Many operating systems power different mobile systems out there, but two giants stand out for popularity, known as Android and iOS. For those who think to add Microsoft or Blackberry platforms, well, we will say a big no! as they out of the trend.
How do you choose between Android or iOS?
- Ask yourselves these questions, and they will bring out the answer you’ve been looking for
- What country is your business targeting, or where are your visitors? · What are the demographics of your target audience?
- Do you want to seek the mobile user base’s attention that is most likely to spend money on an app or the largest mobile users population?
- Is your app going to be a paid app, or do you plan to monetize it later?
- How fast do you want to develop the app? What is the expected time to market the mobile app? The key aspects regarding the IDE (integrated development environments) for the two (Android and iOS) platforms impact your app development timeline!
- What are the main differences while developing Android and iOS apps?
- Android has more versions than iOS; what’s the impact on your business due to this discrepancy?
- How vital are the publishing policies between the two platforms to your business- do you anticipate regular updates or not?
- Does your business model is ready for unsteady app releases across devices?
- Do you need to create a mobile app for both Android and iOS at the same time?
- Let’s get to the questions and find answers in detail, shall we?
What country is your business targeting, or where are your visitors coming from?
The analytics tool can help you know about your app reach. You should be at least-having google analytics linked to your website, which shows visitors’ details, paid customers, and their whereabouts.
There is no other way to determine this other than checking your current visitors unless you launched your company or website last night.
You should be able to use your web analytics tool to see a breakdown of your website traffic and determine how platform users access your website.
Ultimately, you’re trying to reach your current or potential customers’ highest segment through your app’s implementation.
But there is a different and more comfortable way to think about the same. You can multiply the number of iOS and Android users as per their spending on your mobile app. This is how you can estimate the potential revenue of your app from these two specific user bases. That will provide you the confidence of what platform to choose.
What are the demographics of your target audience?
As per IDC data, 87% of smartphones market share shipped worldwide by 2019 is entirely dominated by the Android Market.
See the figure above to know the statistics of smartphone shipments. (Source: Statista)
There is hardly any argument anymore on who makes more money and spends more money on apps and in-app purchases.
In the competition from the get-go, Apple won the war.
Average iOS users make up to $85,000 per year in the US, while the average android user makes 40% less or $60,000 per year.
A different view shows that 41% of iOS users make more than $100,000 in the US v/s 24% of Android users falling into this bracket.
And if we go a bit higher on the income scale, 60% of users making $150,000+ own iPhones rather than Android devices.
Apple users make in-app purchases more than android users.
Do you want to reach out to the mobile user base that is most likely to spend money on an app, or instead you want to focus on the largest population of mobile users?
The above question indeed answered your doubt of which users would make more in-app purchases. Though more money is spent on in-app purchases on iOS, Google Play expands the monthly app downloads gap. Undoubtedly, the expansion will be big as Android has already owned a sweeping 80% of the global smartphone market shares.
We know I’ve got you back to square one but stay with me.
But in countries like the US, Apple still accounts for 42% of the smartphone market share; at a global level, the distinction is even starker, with Android controlling upwards of 80 to 99% of foreign markets.
In part, that is attributed to the emergence of $100 smartphones operating on Android than the $700+ price tag of an iPhone
In a nutshell, if you are targeting the US, you know what platform to choose, but if you are looking for a global sale, Android is the platform you should be investing in.
Is your app going to be a paid app, or do you plan to monetize it later?
iOS revenue numbers might be impressive because of its in-app purchases, but there are clear reasons why Android became the biggest platform in the world, and Google plays with the highest number of app downloads.
The growth is on the mutual side, both from the developer and at the customer’s end; we’ll get to this later. Android customers can get a cheaper smartphone and low to no cost apps in the play store, which is a win-win for the customer, which is the main reason for Google’s numbers. This also means the developers can reach out to a broader market range on Google Play by listing their app for free.
Apple’s business strategy was a bit different, though, when a customer purchases an app for a small amount in which 30% goes to apple and the rest to the developer, which means the revenue per download is higher. But there is a backdrop to this; most customers would not be willing to purchase despite having good reviews unless the app is desperately required they will not purchase.
And it’s not the same with Android; a user can download, test the app and purchase premium features if he/she likes the app.
If you’ve ever played an addictive game on your phone like Clash of clans, where you need to pay for the upgrade, most of them buy these “coins” or “Cash” because it helps your game.
