Apple iOS vs Windows Phone
Apple iOS and Windows Phone are two proprietary mobile operating systems by Apple and Microsoft respectively. Following is a review on their similarities and differences.
Apple iOS was initially designed and meant for the much famed Apple iPhone. However as Apple got more innovative with its devices the operating system is now available on iPad, iPod Touch and Apple TV. However this article will mainly focus on the versions available in iPhone and iPad in order to reduce scope creep. It’s also note worthy to mention that iOS has undergone a series of releases and as a result has the ownership for great many features. The article will there for focus on the core features as well as the latest features of the platform.
Apple iOS is a proprietary mobile operating system derived from Mac OS X. Apple develops both operating systems as well as devices. This is an operating system with a well managed application eco system closely guarded and controlled by Apple. Applications that are made available in the App Store for download by iPhone/iPad users, are tightly screened by Apple. There for users can be at ease that their devices will not be contaminated with malicious applications.
Devices with iOS primarily facilitate a multi-touch screen for user input. The screen facilitates an array of gestures such as tapping, pinching, reverse pinch, swipe and etc. The responsiveness of the screen is of good quality in almost all the devices as one would expect from a pioneer in multi-touch technology.
The home screen of an iOS is managed by “Springboard”. It displays the applications installed in the device in a Grid format. The bottom of the screen includes a dock, where users can see most recently used applications. Searching was made available from home screen since iOS 3.0 and users can search across media, email and contacts in their phone.
Apple iOS supports multi-touch displays. In fact, iOS is the pioneer in multi-touch technology. Gestures such as tap, pinch, swipe left & right are available for iOS. The release latest version, iOS 5 introduced advanced gestures such as closing four/five fingers together to return to “Springboard” are also introduced.
With introduction of iOS 4 a concept called “Folders” were introduced. Folders can be created by dragging one application on top of another to create a folder. The folder can contain a maximum of 12 applications. This was similar applications can be grouped.
During its early releases iOS did not allow multitasking for 3rd party applications for it was assumed that allowing the feature would drain too much battery. After the release of iOS 4, multitasking is supported for using 7 API’s allowing seamless switching between third party apps. Apple claims the feature is offered while not compromising battery life or performance.
Earlier versions of iOS used to block the entire screen with notification alerts. The release of iOS 5 has demonstrated a less intrusive Notifications design. As of iOS 5 notifications are aggregated on top of the screen to a window that can be dragged down.
FaceTime is what iOS calls video calling. FaceTime can be used with the phone number on iPhone, iPad and iPod touch (4th generation). A Mac with iOS installed need to use an email ID for using FaceTime. However FaceTime may not be available in all countries.
Since early versions iOS included email clients, calendar, camera, photo viewer and more. Safari is the browser included in iOS. These features are common place with most mobile operating systems. Apple manufactures phone models such as iPhone 3G s, iPhone 4 and tablet versions such as iPad with iOS installed. Most of these devices boast high quality displays such as retina display with a high pixel density, 2 way cameras, video chat and a large number of applications and games built for them in the App store.
Windows Phone is the successor of the well known “Windows Mobile” operating system. The official release of the Windows Phone was done during the first quarter of 2010 at Barcelona. The interface has been completely re designed from previous versions of Windows mobile operating system. It is important to notice that Windows Phone is a rebranding of Windows Mobile operating system. With this Microsoft joins the highly dynamic smart phone market with a good momentum. Microsoft allows 3rd party device vendors to port the Windows Phone operating system and sets strict and clear guidelines on system requirements.
After Microsoft rebranded the operating system, two major versions were released; Windows Phone 6.5 and Windows Phone7 and its updates code named “NoDo” and “Mango”. The official release of Mango is much anticipated with few previews early this year.
A much applauded feature in Windows Phone is the nicely designed user interface. The “Metro UI” as Microsoft would call it includes live tiles (Small Square like areas on the screen which bring user up to date with latest data). These animated tiles include missed call alerts, updates from social networks, message alerts, etc. Most Windows Phone screens will not miss a chance to rotate and flip and thereby making the “new user” awestruck and “a more accustomed user” irritated (maybe). Windows Phones feature a high resolution, multi touch screen.
Social network integration has become a must in most mobile applications. Most mobile operating systems tend to support the Social networking “need” by native or third party applications. The latest versions of Windows Mobile are not shying away in this aspect either. Latest versions of Windows Phone include integration with social networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Windows Live.
In most recent versions of Windows Phone most features are categorized under ‘Hubs”. Contacts are organized via “People Hub”. Contacts can be manually entered and at the same time can be imported from Facebook friends, Windows Live contacts, Twitter and LinkedIn. An outstanding feature of the “People Hub” is the ability to create groups from the contacts in the phone address book.
Email, messaging, browsing, calendars and all other applications necessary for a good enterprise ready mobile operating system is available in these latest versions of Windows Phone. But the biggest advantage Windows Phone has over its contemporary’s is the “Office Hub”. This enables users to create and edit Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote documents. SharePoint workspace is also available in “office Hub”.
Zune is the application providing entertainment and Synchronization between PC and phone. Zune manages music, video and photos on the phone. The Windows Phone market place distributes Music, video and podcasts for Windows Phone platform. The windows Phone market place can be accessible via the Zune client installed in Windows Phone devices. Earlier versions of Windows Phone allowed Pod casts to be first downloaded to the PC and then loaded to the phone via Zune. With the latest releases of Windows Phone direct download to phone is expected.
Third party applications and games for Windows Phone have to be downloaded from the Windows market Place as well. However it is clear that the number of applications available is not sufficient.
What’s the difference between Apple iOS and Windows Phone?
Apple iOS is a popular mobile operating system developed by Apple while Windows Phone is the rebranded mobile operating system by Windows. The initial release of Apple iOS was in 2007 and Windows Phone was initially released in 2010. Both operating systems are intended for modern smart phones. Apple doesn’t license iOS to third party devices and manufactures devices as well. Microsoft only deals with managing the Windows Phone operating system and allows third party devices to create devices with Windows Phone running. Applications for iOS can be downloaded from Apple App store and applications for Windows Phone can be downloaded from windows Phone marketplace. Apple App store has the largest number of mobile applications among all the mobile application markets and Windows Phone market place is not in par with App store in terms of application availability. Apple iOS has iTunes to synchronize iPhone content and PC content the similar application for Windows Phone is Zune. In terms smart phone market share iOS has a larger share than that of Windows Phone which is a late entry to the market. While iOS can be found in phones such as iPhones and tablet devices such as iPads, Windows Phone is only available in phones at the moment.
Comparison Between Apple iOS and Windows Phone
• Apple iOS is a proprietary mobile operating system developed by Apple, and Windows Phone is a proprietary mobile operating system by Windows.
• Apple iOS was initially released in 2007, and Windows Phone was initially released in 2010.
• Devices with Apple iOS is created by Apple, while Windows Phone licenses the operating system on third party devices.
• Between iOS and Windows Phone, only Apple iOS is available in a tablet device which is iPad.
• Applications, music, video and podcasts for iOS can be downloaded from App store, and applications, music, video and podcasts for windows Phone can be downloaded from Windows Phone marketplace.
• In terms of smart phone market share, devices with iOS has a larger share than devices with Windows Phone 7.