• Your favorite

    Apple

    ,

    iPhone

    ,

    iPad

    ,

    iOS

    ,
    Jailbreak
    , and
    Cydia
    site.
  • iPhone V.S. Android: Update History, And Why Apple's Walled Garden Isn't So Bad



    Critics of Apple's "Walled Garden" approach to iOS often complain about how much control Apple has over what developers can do with their mobile operating system. Not enough flexibility, too many rules, not open source and the complaints go on and on. However, the uniformity of the "Walled Garden" has some benefits for regular users and Jailbreak users.

    Pictured above is a graph showing the incredible difference between iOS updates and Android updates. Apple has proven to support their iPhones across multiple iOS updates—major and minor—whereas Android handsets are often left out in the cold when subsequent Android OS updates are pushed out. If and when they do get updated, it isn't the responsibility of Google to provide the update, rather it is the carrier's to distribute out approved updates. Handset makers lack the complete control Apple does.

    This incredible discrepancy hasn't improved. Google even promised in May that it would make an effort to put an end to the rampant fragmentation affecting Android devices. Looking at the table, Apple supported the original iPhone for three subsequent years after its release. The iPhone 3GS is in its third year after release and even runs the latest version of iOS. Android handsets on the other hand often ship with older versions of the Android OS, and are incredibly slow to upgrade. Some phones never even see the current version of Android. The HTC Aria has never—since it's release—ran the latest version of Android. Even when the Aria was updated the phone went from two versions of Android behind to just one.

    This isn't a problem that plagues non-flagship handsets either. The HTC Evo 4G—released last summer and is still being sold—forced users to use an older version of Android for 6 months before being updated to the current version of Android (2.3 Gingerbread).

    This fragmentation creates a headache for developers. Those wishing to product programs that reach the widest audience must produce multiple versions of their applications across multiple handsets with varying processor speeds, screen sizes, and memory. This forces developers to choose which version of Android to currently support, and whether or not to update their programs when a new OS comes out.

    Granted Android is an open platform and infinitely customizable, this doesn't always equate to a romantic developer dreamland. The iOS platform, for all its attempts to be a Walled Garden ecosystem, will never be truly that. Apple provides developers and users who want to play by the rules with an ecosystem where they can make a lot of money, and do so with very little headaches. For the rest of us, those who like to think outside the box, all it takes is a little elbow grease to make Apple's iOS just as customizable as Android. This is why the Jailbreak Community exists.

    Apple's Walled ecosystem is also why the Jailbreak community is so successful. Developers know the hardware, they know their programs are going to operate across hundreds of millions of devices without compatibility issues, and it lets them focus time and energy on producing great games, tweaks, and hacks instead of wasting time making sure everything is compatible across a million varied devices.

    Obviously we would love for Apple to open up iOS and allow every tweak and hack access to the App Store. But, for all of its annoyances, and problems, the predictability, stability, and familiarity of each subsequent iOS release is more a blessing than a curse.

    Source: Minyanville
    This article was originally published in forum thread: iPhone V.S. Android: Update History, And Why Apple's Walled Garden Isn't So Bad started by Phillip Swanson View original post
    Comments 40 Comments
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      Nice write up Phil.
      Sorry iOS is TKO over android anyday for me. Everybody has some real good points on why they think their choice of OS is better but in all reality it comes down to what you like. Enjoy your device and let it be somethig that expresses you. Or simply just works
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      IMHO the reason Phil compared iPhone vs android (and not nexus phone) is because google markets the OS and not the phone. No where in any advertisement have I ever seen "get the nexus if you want to be able to update" hell the phone that put android on the market was the droid.

      Also what I got out of this topic was the ease of development for 3rd party vendors. Because the iPhone has been consistent right now 1 SDK will take care of all currently supported iPhones. Making it easier and less of a hassle to provide updates and continue developing new things to a broad audience.

      So to a person that knows nothing about android, I would never know that I was buying a phone that would not be updated unless it was a nexus
    1. BredyHeron's Avatar
      BredyHeron -
      This is a very valid point. I really like IOS, and I love android......AFTER its been rooted and running a custom ROM. Most if not all factory ROMS are terrible, due mostly to the bloat ware installed in them by ATT, vzw, etc etc.

      @ Phil Swanson-in all fairness you might've mentioned in your article that pretty much any android device can run the most current android version available after root is achieved ;-).

