Linked by David Adams on Wed 30th Nov 2011 20:18 UTC, submitted by Oren
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless With WebOS out of the picture and the Blackberry Playbook as good as gone as well, we really only have iOS and Android left until Windows 8 comes out. I’ve finally gotten around to getting an Android device myself and spent the last week trying to see if my theoretical knowledge of the system and what I remember from the last Android device I had (which ran 1.6, viewed as ancient in Android land) fits reality. Read on for a full tear down and comparison on the two OSes.
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v Comment by werterr
by werterr on Wed 30th Nov 2011 21:46 UTC
RE: Comment by werterr
by WorknMan on Wed 30th Nov 2011 22:14 UTC in reply to "Comment by werterr"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

If there are only these two choices I have to say IOS. Because in my experience Android just does not work.


Actually, Android does work... you just have to stick with vanilla Android, or something close to it. This means, for the time being, don't buy any Android phone that doesn't have the 'Nexus' name on it. Pass on all the bullshit skinned 'Frankenandroid' phones and their 3-6 month update cycles.

For tablets, it's the Asus Transformer all the way. Get the Prime if you can afford it (which will be out in a week or two), or the first gen one if you're on a budget.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by werterr
by darknexus on Thu 1st Dec 2011 01:10 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by werterr"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Couldn't agree more. All of these manufacturer and carrier-specific Android roms are a headache. It puts me in mind of the days of Windows Mobile (ugh!!!!) when there were so many slightly different versions of that beast, all with their individual quirks. That is, I've found, an inevitable downside to free software. Fragmentation is a given. Hopefully, Google's more strict requirements for their approval (which most manufacturers do care about, for the Android market if nothing else) will at least curb this excess of fragmentation. I doubt we'll ever be entirely rid of it however.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by werterr
by Slambert666 on Thu 1st Dec 2011 06:07 UTC in reply to "Comment by werterr"
Slambert666 Member since:
2008-10-30

If there are only these two choices I have to say Android. Because in my experience iOS just does not work.


Fixed that for ya...

And the reason for the fix is twofold:
1. iTunes, this program is so bad that it on its own completely destroys anything good that iOS has going for it.
2. Codecs, only a few codecs works on iOS

Reply Score: 5

RE: Comment by werterr
by lemur2 on Thu 1st Dec 2011 09:51 UTC in reply to "Comment by werterr"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

If there are only these two choices I have to say IOS. Because in my experience Android just does not work.


Even though I don't use it heavily, I have an Android phone. It is a low-end Huawei IDEOS X3 (U8510) which cost just $99 AUD for a smartphone. It works just fine. My wife has a Samsung Galaxy S Android phone, and it too works just fine. My son has an HTC Salsa phone running Android, and it too works just fine.

The only member of the family who is having trouble with their smartphone is my daughter, whose phone keeps cutting out all the time. My daughter has an iPhone, and so she spent a great deal more money on it than any other family member spent on their phones.

Reply Score: 2

A few things overlooked
by rexstuff on Wed 30th Nov 2011 22:06 UTC
rexstuff
Member since:
2007-04-06

The author, I think, overlooked a few important things.

For instance, apps that cost money on iOS often have comparable apps on Android that are free. Bonus.

Also, as a power user, I appreciate that Android lets me be in control of the device in a way that iOS certainly does not. Rooting, custom firmware, a much more open Market, and so on and so on. That may not matter much to a 'typical user', but it matters to me, and, I imagine, others.

Reply Score: 6

RE: A few things overlooked
by WorknMan on Wed 30th Nov 2011 22:39 UTC in reply to "A few things overlooked"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

For instance, apps that cost money on iOS often have comparable apps on Android that are free. Bonus.


Yeah, but many of the free apps are also infested with ads, and it's often due to the fact that devs feel that Android users are not willing to pay for apps. Honestly, I'd rather have the option to pay the developer a buck or two and kill the ads.

I know a lot of people are willing to put up with the ads, but Android doesn't often give you the option of choosing one method over the other. Because of this, I just root my Android devices and install adfree ;) But if devs offer an ad-infested version and a paid version, I will still buy the paid versions.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by neruson
by neruson on Wed 30th Nov 2011 22:56 UTC
neruson
Member since:
2011-09-18

Android for me. I can't stand most of Apple's products except for the iPod (I can't live without that!). Nothing personal against Apple. I just grew up using Linux about 90% of the time and Windows the other %10. I like to tinker with my OS's and devices. I can't do that with iOS. Honestly, I wouldn't even use Windows at all if it wasn't for Netflix, DivX streams and gaming...

