I spent a lot of time tinkering away on an Excel spreadsheet compiling side by side comparisons of Android and Apple’s iOS operating system features to accompany my latest Listener column – until I realised that PC World had already done an excellent comparison – with Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 thrown in to boot.
Click on the image (left) to see a full-size version of the chart and here’s the accompanying article which came out in October before the most recent software updates to iOS and Android, but is still largely accurate in its comparison of features.
Lack of support for Flash videos (a shortcoming also common to the iPad) and the iPhone’s lack of removable storage remain Apple’s main omissions. Ironically, both of those are deliberately left out and could be fairly easily included if Steve Jobs was that way inclined.
The other main variations centre around whether functionality is delivered natively – built into the operating system itself, or as a third-party add-on.
Ultimately, the performance of the operating systems and the apps that are available via Apple and Googe Android will depend on the processing power and battery life of the Android device you buy. Make sure you read some reviews of the various Android handsets you are considering before parting with your hard-earned cash. The same goes for the iPhone, though with Apple’s one device for all approach, the flaws and favourite features will be much easier to spot in the reviews.