The demand for mobile apps is on the rise today. Regardless of your business type and size, mobile apps are essential to get your brand in front of your target audience. When it comes to app developments, companies have to choose between Android, iOS, and cross-platform mobile apps.
So, the question is which platform is the best for mobile app development? Which smartphone will help you reach out to a wider audience? Android has a higher market share than iOS.
But, we can’t ignore the fact that iOS has opened up some advanced monetization opportunities. The simple solution is to develop a cross-platform mobile app that works well on both iOS and Android. However, not every organization has a budget to invest in cross-platform app development.
Both Android and iOS come with their share of perks and drawbacks. It is best to consider your audience and the smartphones they prefer to shop online. To help you make an informed decision, we have come up with some major differences between iOS and Android. So, keep reading to get a better idea.
Android vs iOS – App Development Cost
The development cost of a mobile app can vary significantly. The total cost of the project depends on the iOS or Android app development services you choose. Some apps are basic, while others need a high-quality interface and additional features.
Usually, the standard price of Android apps is a bit higher than iOS mobile apps. Since Android supports multiple devices with varying sizes, the app development project takes a longer time than usual. The longer the time the development project takes, the higher the development cost gets.
iOS, on the other hand, is restricted to limited types and formats of phones offered as different categories of iPhones. This accelerates the app development procedure and lowers the cost. However, time is not the only factor that determines the development cost of a mobile application.
As mentioned before, the development cost depends on a number of factors, such as technical complexity and feature innovation. Let’s have a look at the estimated costs for iOS and Android app development projects:
- Simple Android and iOS apps with standard features and a basic user interface can take around 2-3 months. The approximate cost of such apps is anywhere between $15k and $30k.
- The cost of the apps that offer third-party payment gateway services starts from $35k. The development of such apps needs at least three months.
- Complex Android or iOS apps that involve advanced features and API integration can cost anywhere between $100k and $500K. These apps take at least 5 months to develop. The common examples are restaurant apps, social networking sites, and taxi-calling apps.
Other than the development cost, the user needs to pay the registration fee to the App Store or Play Store. While Android’s PlayStore charges a one-time app registration fee of $25, iOS charges an annual fee of $99.
Even though Apple apps need less development time, their publishing process is hectic. Publishing an app on Android is as simple as paying the $25 registration fee.
An app on iOS goes through a strict approval process, which could take several days and even weeks.
Android Vs iOS – Which is More Flexible?
The right app development platform depends on who your target audience is and what features they expect from your mobile app. If flexibility and app customizing options are your priority, then Android is an ideal platform.
Being an open-source app development platform, Android offers flexibility and customizing features. You could customize your app or make changes to the features easily on Android mobile apps.
iOS doesn’t allow flexibility in terms of customization. It is super challenging for the app developers to introduce changes to the current features or add some advanced functionalities to the app.
Perhaps, that is the reason why you get to see millions of apps in Google PlayStore. The easy customization and flexible development process make Android a perfect option for companies that need to develop complex applications.
As per the sources, both iOS and Android apps witness updates every year. Since Android is an open-source platform, the updates are released on Android apps in hours. However, the same updates take up to weeks to release in Apple’s App Store.
Android Vs iOS – User Experience
The UI and UX of iOS are unbeatable. While Android’s UX is cool and decent, it isn’t anywhere near Apple’s user interface and user experience.
However, Android has already adapted to the latest technologies such as Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR). Apple may have a better user interface and easy navigation features, but it is quite slow in embracing VR and AR.
Android Vs iOS – Development Complexity
As said before, iOS supports only a limited number of devices including iPods, iPhones, and iPad. On the other hand, Android supports a large number of devices that vary in screen sizes, display configurations, resource modules, and functional formats. With that being said, there’s no doubt that the Android app development process is more complex than iOS.
The multiple devices and different screens make the development process trickier for developers. They need to ensure that the app is compatible with all size screens. Moreover, the developer may have to design an app for different Android versions.
Now that designing an Android app is a complex procedure, it takes a longer time even for professional mobile app development services to build an Android app. In fact, the Android app development process is approx 40% slower than iOS development.
As far as the development complexity is concerned, the iOS platform outperforms Android. The iOS development project hardly takes 4-5 months. In fact, most iPhone apps are developed within 2 months.
Android Vs iOS – Programming Language
The major difference between app development in Android and iOS is the programming language. Both platforms need completely different programming skills. Android apps are developed using the Java language, while iOS apps are based on Swift or Objective C. Some developers build Android apps using Kotlin language.