      I like this product!
    1. IB1GMANI's Avatar
      IB1GMANI -
      Yep this is so true I have had all the iPhone and a htc evo and now the iPhone 4 and I will never buy a android phone again android is trash and laggy and crappy battery. There's nothing better than a jailbroke iPhone and Now we got ios5 it's only getting better and all the stuff u are going to be able to do now with the update and it being jail broke is going to be great iPhone for ever baby.
    1. Jmills87's Avatar
      Jmills87 -
      This inforgraphic suggests that 100% of all iPhones are on the most current major build..... I can assure you that this is not even remotely true. I do iPhone repairs on Craigslist and at least 4/10 of the iPhones that come across my desk are NOT on the most current major build. So huge fail on the part of the creator of this infographic.
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jmills87 View Post
      This inforgraphic suggests that 100% of all iPhones are on the most current major build..... I can assure you that this is not even remotely true. I do iPhone repairs on Craigslist and at least 4/10 of the iPhones that come across my desk are NOT on the most current major build. So huge fail on the part of the creator of this infographic.
      Think your misunderstanding the info graph. The info graph is taking the 1st three years of each device and illustrating if that device is being updated and is on current major version.
      The point it is making is that for the 1st three years of the the original iPhones life it was supported on all major updates. Half way through ios3 is when apple stopped pushing updates to that phone.

      It's not illustrating individual phones.
    1. rohunb's Avatar
      rohunb -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jmills87 View Post
      This inforgraphic suggests that 100% of all iPhones are on the most current major build..... I can assure you that this is not even remotely true. I do iPhone repairs on Craigslist and at least 4/10 of the iPhones that come across my desk are NOT on the most current major build. So huge fail on the part of the creator of this infographic.
      The article indicates update availability, not that every single end-user has actually updated.
      As a side note, I was under the impression that the 3G was capped at 4.2.1. Is this not true anymore?
    1. Dragon M.'s Avatar
      Dragon M. -
      Quote Originally Posted by rohunb View Post
      The article indicates update availability, not that every single end-user has actually updated.
      As a side note, I was under the impression that the 3G was capped at 4.2.1. Is this not true anymore?
      No, it's still capped at 4.2.1. But the graph is relative to the time of release.
    1. xxhorseriderxxx's Avatar
      xxhorseriderxxx -
      You picking on android's updates does not make any sense. Apple is almost forced to release lots of feature updates because their devices would stagnate over time due to the fact that officially you can't add any functionality outside of an icon on your springboard. Android on the other hand... if you're stuck an update behind, chances are you either bought a low end phone (that isn't worth having Cyanogenmod ported to it), or a phone with a locked bootloader that can't have custom firmware. Going forward from gingerbred, there's no real performance enhancements to the updates, just new (subtle) features. Because of android's openness, you can legitimately buy apps on the android market that add systemwide tweaks, hacks, or features that give the same functionality you would otherwise gain if you had bought an iDevice instead. Take Siri for example, android gained a Siri app within days of Apple releasing it. At this point anyone using iPhones are really behind the curve of things... iOS is now only useful as I see it on iPods... https://market.android.com/details?i...ssistant&hl=en
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      To the above post. Your android wouldnt even exist if it wasn't for the iPhone. The iPhone paved the way for mobile devices.

      What android has in features it lacks in performance. As stated by every other person in this thread, To make your android device perform anywhere close to Iphone you need to root your device.

      So comparing apples to apples, rooting is to android as jailbreak is to iPhone. Only difference is we dont have to jailbreak to make our phones perform the way it should, only to unlock more capabilities. Jailbroken Iphone > rooted droid.

      Besides that point, your argument has no validity, because as i stated before, android is an OS and not a phone. When google talks about there market share of android, they include every device (low or high) that use android. So Phil's article is 100 percent accurate in comparing the 2.

      Android market place can only dream of having the quality developers that iOS has
    1. TooSlo's Avatar
      TooSlo -
      Quote Originally Posted by subywrex View Post
      To the above post. Your android wouldnt even exist if it wasn't for the iPhone. The iPhone paved the way for mobile devices.
      I hate to point this out, but you may want to do a bit of research on Android before making statements like that.

      Android (operating system) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      Google purchased Android Inc in 2005. This was after Android Inc was formed in 2003 and was already beginning design of a mobile OS.

      Mobile devices existed before iOS. WM existed, Palm existed with their line of Treo devices. If you want to talk about paving the way for mobile OS design, credit deserves to go to Microsoft and Palm for their initial design of smartphones and touchscreen (albeit resistive screen) devices.


      In regards to the article, it's biased to say the least, and shows the problems with carriers having the ultimate decision to push updates out to users. With Gingerbread (2.3) and beyond, the update process is slowing down to a pace that more resembles iOS. Considering this, over the next couple years there may be a paradigm shift in the way updates are handled, but carriers meddling with those updates are still going to be a problem. Look outside of the US, updates are generally sent to devices much quicker in comparison.
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      Quote Originally Posted by TooSlo View Post
      I hate to point this out, but you may want to do a bit of research on Android before making statements like that.

      Android (operating system) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

      Google purchased Android Inc in 2005. This was after Android Inc was formed in 2003 and was already beginning design of a mobile OS.


