September 23, 2013 Last updated September 18th, 2018 1,277 Reads share

Tiff Between Android And iOS Adoption Rate: Who Wins The Battle?

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Google Android and Apple iOS emerged as the two most popular operating system platforms for mobile devices, both smartphone and tablets. Though popular, both the operating system and their respective communities are eager to know whether the pointer of the balance scale is tilted towards them or not. The recent trend shows the adoption rate of new versions of iOS mobile operating system is satisfactory and Apple is proud of that.

Three years after its launch Gingerbread of Android is still now the most used version. Jellybean, launched a year ago is in second place and the third position being occupied by the Ice Cream Sandwich which was launched in 2011. Unlike its Android counterparts, when Apple comes up with a new version of iOS, it is readily available to all the supported devices. Android versions go through multiple levels of testing and approval with various device manufacturers, before the Android passionate get access to the recent launch. The Android Jellybean took almost 8 months before the technology is available for different devices.

Even though it’s almost been a year after the latest android technology is available for the people; most of the supportive devices still stick to older and outdated OS versions. It cannot be concluded from these only that iOS wins the tussle. There are many features that are compatible with the latest generation of iPhone, iPods or iPads and do not work with previous generation. Though it cannot be termed as a drawback, but it can be counted as negative point in the bag of iOS. Most of the iOS devices support the latest versions, applications and features vary widely across devices. For example- the Passbook feature works with iPhone or iPod, but not work on the iPad. The camera application works with newer iPod Touches, iPhones, but not on the iPad.

Development story

It is true that Apple have to cross fewer hurdles when it is about launching the latest version of iOS for the masses. When a new iOS is out in the market, the users can immediately download and install it. But, the features available on the iOS depend on the hardware of the devices it will run.

The app developers try to build applications that function perfectly on every version of the Android phone. The reason for that is majority of the Android users stick to older versions and the developers are bound to consider the hardware of older versions that make their job even more difficult. The developers while creating applications for the iOS do not actually bother whether the application works with multiple versions of iOS. Study shows that only 21% of the users browse web with an iOS version older than 6.0. It is true there will be certain limitations of the iOS depending on the actual devices it will be used on. Four different display sizes are there when iPad mini, iPad, iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 are considered. The adoption rate of Apple is still high than its Android counterparts.

What is the reason behind such a success?

98% of the market has the iOS version that is not older than a year. IB Time’s Dave Smith commented last week that the adoption rate of latest iOS 7 was even faster than its predecessors and still the software is in beta release stage. The adoption rate of Apple has always remained pretty fast, but this time the commentators are of the opinion that it is going to break all the records. The secret behind the Apple’s success of pushing new versions of software to the users is it has complete control over the development of both hardware and software. From the inception, only a single iPhone is released annually and two different iPad models are now being released each year.

In contrast, Google ties up with different manufacturers to develop their Android devices. Each of them comes up with versions of smartphones and tablets often layering their own software over the Android software.

In order to be back in the race, Google have purchased Motorola Mobility in 2012. They have the intention to control the manufacturing process and develop their own tablet and smartphone hardware. Let’s see whether their initiatives will bring out fruitful results and they will be able to beat the giant Apple in terms of adoption rate.

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Sandip Kar

Sandip Kar

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