This lifelong rivalry between Apple and Android has started many debates, ruined many friendships, burnt houses, and even caused death. Well, maybe not death, but it’s something people strongly argue about. Which one really is number one?
When we look at the market shares for Apple and Android, we can see that Android has a huge lead in the smartphone department. This platform has a 79.3% share, while Apple is down to only 13.2% (Llamas, Reith, & Shirer, 2013). In the tablet category, however, Apple has gained control of the market with a 53.8% total tablet sale (McCracken, 2013). Even after looking at those figures, it’s still pretty inconclusive as to who reigns supreme. After all, it’s the performances of these platforms and the looks of their phones that make people buy them.
One thing a lot of people would look at is how extensive the application market for each platform is. Both Apple and Android have really huge app markets, with over a million available apps for download and around 50 to 60 billion total app downloads (Perez & Fiegerman, 2014). A noticeable difference, however, is that Apple releases big-name apps like Instagram sooner than its rival, which is a huge advantage in attracting customers. Then again, Android has so many third-party apps that Apple wouldn’t allow, giving Android users more flexibility in choosing apps (Larson, 2013). According to Nielsen (n.d.) though, having a lot of third-party app publishers can pose security threats because malicious software can be installed on your phone if you aren’t careful.
The hardware that goes with the platforms is another thing to be considered. When we look at Apple, we see that the phones and tablets all look the same save for a few color options (as seen in the iPhone 5C). The sizes are roughly the same, too. Navigating through Apple’s interface is the same on any of their devices, so it’ll be easy switching from one iPhone (or iPad) to another. On the Android side, we see a plethora of phones and tablets with sizes ranging from a watch to a notebook. And because there are different manufacturers using Android, the user interfaces of the gadgets vary. This is why it can be a bit hard to get used to another Android device because even simple tasks such as turning the Wi-Fi on differ from device to device (Larson, 2013). The very in-depth customization of Android makes up for this interface blunder though.
You’ve got the market shares covered and you’ve seen the specs of these two operating systems. As to which platform is the best platform, well, that’s all up to you. Both Apple and Android have their good and not-so-good points, but it still depends on the consumers whether or not this certain platform is better than the other. Who knows, maybe someone somewhere is pulling out his Windows phone from his pocket and telling everyone that Windows is the best mobile platform ever. As my friend once said, to each his own.
Fiegerman, S. (2013). Google Play Passes 50 Billion App Downloads. Retrieved March 8, 2014 from http://mashable.com/2013/07/18/google-play-50-billion-apps/
Larson, E. (2013). Android vs. iPhone: Which Should You Buy?. Retrieved March 6, 2014 from http://mashable.com/2013/07/24/android-vs-iphone/
Llamas, R., Reith, R., & Shirer, M. (2013). Apple Cedes Market Share in Smartphone Operating System Market as Android Surges and Windows Phone Gains, According to IDC. Retrieved March 6, 2014 from https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS24257413
Nielsen, K. (n.d.). Android vs. Apple: Which Platform is Right for You?. Retrieved March 6, 2014 from http://android-phone-review.toptenreviews.com/android-vs.-apple-which-platform-is-right-for-you-.html
Perez, S. (2013). 1 Million+ Apps Later, Apple Says Developers Have Made $13 Billion On Its Platform. Retrieved March 8, 2014 from http://techcrunch.com/2013/10/22/1-million-apps-later-apple-says-developers-have-made-13-billion-on-its-platform