So basically, if you're a bit of a nerd, poor or generally just cheap then Android. If you're completely technology illiterate and have some money to burn then iOS.

As far as how well they work. I've used both and never really had too much of a problem with either of them concerning typical day to day use.

Reply Score: 3

..
by fran on Wed 30th Nov 2011 22:59 UTC
fran
Member since:
2010-08-06

This review seems to be very objective
Refreshingly different than the "10 reasons why a is better than b" type of stuff.

Edited 2011-11-30 23:08 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Android for me.
by moondevil on Wed 30th Nov 2011 23:36 UTC
moondevil
Member since:
2005-07-08

I just apreciate the liberty that Android gives me as a power user / developer.

Reply Score: 1

Really?
by thavith_osn on Wed 30th Nov 2011 23:45 UTC
thavith_osn
Member since:
2005-07-11

You did a comparison of iOS and Android - and then linked to it on OSNews...

The fanboys from either side will never agree on their "religion" of choice. If Android is actually missing something, it will be in the next version. If there is a lack of freedom on the iOS side, that is compensated by a lower risk of compromise.

iOS makes Android better and Android makes iOS better. You should be very happy the other is there and smile in the knowledge that you made the right choice.

Reply Score: 5

PlayBook
by wargum on Thu 1st Dec 2011 00:12 UTC
wargum
Member since:
2006-12-15

Sorry, but the PlayBook is here to stay. The OS is already terrific and OS Version 2 will even blow the sceptics away. The recent price cuts seem to play out for RIM, since they actually sold out in many locations and thus create more demand for Apps that developers will address.

So, wrong assumption, IMHO.

Reply Score: 1

RE: PlayBook
by 1c3d0g on Thu 1st Dec 2011 04:42 UTC in reply to "PlayBook"
1c3d0g Member since:
2005-07-06

Wishful thinking. I like RIM too, but unless they manage to do a complete 180 degrees on their management and execution strategies, the company is as good as dead. Sad too, as they have acquired some great (QNX) technology that could have given them an edge in real-time processing.

Reply Score: 2

v Not a good day for Android
by bowkota on Thu 1st Dec 2011 00:51 UTC
Android fits my usage patterns
by darknexus on Thu 1st Dec 2011 01:06 UTC
darknexus
Member since:
2008-07-15

Having used both Android and iOS, I'll be the first to say that iOS is more polished in many respects. The trouble is, that polish has come at a price I'm not willing to pay: my ability to use the device I bought as I see fit. This is best illustrated with a concrete example, rather than going into ideological arguments. I use my phone as an all-in-one device (phone, PDA, music and video player, and book reader, among others). I like to listen to audio books all the time, whether I'm reading a new one or just having one on in the background to occupy my mind while doing things around the house. With iOS, if I want to listen to an audiobook, I have two options: purchase a digital copy from Audible or iTunes (forget it, I already bought the book once), or do a lossy-to-lossy conversion process to convert my ogg vorbis audio books (which I use because its size to quality ratio can't be beat if you know what you're doing) to AAC in an mp4 container. Oh yes, I know you can designate certain media in iTunes as an audio book, but that's erratic at best and the files still must be converted to something that iOS can play. So, once converted, I have to load up that bloated monster known as iTunes and sync it (iCloud won't help in this case). The end result is a long conversion process with an inferior sounding copy of the book and a frustrating wait time while iTunes loads all of its useless components into memory. With android, this is much easier. Connect the phone to the computer, copy the book in question over USB, load the book into Akimbo Audiobook Player (or whichever audio book app you prefer) and bingo, all done and ready to go.
In the end, what matters is what works best for your usage pattern. Android, no matter how inconsistent the UI may be at times, simply makes my particular use cases easier than iOS ever will as things stand. If I went back to iOS, I would miss so many things I've come to enjoy that the extra UI polish wouldn't overshadow that for me.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Android fits my usage patterns
by rhavyn on Thu 1st Dec 2011 19:03 UTC in reply to "Android fits my usage patterns"
rhavyn Member since:
2005-07-06

So, once converted, I have to load up that bloated monster known as iTunes and sync it (iCloud won't help in this case). The end result is a long conversion process with an inferior sounding copy of the book and a frustrating wait time while iTunes loads all of its useless components into memory.


