The iOS vs Android Debate

The iOS vs Android Debate

The iOS vs Android debate has recently been heating up.

Followers on both sides are long standing and often argue over features of the operating system.

While both operating systems share many common similarities there are some distinct differences.

First, let’s take a look at what they both have to offer.

How are iOS and Android Similar?

iOS was released in 2007 by Apple and Android in 2008 by Google with both having had a big share of the mobility market.

Devices using iOS include the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and the Apple TV. Android devices include smartphones, tablets, televisions, cars and watches.

Both operating systems share the following features:

  • A touch interface that can swipe, zoom and tap.
  • A status bar that displays Wifi and mobile signal, battery level, and time.
  • Over 1 million apps for each OS available through their corresponding app stores.
  • iOS and Android operating systems also utilize a homescreen that allows customisation of app icons.
The iOS Vs. Android Debate

Source: PC Advisor

Three Advantages of iOS

The three main advantages of iOS relate to privacy, updates and Touch ID.


Control over what information apps have access to on the phone. Android has no option to restrict or customise app access.



Updates are available on the device directly from Apple and are not dependent on the carrier.


Touch ID

Allows for easier unlocking of the device. Mobile payments on the device are also processed faster without logins.


Three Advantages of Android

The three main advantages of Android relate to personalisation, range of manufacturers and third party support.


Auto-updating widgets can be installed. These show information such as weather, stocks and app status.



A large number of manufacturers release devices with Android installed. Often manufacturers will install custom apps.


Third Party Apps

Android devices are able to install third party apps from sources other than the Google Play store.


Staying Secure with iOS and Android

Security is an important aspect when choosing an operating system. Whilst features of Android lend it to be a favourite for developers and those who value personalisation, security on iOS is a whole lot stricter.

iOS apps can only be installed from the App store which due to Apple’s strict process of publishing eliminates a large number of malicious apps.

Android on the other hand allow apps to be downloaded from other sources. Even though Google say they inspect every app that is published to the Google Play store they cannot be responsible for apps that users find through other sources.


Why iOS May Have the Edge

Here are some features which may give iOS the edge.

  • There is still a trend for new apps to arrive on iOS first, take Periscope as an example which at this article’s time of publication is only available on iOS.
  • Even though iOS and Android have native apps, Apple’s do not work on Android, while Google apps do work on iOS.
  • Moving from Android to iOS is easier than iOS to Android.
  • iOS allows individual app notification control.


iOS or Android?

Almost every feature that is an advantage on one OS has something similar on the other. While Apple iOS has the edge in newly released apps, app privacy and updates direct from Apple, Android has a larger number of manufacturers, better personalisation and the ability to install third party apps.

Even though each has its pros and cons the overall user experience seems to be one of the deciding factors. Once a user is accustomed with either of the two operating systems it can be difficult to change.

Which operating system do you prefer? Need help changing from one operating system to the other? Take a look at our how to guides on How To: Switch from an Android to an iPhone, and How To: Switch from an iPhone to an Android.