iOS vs Android — it seems to be the defining battle of the mobile age. Here’s some advice regarding iOS vs Android development. (Or should we say Android vs iOS development?)
If you’re looking to build a mobile app for the first time, you may be wondering which platform you should build your app on first: iOS vs Android.
Typically it’s best to build an app on one platform, get feedback, iterate, test, and improve — then build on the other platform.
Here is an overview of the pros and cons of iOS vs Android development, as well as advice on when it might be best to build your app on both platforms simultaneously.
When to Build an Android App First
Android offers several key advantages for the first-time entrepreneur. The Android platform is based on open source software, which makes the barrier-to-entry for cash-strapped developers quite low. This also allows you to use crowd-created plugins and frameworks that makes creation much simpler.
For example, if you wish to create a mobile game for Android, you can use a game framework like AndEngine rather than having to reinvent the wheel by building your own.
Because of Android’s open source licensing, it has acquired a global user base. It has an 85% market share of the world’s mobile devices.
The main markets for Android apps, the Google Play and Kindle stores, also have fairly lenient restrictions on the types of apps you can submit to them, allowing you to take advantage of new technologies like cryptocurrencies when building your app.
Potential Pitfalls of Android Development
Android’s open licensing can be a double-edged sword. Because of the wide variety of different devices and iterations of the operating system, there is a significant amount of fragmentation.
When you build an Android app, you need to test it on several different devices to ensure that there won’t be dependency issues between different versions.
When to Build an iOS App First
When considering iOS vs Android development, it’s important to note that the iOS market has some significant advantages.
While the platform may not have Android’s global following, it is still incredibly popular in the United States, particularly in urban areas like New York City and Los Angeles. If you are targeting American consumers, focusing on iOS development first is the way to go.
iOS is also the best choice for your first platform if your business model relies on things like in-app purchases. iOS apps generate up to four times as much revenue per user than their Android counterparts.
In addition, stability is a crucial advantage that iOS has over Android. Unlike with Android’s platform based on open licensing, you do not have to worry nearly as much about fragmentation.
Potential Pitfalls of iOS Development
While iOS has some significant advantages for your first app, there are some things you should look out for.
Making sure the design of your app looks top-notch is crucial. iOS users have high expectations for the look and feel of the apps they use. Also, while there are some frameworks you can use to help build your app, many of these apps are licensed proprietarily. This will increase your development costs.
iOS vs Android – Ending the Battle by Building Both Apps Simultaneously
Sometimes the best answer to the iOS vs Android development question is actually “both.”
Building iOS and Android apps simultaneously occurs a lot when building enterprise software. A business owner or corporate board looking at your app will want it to work on all the mobile devices they use. Also, any app that requires a network of users, such as a ticketing app, needs to be multi-platform to ensure you are not missing out on a major user base.
In the event that you do decide to build for both iOS and Android at the same time, these 10 cross platform mobile development tools can help.
iOS vs Android: Final Thoughts
Ultimately which app platform you build for first will depend on your business model. Take stock of how you plan to make money and then you will know the right answer to the iOS vs Android development question.