You could hire iPhone app developers if you want the app development process to go smoothly. This is because Swift is one of the easiest and fastest languages to learn. Being a modern programming language, Swift offers flexibility.
On the other hand, Java is a bit complicated (especially for beginners). Swift is considered the official coding language of iOS devices. This programming language needs less coding and is comparatively easier than Java. One reason why the Android app development project takes a long time to develop is its lengthy coding requirements.
If you intend to develop a mobile application on both Android and iOS, you will need to hire Android app developer and iPhone app development services.
Android Vs iOS – Demographics
Android has a higher market share than iOS. According to the 2016 reports, Android had a total of 2.6 million mobile apps for downloads, where iOS had 2 million apps. Moreover, the total apps download on both Android and iOS were 28.4 billion, out of which, Android devices contributed 20 billion downloads.
The statistics clearly suggest that Android has a higher market share than Apple. Though Android has more users, iOS devices offer better engagement. According to recent research, iOS is used by youngsters and well-educated groups that offer higher engagement. They spend a considerably higher time on apps than Android users.
- 37% of iOS users have completed their graduation, while 80% of Android users have a high-school degree only.
- 67% of iOS users earn more than $200k, while the income of around 24% of the Android users is less than $100k.
- 71% of Android users never got a chance to travel outside their nation, while 50% of iOS users have traveled to approx five different countries.
It is, therefore, important for companies to think about their target audience. Firms need to choose a platform after taking their target audience into consideration. There is no point in spending thousands of bucks only to discover that you have developed an app for the wrong audience.
Android Vs iOS – Privacy and Security
Android is vulnerable to malware and security issues. Being an open-source platform, Android doesn’t offer a great level of security. Most Android devices operate on outdated software since manufacturers delay the release of the latest software updates. As a result, Android users tend to face security issues.
On the other hand, people don’t face the security or malware issues on the iOS device as they do not need to download the mobile app outside the App Store. Apple releases the necessary updates for even old models, making it a secure platform for companies who plan on developing a mobile application.
Android Vs iOS – Monetizing
Is the app monetization your major goal? Considering the demographics mentioned above, it isn’t wrong to say that Android users are less likely to spend on apps. Neither they prefer to download a paid app, nor do they like to spend on in-app purchases.
That is why most apps you find on the Google PlayStore are free to install and feature in-app advertisements. The sole purpose of the companies to design these apps is to spread brand awareness and bring more people to their landing page or eCommerce website.
On the other hand, iOS is considered the best platform for app monetization. Despite having a higher market share than iOS, Android fails to outrank Apple in terms of annual revenue. Let’s have a quick glance at the stats:
- iPhone users are likely to spend money on in-app purchases
- iPhone users pay for most apps, except for the utility-based mobile applications
- Chine accounts for the majority of the iOS revenue.
- Asians are likely to spend more on iOS apps.
If app monetization is your priority, you may want to consider the iOS platform. Companies that need to drive more traffic to their eCommerce website or land-based stores can opt for Android since Android apps have more users than Apple.
So, Which Among the iOS and Android is Better?
If you consider the above-listed factors, it is clear that each platform has its share of pros and cons. While iOS supports only a limited device and offers a cost-effective and speedy app development procedure, it doesn’t help you cover as much audience as Android does.
Similarly, Android apps are flexible and easily customizable. The updates in android apps are released quickly in the app markets. However, its open-source nature makes it susceptible to malware and other security problems. So, which one is better? Let’s see how to choose the best platform for mobile app development.
Choose iOS App Development If:
- You are looking for a platform that offers better customer engagement and higher in-app revenues
- You want the app development procedure to be as simple and quick as possible
- You prioritize customer’s data and privacy
- You are having low brand marketing and app development budget
- You want the app to be developed in the shortest time possible
- Your target audience involves rich and well-educated people
Choose Android App Development If:
- You intend to get your brand in front of a wider audience
- You want your mobile app to hit the PlayStore quickly i.e. without having to pass the stressful approval procedure
- You are looking for a customizable and flexible platform
- You don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars every year to keep your app in the Google PlayStore
- Your audience involves people who have basic degrees and belong to middle-class backgrounds.
So, these were the tips on how to choose between iOS and Android. As mentioned before, both platforms are the best when it comes to customer retention, engagement, and conversion. Developing an Android or iOS mobile app will help you spread brand awareness. Once you are done deciding the best app development platform for your brand’s app, look for a professional and experienced mobile app developer for hire.
That’s it! Hire mobile app developers and strengthen your brand marketing with a high-quality mobile application. Good Luck!