Mobile application is one of the most popular software types. The importance of the mobile app market cannot be overstated. It’s already massive, but it’s still expanding and brimming with promise. It’s no surprise that businesses all across the world want a piece of that cake.
However, developing a great mobile app involves new ideas, bold moves, and proper planning.
Choosing between iOS mobile app development or Android mobile app development is one of the first decisions you’ll have to make when creating an app.
While releasing on both platforms may be your main goal, developing a mobile app for both iOS and Android at the same time is riskier and more expensive.
However, most product owners prefer to build an app for one platform first, then publish it on another when the first version has shown effective.
Check how you can test your idea with a product prototype.
We’ll analyze and contrast the two platforms so you can choose which is best for your company. Let’s take a closer look.
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App development for Android and iOS
Google’s Android is an open-source operating system. Its diverse versions are found in tens of thousands of devices, ranging from smartphones to smart home devices. It can be used for free thanks to its open-source nature. Android is used by companies including Samsung, Xiaomi, Sony, and Huawei for their smart products.
Before, Android apps had to be written in Java, but that has changed since Google stated in 2019 that Kotlin, a modern programming language that completely integrates with Java, is now the preferred language for Android app development.
Apple’s mobile devices run on the iOS operating system, which is exclusive to Apple products. This system is substantially more closed-off than Android, with a uniform user interface that limits modification choices. Following Apple’s design guidelines, on the other hand, ensures that your visuals are attractive to the eye. Swift is the programming language used to create all modern iOS apps.
Swift was released in 2014 and displaced Apple’s previous programming language of choice, Objective-C, at least for mobile reasons. Swift provides all of the modern features that developers care about, as well as the ability to work with Objective-C code written by Apple since the company’s inception in the early 1980s.
Given their apparent similarities, both operating systems are diverse and need unique skill sets as well as development methodologies. They also attract different users, because more expensive Apple devices are (unsurprisingly) more popular among affluent groups, who also use their phones more.
Is Android better than iOS?
In some cases, Android app development is definitely preferable to iOS app development:
1. Customization and flexibility
The Android system provides significantly greater freedom and customization options because of its open-source nature and flexible guidelines regarding how apps should feel. Experienced software developers might fully unleash their creativity in this type of environment.
2. Global audience
Android is the operating system of choice for the majority of mobile users around the globe, with over 3 billion active devices. With thousands of different device types, almost anyone can discover an Android device that suits their needs. Google’s operating system is incredibly popular in developing countries like Africa (where Android has an 82% market share), Asia (where it has an 83% market share), and South America (with 89%). It’s also still the most popular mobile OS in the majority of Europe.
3. More Android mobile app development pros:
- Open-source, anyone can access every element of its code, allowing for the use and modification of every single feature.
- It’s extremely easy to publish an app on Google Play Store, Android’s largest app store.
- Google provides design standards to assist software developers to create beautiful Android interfaces, but they can choose whether or not to implement them.
Android development cons
- It might be expensive to test and adapt your Android app to a variety of devices. Your app’s performance may differ in unexpected ways between seemingly similar device models.
- App usage is lower among Android users. According to Sensor Tower, Apple’s App Store earned $41.5 billion in customer spending in the first half of 2021, compared to $23.4 billion for Google Play in the same time.
Is iOS better than Android?
1. Development costs
When it comes to keeping your mobile app development on track and on budget, iOS outperforms Android. As of late 2021, Android is running on over 24k different device models, including smartphones, tablets, TVs, and microwaves. Although software developers can prevent your program from being installed on devices that don’t satisfy certain hardware requirements, testing your app on every device it will be installed on can be tough. When developing an iOS app, you simply need to make it compatible with a few modern iPhones and iPads.
2. Possibilities for monetization
The majority of Android users expect apps to be free, whereas iOS users are more likely to pay for apps and make in-app purchases. Android developers who are aware of these tendencies are more likely to monetize their apps by including advertisements. Although adding advertising to an Android app may appear to be the only dependable option to make money, the disadvantages of doing so are clear: they slow down the app’s speed and degrade the user experience. Meanwhile, on iOS, where users are more accustomed to paid mobile apps, your app’s sharp design and smooth UI can be unchanged, and even serve as additional incentives for purchasing.
3. Workflow optimization
Although some developers see Apple’s rigorous standards as a hindrance, others see them as a blessing. They laud Apple’s approach for its clarity and precision, claiming that it greatly simplifies their work. They don’t just save time, though. When a developer doesn’t have to worry about every last detail, they can concentrate on making your app’s distinctive and intriguing features shine out.
4. More iOS mobile app development pros:
- Apple provides detailed and specific user interface requirements to ensure that all iOS apps are modern and clean.
- iOS is widely perceived as being more secure than its competitors because of its closed-source nature.
- The iOS App Store has high app publishing criteria, which means it’s more difficult to have an app published there, but if you do, it’s instantly deemed worthy of purchase by many customers.
- In wealthy countries, where consumers can afford to spend more money on virtual goods, iOS devices are significantly more prevalent (such as mobile apps and in-app purchases).
iOS development cons
iOS, like any other type of technology, has flaws and limitations.
- The process of releasing an app on iOS is harder than on Android. An app’s approval normally takes a long time, and it might also be refused if it’s considered irrelevant or unworkable.
- Apple expects app developers to adhere to its interface principles, which make all iOS apps look slick and clean but also somewhat similar. Meanwhile, Google gives designers more creativity when it comes to interface design.
Should you make an app for Android, iOS, or both?
When creating a mobile app, you have two options: create a native app or a hybrid app. Both methods have certain benefits.
By going native, you can take advantage of a device’s unique features. You can also make resource-intensive apps that run smoothly. You’ll need Kotlin developers for Android and Swift developers for iOS if you want to go completely native.
However, you should keep in mind that 90% of apps today don’t require you to use very complicated and specialist native programming. In the vast majority of scenarios, React Native would be a preferable choice because it:
- Provides excellent responsiveness and performance on both iOS and Android, as well as a large developer community with a wealth of pre-built features and frameworks.
- Some elements of the program can be written in React Native, while others can be written in the native language. This increases development flexibility.
- You’ll just have to develop one app rather than two, and you’ll be able to accomplish so with just one team. This results in decreased development costs and improved application and backend maintainability.
- React Native offers no compromise on user experience but a quicker time to market.
Given the current state of the framework, a competent development team may create a complex application using only React Native. They can also use it to create a hybrid app that works on both Android and iOS at the same time.
You can read more about the differences between hybrid and native development here:
Which one is Better for your Business: Native, Hybrid, or Progressive Web App?
Summary – Android vs. iOS: which is better?
Well, it all depends on the specific needs of your project. Before beginning the mobile app development process, think about your business goals, target audience expectations, development expenses, timing and deadlines, and potential barriers, just like you would with any other project.
Deciding to develop either an Android app or an iOS app is a key step. It’s pointless to debate which system is better because both have improved in recent years. Each type of mobile app has advantages and disadvantages; however, the “best” option will be defined by the needs of your company, which can be met by focusing on the elements listed above.
Remember that the revenue models for iOS and Android are vastly different. There is no such thing as a “best way” and an “opposite way” to create income from mobile and internet applications. However, it’s still important to consider the differences between how an iOS software and an Android app might help your business generate revenue.
Working with experienced mobile developers will certainly boost your app’s chances of success. And while you’re here, have a look at our Mobile App Development Services and contact us — we’d love to discuss the possibilities of your app ideas.