Or you could make it accessible by emailing it to yourself, web server, drop box or any number of other ways that don't require you to ever open iTunes.

Reply Score: 1

Neither
by Neolander on Thu 1st Dec 2011 08:37 UTC
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

Honestly, neither. For all I hate Nokia for what they did to Symbian, I'd rather go back to using s40 phones and hack some J2ME apps to get the features I miss ;)

But if I really had to choose, it would probably be Android, because I believe that its technical issues have more chance to get fixed over time than iOS' ethical issues. As an example, it seems that work has finally begun on solving Android's longstanding touch responsiveness problems, whereas one still cannot easily distribute iOS apps that did not receive Apple's approval.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Neither
by darknexus on Thu 1st Dec 2011 09:50 UTC in reply to "Neither"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Ah, Symbian S60. My all-time favorite mobile os. Lightweight, responsive, and it didn't hog the battery. Damn Nokia forever for what they did to it. I held out with Symbian as long as I could, but eventually I gave in for the convenience of actually having decent modern apps. The really sad thing is, if Nokia and the Symbian foundation hadn't gone bonkers with those $200/year certificates for app distribution as of S63rd, there could've been third party Symbian markets for years yet. But who's going to pay that kind of money to develop for a dead platform?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Neither
by _txf_ on Thu 1st Dec 2011 16:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Neither"
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

Ah, Symbian S60. My all-time favorite mobile os. Lightweight, responsive, and it didn't hog the battery.


I liked symbian too. However only 2 of those 3 were correct. I generally found S60 to be kind of sluggish at times, but it was so capable in a device with only physical buttons that I didn't care.

I Think what held it back also was the complete weirdness of symbian c++. If only they had gone with Qt sooner...

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Neither
by darknexus on Fri 2nd Dec 2011 10:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Neither"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

I liked symbian too. However only 2 of those 3 were correct. I generally found S60 to be kind of sluggish at times, but it was so capable in a device with only physical buttons that I didn't care.

I Think what held it back also was the complete weirdness of symbian c++. If only they had gone with Qt sooner...


Ahem, you complain about sluggishness and then wish they'd gone with QT before now? It's a nice language to develop apps with, but have you looked at its resource usage in practical scenarios? Pulling QT into an app means quite a bit of extra memory use, some of which is for libraries the program might not even use. A competent developer, of course, will only load the libraries they need, but how many of those do we have left in the smartphone world anymore? Personally, I've only seen sluggishness from S60 on older devices and even then it was faster than Android is now. I don't think the odd C++ is what killed it. I think Nokia's consistent lack of communication, coupled with the ridiculous app signing requirements and the fees associated with it, are what killed it.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Neither
by bitwelder on Thu 1st Dec 2011 11:52 UTC in reply to "Neither"
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

I fully agree.
I'm also waiting to see the 'new generation' of post-S40 devices.

Reply Score: 2

Very good article
by wocowboy on Thu 1st Dec 2011 10:29 UTC
wocowboy
Member since:
2006-06-01

Very interesting, well-written, and well thought-out article. It reinforces what I have always felt about both OS's, as I have used both and know what each is capable of, and from the previous comments on this site, it confirms every one of my theories.

If you are someone that likes to tinker with absolutely EVERY aspect of an OS and/or device, to make it absolutely YOURS in every possible way, then Android is for you. This implies that you are capable and knowledgable enough to do the tinkering, find the special apps that allow you to do it, and have the ability to root/jailbreak your device to make it what you want it to be. All perfectly acceptable in my opinion.

But if you are a person that only cares to tinker with some basic settings, prefer your devices to "just work", and are happy not delving deep down into things, than iOS is your best option. Again perfectly acceptable in my opinion.

Most of the readers/users on this site belong to the former category, myself included, but I use an iPhone because I am addicted to the smoothness, integration with my other Macs and iDevices, and the entire Apple "experience". I have no problem with others that do things differently. To each his own.