It again comes down to the same thing, if you’re targeting America, you should go for iOS, and if you want your app to be globally acclaimed, Android is the platform you need to invest in.
How fast do you want to develop the app? What is the expected time to market the mobile app? The key aspects regarding the IDE (integrated development environments) for the two (Android and iOS) platforms impact your app development timeline!
It’s a known fact that Android code is more than that of iOS, which makes Android take a longer time to develop than an iOS app.
But hey! You have to make up your mind if you want your app to reach out to many people or an app sold only for the US market.
Ok! To remind you guys, it is not just the US using iPhones or iPads; I’m mentioning it because the market is more significant in that particular region.
What are the main differences between the Android and iOS app development process?
Let’s get to know about the codes and platforms first. An iOS developer uses XCode as the IDE platform and Swift as the coding language to develop your app, an Android developer user’s Android Studio.
Although Android claims to be open-source, adaptable, and flexible, it does not help developers accomplish challenging tasks. All the developers feel the same (except for the ones at Google maybe) that iOS is a much better platform to work on simply because you have less coding to deal with.
As far as the business requirements are concerned, Unless Android Studio reaches the same maturity level as XCode. It may be more advantageous to go with iOS, but if you could spend those extra time for an Android app to be developed, your app could reach more people.
Android has more versions than iOS; what’s the impact on your business due to this discrepancy?
Talking about the iOS platform, most users are updated on the latest versions; iOS 11 is their latest software update. Users with iPhone 5s and above can have this software update, making 90% of their users updated with the latest software.
So if you are planning on building an app on iOS, the decision becomes accessible to makes. You could either develop your app on the newest version or build it and test it for the top two versions and reach most of your users.
If you run a company, you must maintain either a website or a mobile app that works flawlessly for all your target customers. In this case, you can go with iOS as it does not fail to meet business expectations.
Android has a whole different story. There are tons of versions used by thousands of brands, and only a few come with the latest version, and most of the devices cannot support Android’s latest version.
One of the top Android phone manufacturers (not taking the name) comes with a flagship phone every six months. As the latest phone is released, they forget to update the phone, which was released earlier, which leaves the customers struck with the later version, which happens with most manufacturers.
So if you are developing an Android app, you need to make sure it’s compatible with all the versions. To get this done, it should have increased in-app testing, and version-specific bug fixes will have to be implemented, which is why Android takes a lot longer than iOS to be developed.
How vital are the publishing policies between the two platforms to your business- do you anticipate regular updates or not?
Publishing an app is an effortless affair, and you can deploy your app to your Google Play store, and it becomes available for downloads in no time.
And the other best part is Google Play allows you to update your app multiple times a day should there be critical issues you need to be fixed.
And one more important thing is that Google Play allows you to publish an Alpha and beta version to Google Play – that way, you can publish your app on Google Play and do live testing on it, fix issues, and then launch it for download!
On the other side, publishing an app on iOS is a pain and a dread for developers. It needs various approval levels from the iOS team with bureaucratic reviews, with the app deployment taking up to one week.
Does your business model is ready for unsteady app releases across devices?
Droid’s options for staggered releases wins the battle by providing companies with the flexibility to roll out and their apps and new features to a subset of users before rolling out the release to all its customers.
Google Play can allow for a staggered release, an option loved by everyone.
A staggered release allows you to gradually deploy the app to various percentages of users, observe their interactions, and then increase users’ percentage who can access it over time.
So, when a new version of the app is released to only 5% of the users, it gradually increases until it reaches 100 users.
A business usually uses this strategy with high amounts of traffic daily, where a bug’s impact on the app could have a disastrous impact on its app revenue.
Google Play offers options for staggered releases, and iOS does not, which makes Android a go-to option.
Do you need to create a mobile app for both Android and iOS at the same time?
Building an app on both platforms is not recommended, especially if you’re launching an app for the first time. Not a wise thing to do!
Many companies understand the need to build a mobile application as soon as possible to be relevant in today’s digital marketplace. But the last thing you would want to do is building an app on both platforms.
The fact can’t be denied that a brand can reach 95% of smartphone users by developing the app on both platforms. But building your app fast and then fixing it is not a great strategy to apply. In the case of mobile app development because the cost of building the app on both platforms at the same time would eventually impact your ROI.
