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  • Android or iOS? Which is the Best Development Platform for you to Launch an App?

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    Long time back, before the Pepsi vs. Coke was over; a new war erupted in the digital domain -- Android vs iOS; and that too for pertinent reasons. These two account for almost 98% of all the mobile operating system.

     

    Though Android with its market share of 77% accounts for almost four times the share of iOS, which stands at 19.4%, it is the latter which surpasses the former by a factor of two when it comes to revenue generation.

     

    This makes it critical for companies to decide the best bet for them.

     

    Android or iOS? Which is the best platform for you to launch your app?

     

    There are five crucial factors to be studied before one can decide the best operating system to develop an app. Let’s look into each one of them.

     

    1. Target Audience

    This is the very first question you have to ask yourself before choosing a platform to build your app. The demographic, geographic and psychographic makeup of your target market will reveal a lot about their mobile usage and app preference.

     

    If you are targeting a broader global audience of emerging countries such as those in the continents of Asia, Africa, or South America, you should go in for Android as your OS platform for app development as markets here tend to adopt Android more easily than iOS.

     

    If on the other hand, you wish to primarily cater to consumers from North America, Western Europe or Australia, then Apple iOS is the ideal platform to build your first app.

     

    Also, closer demographic research reveals that Android users largely work technical or mechanical jobs as compared to Apple users.

     

    iOS users, on the other hand, are mainly youngsters with 18-24 age bracket constituting a greater share. Also, the other interesting fact is that women tend to use iOS more than Android.

     

    Market research also reveals that when it comes to incomes, iOS has captured a larger chunk of the affluent market with its users earning 40% more as compared to Android users.

     

    No wonder it is people in managerial positions and professionals who prefer Apple devices over Android devices. From this data, it can be inferred that the audience type and the location would be the deciding factor for choosing the platform to develop your app.

     

    But there are always exceptions to the rule. If you want to target truck drivers or logistic workers in the Western nations, you’d be better off developing an Android app as your target audience would more likely be using Android than iOS despite being in the Western hemisphere.

     

    By the same logic, targeting top executives in Asia would be easier if you have an iOS app.

     

    2. Duration and Cost for Development

    The second most important factor for deciding the platform for your app is the time and the cost it takes to develop an app. App developers know that it is much quicker, cheaper and easier to develop iOS than Android, thanks to the official programming language of Apple, Swift.

     

    Android is mainly written in the Java language, which required more lines of coding as compared to Swift.

     

    Besides, Android app developers have to take into account a number of devices and different software as there is no standardization owing to its open source ecosystem.

     

    Apple’s close environment and limited devices ensure rigid standardization and quick development of apps.

     

    Having said that, it doesn’t mean that iOS is the way to go to create an app. Apple has fairly strict quality rules and a lengthier evaluation process, which means that Apple apps may take a longer duration of time for its approval. And your app may be rejected if it fails to meet the expected Apple’s quality standard.

     

    Thus, more time should be spent weighing each option instead of just jumping the gun.

     

    3. Flexibility or Security

    In the dynamic and ever-changing virtual world, having the freedom to customize your app the way you want or as per the market demands is a great asset. And Android offers it to you because of its open source code.

     

    The one drawback is that, given its open environment, Android is more vulnerable to viruses and other malware attacks and may reduce the app efficiency and user experience.

     

    Apple’s iOS, owing to its proprietary standard, is more protected and secure and results in better customer satisfaction. It is for this reason iOS has captured the enterprise market as compared to Android.

     

    4. Maintenance of App

    According to a Business Insider survey, Android users used operating systems which were more than two years old. So if your app developers are developing an app on the Android platform, then they have to spend more time ensuring that the app so created is robust and steady to ward off any bugs or crashes owing to the older operating systems some devices might be running.

     

    On the other hand, you will find that Apple users have more often than not, updated operating systems.

     

    5. Generation of Revenue

    Monetization is a win-win situation for both the app stores as well as app developers. For this reason, we have come to see both Apple and Google willing to share a higher chunk of the revenue pie with app developers.

     

    Let’s see which operating system offers more promise and more likely to be profitable in the near future. Though Google Play has twice as many downloads as compared to the Apple’s App Store, the latter has twice as much revenue than the latter.

     

    In fact, Android users generally do not want to pay for app purchases. Thus, you can see more in-app ads on the Android apps as compared to iOS.

     

    According to App Annie, a website dedicated to app research, Apple users are more likely to make purchases from in-app advertising and also pay for apps; except in one are --utility apps, where Android is in the lead.

     

    Also, Asians account for more the 40% of purchases made in-app, with China leading the pack for iOS revenue generation.

     

    So if you are developing an app specifically with the intent of monetising it, either through a subscription-based model or in-app purchase model, then hire iOS app developer, as Apple app is a safe bet.

     

    Even so, revenues for Google Play is growing by leaps and bounds coupled with third-party Android stores, though Apple’s App Store will continue to maintain the lead for quite some time.

     

    Thus, in the final analysis, if you want to build an app quickly and at a reasonable cost, then iOS is the way to go. And after monetising it a bit, you can develop your app for the Android platform, once the demand for it comes forth.

     

    Any which ways, you are free to choose the best app strategy in line with your organisational goals.

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