The debate rages on. Which is better, Android or iOS? Proponents of each are as loyal as they come, and each offers their own solid reasoning why their operating system is the best for online gaming.
On one side, iOS users swear that theirs is the best because of the superior gaming experience. And on the other side, Android fans tout their access to vast numbers of games and the ability to customize their devices by adding ROM whenever they need it.
So whether you’re an Android or Apple user, the truth is, you’re a gamer. Gamers want the best experience, access to the most games, and a quality device that won’t quit. Even if you’ve been using one platform for years, maybe you’ve been missing out. Let’s dive in and end the debate once and for all. Which operating system is better suited for online gaming?
Android and iOS are the two main operating systems on the market today. They’ve basically made all other competitors obsolete and are now the duopoly we know, love, and sometimes can’t stand — but they’re what we’ve got.
Apple won the race to market by one year, releasing iOS in 2007. After buying the company in 2005, Google, who now develops Android, delivered its product in 2008. Google’s IP is used almost universally now by big tech giants like Samsung and Huawei, whereas Apple’s iOS can only be used on Apple products exclusively.
Access to games
The truth is that most online games can be found equally in both the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store, however, the gaming library for Android is staggeringly massive.
The big-name companies will always be available for either system, but for the sheer quantity of games, Android wins.
Does quantity always mean better? Maybe.
If it’s early-access you crave then Apple might be the right choice for you. Developers tend to release games on iOS first, before releasing them in the Google Play Store. The reason for this is simple. Apple guards its IP with the power of minimalism. They only have 2 devices to program the games for: iPhone and iPad, making the turnaround to release that much faster.
As with all things in life, money is always a factor too. Historically, Apple users have tended to spend more on gaming than Android users, giving developers a strong motivation to keep their big-spending users happy. As they say, follow the money… to market.
The big-name games and developers aren’t the issue, though. They’ll always look at both systems simply because they have the resources and don’t want to alienate half their user base. No matter the operating system, the quality of the game itself is the main factor. Software providers like powerhouse PlaynGo ensure their games work on all devices.
Despite the availability of many games on both platforms, market research has shown that iOS users enjoy a better, uninterrupted, and bug-free gaming experience than their Android-gaming counterparts. This is due to Apple’s Fort Knox-like approach to system security. Their system is notoriously virus-free and stable… as long as you have the newest iOS devices and updates.
iOS systems also take out a lot of the guesswork. There’s no, “Will it run?” scenarios. Each device is the same and, therefore, the system specifications specifically tell you whether the game will run or not.
Android, on the other hand, is a bit like the Wild West. Here, you have an open-source operating system that can be installed into an assortment of devices. So, although a game might be built for the Android OS, whether you can play it and whether it lags out into oblivion truly depends upon the hardware in the phone itself.
Cost of games and devices
In the not-too-distant past, gaming on Android devices was a great way to spend practically nothing on games. This has changed in recent years, with both platforms charging their customers for mobile games, and with the advent of microtransactions, “free” games don’t always mean free.
To keep up with the newest iOS phone and tablets, you’re looking to spend $700-$1400, depending on how much storage space you want to have. That’s a huge price point, especially considering you could get a solid gaming PC or laptop for the same price.
On the Android spectrum, the latest-and-greatest phones can definitely hit that same price point, but if you’re looking solely at tech specs, you can typically get an equivalent mobile device for about half the price that performs just as well.
The debate rages on
A great gaming device requires a lot of storage space and a solid amount of RAM. Whichever OS you decide to choose, you may end up spending a pretty penny if you are looking for the best gaming device out there.
Although there are strong feelings from users on both sides of the aisle, it seems that this race is almost too close to call. Both sides are equally valid. iOS has a strong support system built-in and has a group of dedicated game developers to back it up.
Android user has a massive indie market and a much cheaper entry point. They also have the benefit of many third-party hardware developers that make specific components for gaming on your phone like the Snapdragon series.
So the question isn’t necessarily which one is better, it’s what you can afford and which OS you feel more comfortable with.