Reply Score: 1

Well...
by Morgan on Thu 1st Dec 2011 12:34 UTC
Morgan
Member since:
2005-06-29

While I understand that the article is posted on a website called "Nothing But Tablets", I feel I must point out that Windows Phone 7 deserves mention even though it is restricted to phones right now.

From what I've seen of it on my new phone this past week, it is the most graceful and elegant phone OS I've ever used. I took a blind leap with it after constant frustration from Android and BlackBerry and I have zero regrets. It's the first time I have yet to be frustrated with a smartphone OS after a week's use, and I've used them all, with the exception of WebOS. From Palm Garnet to S60 to iOS to BlackBerry, WinMo to Android to Maemo, I have yet to find something I enjoy using as much as WP7 (though Maemo comes damn close).

If Windows 8 can improve upon WP7, I fail to see how it won't become Android's biggest competitor on touch devices, surpassing even iOS.

And the ultimate irony for me? This is the second time I've greatly enjoyed software from Microsoft, a company I loathe (Windows 7 is awesome!). Just like with Apple, I guess I can live with hating the company while enjoying their products. Call me a hypocrite, I don't care. (And I still won't buy Sony stuff, I guess I hate them the most).

Reply Score: 2

RE: Well...
by shmerl on Thu 1st Dec 2011 16:08 UTC in reply to "Well..."
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Bloody diamonds?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Well...
by Morgan on Thu 1st Dec 2011 20:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Well..."
Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Well that's a bit melodramatic. To my knowledge none of the three companies I mentioned have killed anyone, though I believe some blame Apple for a factory worker's suicide a few years back.

My reasons for each differ, but all three companies have done things that pissed me off on a personal level in the past. I can tell you what I consider the worst for each:

Microsoft flexed their monopolistic muscle and convinced Compaq not to sell computers with BeOS, which helped to finish off the dying software company.

Apple has been using their patent portfolio to try to put other tablet makers out of business in Europe, since they can't get away with it here in the US. As far as I'm concerned it would be no different from trying to stop Dell or HP from making computers, or HTC and Motorola from making phones. Oh wait...

And as for Sony, well those bastards put Lik-Sang out of business overtly because they were selling Sony hardware without "permission", but it's an open secret they did it to stop Lik-Sang from selling Sega and Nintendo products, as they were a real threat to Sony's market share in Asia and Europe. That flies in the face of logic as Sony was making money off of Lik-Sang and their own executives in Europe enjoyed the fact that they could get Sony gear there when their own company prevented it otherwise.

Of course that wasn't my only reason for hating Sony; there's the rootkit debacle and the fact that for years they tried to cover up serious hardware issues with the Vaio laptop series. But the Lik-Sang deal personally affected me, as it was the only place I could find certain Sega products.

So, hardly a "blood diamond" situation on all counts, but I still have serious issues with each company. I know I don't have to justify my purchasing decisions, but in the case of Windows Phone 7, thanks to Microsoft's patent wizardry they would get more money from me if I bought an Android phone than a WP7 phone anyway, and I get a better interface with WP7.

As for Apple, I haven't bought anything new from the company since 2005 but there's no reason to give up what products I do still own and use. In fact, hanging on to this Mac mini I bought used in 2007 and my 2nd gen iPod shuffle prevents me from buying new products from them. Gotta love the fact that their own high product quality and lasting value actually prevents sales! ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Well...
by shmerl on Thu 1st Dec 2011 21:20 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Well..."
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

I was referring to it allegorically, saying that these companies are known for their dishonest monopolistic practices (which you already listed quite a few above). I'd just avoid buying their products when possible, in order not to support "dark empires".

Edited 2011-12-01 21:25 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Comment by shmerl
by shmerl on Thu 1st Dec 2011 16:02 UTC
shmerl
Member since:
2010-06-08

Neither. I'd choose Nemo/Mer.

Reply Score: 2

The best tool for the job is ...
by kefkathecruel on Fri 2nd Dec 2011 06:11 UTC
kefkathecruel
Member since:
2006-01-17

The best tool for the job is the best tool for the job.

No single analysis is going to answer that question for anybody else. You know better what your needs are. Try both, experience both, make a choice, and move on.

If you can't be bothered to at least consider your options, you don't really deserve the best, IMO.

Edited 2011-12-02 06:15 UTC

Reply Score: 1