Maturity being able to identify your target audience and then coming up to a conclusion whether if you need your app on both the platforms or just one, and if it’s just one, then which one is it?
iOS is indeed a better software of the two, but Android is the go-to platform if you look from a business perspective.
Here are 8 Reasons to develop Android Apps over iOS Google Play Store
Google play store is the first thing that comes to mind when choosing between iOS and Android.
The Google Play Store and the Developer console are just amazing.
We love the fact that you or anyone can release a new application to millions of Android users all over the world within a few hours of building your app.
The automated review process is the best option as it reduces the overall cost and time in the app development cycle.
Bug fixes and updates can also be taken care of with extreme ease.
The Google Play Store also has a lot of great features:
- Store listing experiments – Alpha or Beta testing for your Play Store Listing page.
- Alpha and Beta testing
- An API! Which will automate your Play Store uploads
- A native app that manages all your apps on the go
Google play store provides a great way to distribute your app; you need some lessons on this.
Android’s intent system is fantastic. It’s a core feature of the OS that was designed exceptionally well.
Intents allow an app to broadcast its intent to act and any app to respond.
These provide numerous possibilities for integration between systems or apps. Intents are known as building blocks, allowing system apps to be replaced with 3rd party apps.
Android is well known for its ability to customized, and we have intentions to thank you for that!
Android’s popularity is one thing you should probably get convinced.
For the 100th time in this blog, Android is the most popular platform globally, and its users are all over the globe.
Compared to Android users, iOS users come close to Android numbers in just one region, and in the rest of the world, Android is the King.
So if you are planning on making your app for people worldwide and in different languages, yes, Android is available in more languages than iOS, which adds an added advantage over iOS.
Launching your first app on Android is undoubtedly a significant step or investment.
Droid’s resource system is just excellent, and there have been just a few changes over the years, which shows the incredible design and forethought that went into the initial Android design.
Resources are the primary way of defining themes, styles, strings, drawables, layout, and more in your application.
The best part of this system is that it supports configuration qualifiers – Providing a different set of resources for a different configuration.
A configuration can be anything from the device language, orientation, screen size, API level, and more.
· Localization is incredibly easy
· Providing different layouts for large screen sizes is a cinch
· Defining multiple themes that can change your application’s entire look, which is built right in.
If you haven’t been using the resource system to its full potential, you should start doing it.
Android Devices are better
This could be a bit controversial but let’s be honest, Android has been the platform where the technology was and is always experimented with, and something new has been introduced.
Forget about the small devices, the flagships have always been coming up with some crazy stuff and apps taking advantage of them, and iPhone takes ages to use the same technology.
From having some of the best cameras to introducing things like face recognition to Augmented Reality and whatnot, everything came with Android.
If you have something new to give to the world, Android is the place you need to start.
Easy to get listed
Since Android is an open-source platform, anything and everything is encouraged.
You can create an app and make it go live with-in a day, and don’t even ask me about the procedure to list your app in iOS; we can put it as ” A developer’s nightmare.”
The time taken to create the app may be longer than creating an iOS app, but you know your app will be listed in the play store at the end of the day.
But make sure your app is smooth and responsive because it’s not healthy to have bad ratings and reviews.
App optimization could make your app rank high and help you with more downloads and, eventually, a profitable business.
You could add keywords from the app’s name to the developer’s name and, obviously, the description.
The keyword game helps to boost your app’s ranking, hence doing great business.
Whereas iOS apps do not have friendlier rules when you want to play with the keywords.
Android is just Amazing!
To top all these points, Android has a 70% market share worldwide, and it is available in thousands of different devices of all ranges and sizes, from the path-breaking flagship models to the virtual devices, which still serve the purpose.
The potential of Android app development is immense, which has a massive community of developers regularly contributing to this platform; it isn’t hard to find a developer when you desperately need one.
Android is the best place to start with if you ask me! Or anyone from the mobile app development community.
It might take a little bit longer than iOS for the development, but you are 100% sure to be listed without any pain on the Google Play Store, and that too in a blink! (Compared to iOS)
However, the key is to find the right mobile app development company that could develop the app, which ticks all the boxes and gives your business the growth it needs.
Mohit Maheshwari is Chief Strategist at NMG Technologies, a full service IT company offering android and iOS mobile app design and development services. He has been in the industry since 2000 and focuses on long-term strategies, intuitive user experience, and successful customer acquisition. Follow Mohit on Twitter and LinkedIn