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As of today, the number of smartphone users worldwide has crossed 3.5 billion. This number is increasing day by day, thanks to Google Play store anad iOS App Store that has grown its number of hosting different apps. Google Play store itself comprises of about 3 million apps and IOS App Store has about 2 million apps. So with these numbers in mind, it is very difficult to say which platform the start-ups should use to build the mobile apps.
Market Share And Downloads:
Android and iOS use to enjoy a market share of about 87% and 13% respectively. This number will more or less will hover around these figures only for the next few years at least.
If one compares the yearly downloads too, Android is an undisputed winner with approximately 200 billion downloads compared to about 50 billion iOS Store downloads. With these figures in mind, one can definitely adopt Android platform other than Apple. But it is a debatable topic for which various factors need to be considered. Let’s discuss the same.
When should one Choose Android platform?
- Target Market
Apple users enjoy a market of about 50% only in US. If the start-up is targeting the users in US geographies, the focus should be to develop iOS apps. In case the focus is independent of the geography, definitely Android platform is favourable. Since the market is widespread for Android, the ROI for Android app will be quick compared to App development cost as soon as it is posted on PlayStore.
- Maintaining the compatibility of Hardware devices with the Operating Systems
Apple governs its hardware devices as well as their software cycles on its own. So it is easy for them to control incompatibility issues. But Android is an open source platform and hence various hardware vendors are releasing various hardware devices in the market. These issues make life of the android application developers difficult at the time of testing and quality control. Thus, Android compatibility fixes take time and increases the maintenance time and cost.
In case the start-up is looking to customize the applications as per the business requirement, Android is a better choice being an open source.
When should one Choose iOS platform?
As iOS apps and platforms are governed by Apple independently, it gives a strong confidence to the clients who are looking to keep the privacy of their data and user information. Android apps have more security vulnerabilities compared to iOS. iOS apps protect firmware and software using stringent security measures.
- Strong Customer base
Most of the Apple users rely on Apple’s quality and performance and are very loyal to the brand. It is always seen that an Apple user after using Apple devices does not prefer to switch to any other platform.
- Low compatibility and testing
As mentioned before too, Android devices need to be tested comprehensively with respect to Android OS, hardware devices, brands etc but in case of Apple, the devices and OSes are lesser in number. So it is much easy to do these types of compatibility testing in case of Apple devices.
After reading the above pointers, it is very clear that there is no specific choice to select Android or iOS. It depends on the need, geography, domain, and business idea of the start-up.
The above article is authored by Mr. Avneesh Kumar Agarwal, Founder & CEO at SpeckyFox.