Pardon my French. And my grammar. But one must pity most of the world’s 1.8-billion or so Android device users because what Apple did this week just made owning an Android smartphone or tablet look, well, lame. Sad.
Every year Google introduces a new version of Android. So does Apple with iOS for iPhone and iPad. And every year, almost like clockwork, both Google and Apple issue updates through the year for various apps as well as the OS. Here’s the problem. All upgrades and updates are not equal. Apple’s are better.
Paging Mister Lame
This week Apple issued a mid-year upgrade to iPhone and iPad users. iOS 10.3. Big whoop, right? Apple does that every few months. Google, too. This upgrade to iOS is special. And typical. Both at the same time.
It’s typical, because by the time Apple moves iOS 11 into the market late next summer or early fall, nearly 90-percent of iPhone and iPad users will have upgraded to the latest version. How does that compare to Android? It. Does. Not. There is not comparison, because even now, more than 80-percent of all iPhone and iPad users are on iOS 10.x, while Android’s latest, Nougat, struggles to get to a few percentage points.
Nougat is version 7 of Google’s flagship OS. The largest market share penetration is Android Lollipop with barely 35-percent market share; vs. the more recent Marshmallow at 25-percent (Jelly Bean makes up about 10-percent). That means Android smartphone and tablet customers are using old versions of Android which simply cannot be upgraded the way Apple gets upgrades and updates out to iPhone and iPad users.
Android devices may make up about 85-percent of the world’s smartphones, but not the most recent version, Nougat. iPhone and iPad users remain more secure thanks to Apple’s frequent upgrades while Android device owners remain at risk. Is it any wonder that more than 98-percent of the world’s mobile device malware is on Android OS.
Such statistics change and results come and go, but among mobile devices, Apple’s iOS seems to fare well against the Android hegemony according to NetMarketShare. You’ll see a usability statistic that goes not compare favorably– for Google and Android. Apple’s customers use their devices more and for more functions than the average Android device owner.
Apple updates devices with security and privacy fixes far more often than Google does with Android. It’s not even close. As an example, for iPhone and iPad, this week Apple upgraded the entire file system to APFS, the latest; with more security and performance options built in. That will help to keep Apple’s customers more secure than most of the 1.8-billion Android device owners who remain at risk to the growing threat of malware and government intervention.
Yet, just a year ago, writer Matt Heiman, came up with a plan for Android to get to 100-percent marketshare. When will this occur. Oh, in a few years. Don’t believe it. Apple’s platforms are vibrant and growing in number and maintain an incredible stickiness you won’t see on any of the fragmented Android devices. It could change, yes. But it won’t happen over night, and Apple is a constantly moving target.
Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS are smartphone and tablet operating systems with many similar features and functions. But where it counts, Android don’t got what iPhone users get.