists on its proprietary Lightning cable, this means that it’s a lot more uncomplicated to discover a charger in the event you’re now not an iPhone proprietor. This steadily method you must splash out on an overpriced Apple adapter. Peripheral producers might nonetheless move after iOS as their primary goal, nevertheless it’s very uncommon to seek out one thing with out Micro USB or USB-C fortify.

Any other mark towards Apple right here pertains to its abandonment of the usual three.5mm audio port, which began with the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus. You probably did get an adapter within the field with a brand new iPhone for some time, however Apple now not comprises it, so that you’ll have to shop for the dongle and, even supposing you do, it’s simply misplaced. The number of headphones carrying three.5mm audio jacks a ways exceeds the ones with Lightning connectors. After all, now some Android telephones are axing the headphone jack in want of USB-C audio, so this might not be the sort of giant distinction for for much longer.

It’s additionally essential to notice that Apple’s ecosystem of goods all paintings in combination exceedingly neatly. The iPad, Apple Watch, MacBook, and HomeKit merchandise all paintings in combination in very best solidarity. MacOS, WatchOS, and iOS are all neatly hooked up, making it simple to have all Apple merchandise at the similar web page.

Since Android telephones are produced by means of many alternative producers, product ecosystems range. Samsung has a really perfect ecosystem, as an example, and Android telephones have fortify from House, Chromecast, and Android Put on. Then again, it’s now not relatively as seamless.

General, taking all to be had equipment into consideration, you have got extra selection with an iPhone, so iOS takes the win right here, however with caveats.

Winner: iOS


Numerically talking, Android wins 10 classes and iOS wins eight classes, however iOS wins in one of the extra essential classes — we don’t suppose rooting or choice app retail outlets are as essential for most of the people as accessibility or safety, as an example. It’s very tricky to match the 2. As a result of Apple controls the and the device, you’ll in finding that iOS provides a extra uniform revel in throughout gadgets.

A instantly comparability of the most recent variations of Android and iOS wouldn’t be very consultant of most of the people’s revel in, as a result of maximum Android gadgets aren’t operating the most recent model. The revel in you get is additional difficult by means of the truth that maximum Android smartphone producers upload their very own consumer interface on most sensible of Google’s inventory Android. Because of this, there’s relatively a large distinction between the use of Google’s Pixel three, the Samsung Galaxy S10, and the Huawei P30 Professional, as an example.

When you do come to a decision to head with an Android instrument, be certain you perform a little analysis and take a look at the model of Android it runs, the producer pores and skin on most sensible, and the producer’s document for device updates.

In the end, other classes shall be essential to other other people, so that you must be aware of those that depend for you and make your resolution in keeping with that. If safety and privateness are a very powerful issue, then the iPhone is the most obvious selection. If battery lifestyles tops your checklist and you need so that you can customise your telephone, then select Android. Each Android and iOS are mature, feature-packed platforms with way more similarities than variations, and we will be able to heartily counsel both.

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