iPhones and Android devices have very different approaches to competing in the market, with different features and experiences taking precedence with each brand.
While both offer great options in their own right, there are some categories where one type of phone clearly stands above the other. Navi digs into the categories below.
About iPhones and Android Phones
Modern smartphones are dominated by two primary operating systems: iOS and Android. iOS is only installed on iPhones, while the Android O.S. can be found on a wide variety of different types of phones and devices.
Both of which see constant updates year after year to keep up with one another at a technological level both in terms of hardware and software.
iPhone vs. Android: Popularity
Android phones dominate the market, taking up 87% of smartphone sales in 2019. The reason for this is that Android doesn’t limit itself to one brand; almost every smartphone that isn’t released by Apple will run an Android operating system.
This means that Google, Samsung, Motorola, and many more of the top smartphone manufacturers all utilize Android. At the same time, iOS is exclusively used by the limited range of iPhones that are out at any given time.
However, despite having a much smaller pool of hardware to work with, iPhones are still by far the most popular smartphones on the market. In 2021, the top five best-selling smartphones were all Apple iPhones, with even older generations of iPhones beating out state-of-the-art devices from Samsung and Google.
Android’s success is spread across a wide array of phones, while Apple competes by having a few immensely popular devices.
iPhone vs. Android: Modification
This is one of the biggest differences between Android and iPhone. Android as an operating system is open-source, meaning many different companies are allowed to work on it and make changes if they prefer.
Android manufacturers have the freedom to make changes to things like layout and preloaded app capability. Anybody in the world could develop a device using Android software if they want to.
Apple prefers to be uniform in its designs, offering little to no room for customers to customize or change the devices in any way. iOS is meant for internal use only within Apple, and it is only allowed to function however Apple wants it to. There are no other companies developing iOS devices or making changes to iOS in any way.
iPhone vs. Android: App Availability
Apple is stingy with what it will allow on its devices, and not all apps are available with them. The Google play store has over 2.5 million apps for use by customers with Android phones.
Meanwhile, the Apple App Store only has 1.8 million apps. It is a lot harder to have an app developed and approved for compatibility with the App Store, going back to the closed source nature of iOS.
A plus for Apple, however, is that it caters heavily to groups who all use iPhones. Apps like iMessage and FaceTime are exclusively available for use between iPhone users, offering better-messaging services to people who use them.
Apple stays competitive by developing these iPhone exclusive apps that even notify others when they are messaging someone who doesn’t use iOS. Even still, Apple has a drastically reduced number of apps, and many of them can only be downloaded on an iPhone if it is jailbroken.
iPhone vs. Android: Repair and Reliability
It is generally easier to get consistent support from Apple compared with Android.
One of the benefits of having such a limited range of hardware options is that switching from one device to another is a fairly simple process within the Apple ecosystem. iPhones (and iPads) evolve in a linear direction, unlike Android phones, which branch off and take the software to different places.
Another big reason for this is that Apple devices get consistent updates longer than Android phones do on average, meaning for many people, they last longer.
Apple also has a lot of physical locations where you can go to get your phone looked at in person. Apple stores are abundant in the United States, and they are an easy central location where all Apple questions can be asked.
Android is spread across a ton of companies, and many people will have to go through their internet provider if they have issues with their phone that need solving.
iPhone vs. Android: Price
Cost is a mixed bag when it comes to smartphones in general. iPhones tend to be on the middle to the upper end of the pricing spectrum as far as mobile devices go. The new iPhone 13 has a retail price of $799, with the iPhone 13 Pro Max going as high as $1099. However, Apple does also sell the iPhone SE, which acts as a budget model for $429 for the base model.
Android has a much wider range of prices. You could get a cheap Android phone for just a couple hundred dollars if you go looking for one. On the other hand, you could get something like the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3, which can cost up to $1799. Android definitely gives you more options, while Apple prefers to stay squarely in the middle of the pack.
Deciding whether an iPhone or Android is the better choice may not be a simple answer. Ultimately, it comes down to your personal needs as a consumer of these devices.
Apple comes out on top when you look at the reliability and consistent customer service. The simplicity of its range of hardware options makes it relatively easy to get support when needed. iPhones are the most popular phones in the U.S., and Apple takes full advantage of that by making plenty of iPhone-specific apps and features.
On the other hand, Android is an open-source platform and offers a ton of variety to customers. People could get all sorts of different kinds of phones for a wide range of prices, especially compared with iPhones. There are way more apps available on Android, and there is more freedom to modify the O.S.
Both brands will certainly continue to grow and find new ways to compete over the next few years in an attempt to become the clear-cut winner of the smartphone market.
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Android vs iOS market share 2023 | Statista
Apple Captures 7 Spots in 2021 List for Global Top 10 Smartphones | CapturePoint
Frequently Asked Questions | Android Open Source Project
Biggest app stores in the world 2021 | Statista
iOS vs Android | New York Times