      In regards to the article, it's biased to say the least, and shows the problems with carriers having the ultimate decision to push updates out to users. With Gingerbread (2.3) and beyond, the update process is slowing down to a pace that more resembles iOS. Considering this, over the next couple years there may be a paradigm shift in the way updates are handled, but carriers meddling with those updates are still going to be a problem. Look outside of the US, updates are generally sent to devices much quicker in comparison.
      Again all that wiki does is solidify my statement. Android is an OS. You know the statement a team is only as good as there weakest player? As long as there are low quality android phones, the update problems listed in this article still exist.

      And yes maybe articles are a little bias toward apple, but this is modmy"i" lol.

      Bias or not the statement is still true idevices have proven to be updated with major updates in a 3 year lifespan. I remeber buying an android phone and then finding out that there was an OS that was already better and no timeline when an update was coming.

      But again this article wasn't about who is better than who it was simply from a developers stand point.

      Meaning if ur a developer in today's society, it would take more time and effort to develop for a platform that ranges in hardware and firmwares, than iOS that has similar hardware and firmware
    1. creasy425's Avatar
      creasy425 -
      Quote Originally Posted by subywrex View Post
      What android has in features it lacks in performance. As stated by every other person in this thread, To make your android device perform anywhere close to Iphone you need to root your android
      in all fairness, it's not any short comings due to the android OS itself that leads most people to root. It'd the crap ware installed by the service providers that ruins the experience. Take an android ROM that's been stripped of all the provide added programs, and it's neck and neck with IOS.

      I can see and understand you/others blaming google for allowing ATT, VZW to add their own software to the android OS, but IMHO that's kinda splitting hairs.
    1. TooSlo's Avatar
      TooSlo -
      Quote Originally Posted by subywrex View Post
      Again all that wiki does is solidify my statement.
      I'd suggest looking at more than just the link I posted and what I was saying in context.

      You made a statement that iOS paved the way for mobile devices, and I pointed out that was incorrect. While iOS may have mainstreamed the smartphone market, it hardly created it.

      We're obviously talking about different things, so I'm just going to leave this conversation because I realize it's not going anywhere meaningful and I have better things to do.
    1. confucious's Avatar
      confucious -
      Quote Originally Posted by TooSlo View Post
      I'd suggest looking at more than just the link I posted and what I was saying in context.
      Android wa an OS - this is what the posted after iOS was released Android Demo - YouTube - iOS was the game changer

      - or do you see this differently?
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      Quote Originally Posted by TooSlo View Post
      I'd suggest looking at more than just the link I posted and what I was saying in context.

      You made a statement that iOS paved the way for mobile devices, and I pointed out that was incorrect. While iOS may have mainstreamed the smartphone market, it hardly created it.

      We're obviously talking about different things, so I'm just going to leave this conversation because I realize it's not going anywhere meaningful and I have better things to do.
      Yes how can you doubt that the iPhone paved the way for handheld devices??? Just because android was started back in 2003 doesn't mean it started it. I'm sure apple was working on iPhone back then as well.

      I'm not being abrasive in my arguments as I think android is great, it's not for me but I can see how it is for many others.

      So no disrespect to you, I personally think that this article has merit, and is on point. Yes there may be some good android phones out there that get updates, but those are a small portion of android as a whole.
    1. Simon's Avatar
      Simon -
      The iPhone and iOS was not the first smartphone no. But it totally changed the meaning of the word smartphone. None of the "smartphone's" that came before the iPhone would be considered that by most people today. IMO I don't even consider a Blackberry a smartphone anymore. It totally changed the game and Android would not exist (at least not in it's current form) without iOS.
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by subywrex View Post
      Yes how can you doubt that the iPhone paved the way for handheld devices???
      Much like motorola and Nokia paved the way before Apple (and others paved the way before them). Let me ask this, why does it matter? I could say that the iPhone may be nothing without Nokia, Moto, etc. etc. quite accurately. What difference does that actually make?

      iOS greatly influenced Android and Android has greatly influenced iOS. Why can it not just be left at that?
    1. DayumQuitPlayin's Avatar
      DayumQuitPlayin -
      I guess some people missed what this topic was really about.

      It's basically talking about developing on iPhone vs Android powered devices. It's not about which phone is better in a general sense, it's about which phone is easier to develop for in regards to the phone's support from their manufacturer
    1. billywockeez's Avatar
      billywockeez -
      Quote Originally Posted by DayumQuitPlayin View Post
      I guess some people missed what this topic was really about.

      It's basically talking about developing on iPhone vs Android powered devices. It's not about which phone is better in a general sense, it's about which phone is easier to develop for in regards to the phone's support from their manufacturer
      the best comment in this thread

      my old iphone 3g still in good condition and i still can play the latest angry bird version. it means for 3 years old devices, iOS is more friendly, and iOS developers can develop an apps for old iDevices.