Mobile Operating Systems: Which side are you on?

Overview

In the present day, when someone goes to buy a new phone, they are left with one burning question: IOS, Android or Windows. IOS and Android are the two most common, with the former being an Apple creation and the latter is the spawn of Google. Windows OS is much less common, ironic seeing as most of the computers you will come across are Windows based systems. So, let’s take a look at these systems, and see how well they compare.

A quick disclaimer, I have personally used devices which use each of these systems, and I’m not particularly crazy about any of them, I just use them because the alternative is a non-smartphone and, in 2017, that is not an option.

Apple IOS

The IOS, which was once called the iPhone OS, is a system made by Apple for Apple products only. The system was initially developed way back in 2007. Initially, as the original name suggested, the software was for the iPhone range of devices, but has since migrated over to the iPod Touch (late 2007) and the iPad (early 2010). The App store contains millions of applications which are downloadable either for free or for a price.

The immediate drawback with the Apple software is that it is limited to their own hardware. This hardware can be particularly pricey, but die-hard Apple fans don’t bat an eyelid to this.

So, what is it like to live with? I recently purchased my first Apple device, an iPhone, and I was excited to get it running and replace my Sony Xperia I was using. On first impressions, I liked the device and the system. That soon changed, however. The system was prone to crashing, the fingerprint sensor is a bit hit-and-miss, the app store was more complicated than the Google Play store and a host of other inconveniences. Putting music and other media onto the device must be done through iTunes, which is a bit annoying when you’re used to just downloading or drag and drop from a computer. The biggest flaw I have seen is the Wi-Fi. It is prone to cutting out, which is not caused by my access point as it is around 3 metres away from the phone most of the time and, when I want to connect to a new wireless point, I can’t just go in the drop down menu and do it from there like you can on android.

To conclude, I will rate the iPhone and OS a 7.5/10

Android

The Android system was initially developed by Android Inc, which Google bought in 2005. The OS was released in 2007, and the first commercial device brought in the latter part of 2008. Android is based on the Linux kernel and is aimed at mainly touchscreen devices. As with IOS, there is an App store in which the end user can install millions of apps (overall, not on one device. That would be absurd) either free or paid and they range from games to books to productivity apps and everything in between. The system is available on a massive array of devices, from Samsung to LG to Sony to HTC and many many more. The system is present in smart TV devices, which I will talk more about in another blog post, it is present in Smart Wear devices and even digital cameras. This variety means the devices are much more cost effective compared to Apple devices, as you can sacrifice quality in choosing lower spec models from different manufacturers.

The Android OS is nice to use, and every setting you’ll use regularly is accessible in the customisable drop down menu. The system does have it’s faults, programs crash, the phone will often freeze up and be unusable for a short period of time and the updates can often take a while.

Overall, Android gets an 8.5/10 from me, just because I think it is easier and more pleasant to use.

Windows Phone/ Windows 10 Mobile

The windows phone was initially released around 2010, and in 2011 it was announced that Microsoft was to partner with mobile giant Nokia, who were a main player in the mobile industry in the early to mid 2000s. I’m not too familiar with the system, so I won’t go into too much detail. The system is not very popular, and there is not as many applications available in the store as is the case with Apple and Android products.

To conclude

I prefer Android, but the beauty of mobile operating systems is there isn’t a massive choice, and most people will generally use one and stick with it.

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