Apple wowed the world with its overhauled iOS 7, which changed the look, feel and functionality of the operating system. However, Google returned by launching its own system update, Android KitKat, which sports much subtler differences.
Is one operating system necessarily better than the other? Or do they just have their own individual quirks? Here we take a look at Android KitKat vs iOS 7…
First things first, Apple’s iOS 7 has changed completely when it comes to design. Moving away from the tired, corporate look of iOS 6, the new operating system has been given a bit of life and vivacity. With quirkier, more colourful icons, iOS 7 has brought iPhones to the modern era, making their home screens a pleasure to look at.
While you might argue that Android has always had a fun and vibrant design with asymmetrical app icons, this has been developed further with KitKat, making icons slightly larger and more dominant on your app screens.
Also, with KitKat’s full screen mode, users can make the most of every inch of their phone’s screen when reading books, browsing webpages or playing games without getting disturbed by incoming notifications.
So when it comes to design, both operating systems are pretty much neck and neck, though Google’s subtle changes might go unnoticed by many an Android user, perhaps working in Apple’s favour…
One key addition to iOS 7 is the quick controls that iPhone users can now perform. iOS 7 has gone a bit Android-esque with the notification centre; by swiping from the top of the screen downwards, iPhone users can now see notifications from a specific day, any missed calls or messages, and a list of all incoming notifications at a glance.
Continuing in this almost Android-inspired phase is the control centre. The control centre can be accessed by swiping upwards from the bottom of your iPhone screen, allowing you to change your screen, volume and Bluetooth settings, as well as giving the option to launch the torch, camera or calculator.
Android KitKat, on the other hand, has always benefitted from these swipe actions which allow you to quickly take charge of your phone. And with the Google Now function which sits permanently on one of your home screens, Android KitKat offers even more in the way of quick controls.
Google has really pushed the boat out when it comes to its complete messaging redesign. Rather than using a number of separate messaging apps, Google has brought them all together in the one Google Hangouts app.
Those of you familiar with Google services might be acquainted with Google Hangouts, which is an extension of Google Chat. However, with the new collated Google Hangouts app, users can chat and text using the very same program. Great for Google fanatics, but not so great for those who like a traditional messaging app on their smartphone.
On the other hand, Apple has kept things familiar with iOS 7, and has simply made a few small additions, such as giving you a time stamp when each of your messages are sent or received. Although this might seem a little reserved compared to Android KitKat, I’m not quite sure everyone is ready to ‘hangout’ just yet…
The one area where Apple is probably always going to win is with Siri, its famous voice command function. Simply hold down the home button and your own personal assistant will pop up to help you with any request you may have. Want to text your mum to tell her you’re running late? Just ask Siri. Need to find out the latest Man U score? Just ask Siri!
On the other hand, Google has established its own voice recognition function, accessible with Android KitKat from any home screens. Although Google Now works in much the same way as Siri, we can’t help but miss Siri’s comforting tone of voice which seems to know us so well. After all, if you tell Google that you love it, it will only generate a Google search for love. Tell Siri you love it and you get a deep and heartfelt response…Well, sometimes.
Comparing the two operating systems is no easy task; while iOS 7 offers the biggest change in design and functionality compared to its predecessor, this does not necessarily make it future proof; in fact, some might even argue that iOS 7 needed such an overhaul in order to keep up with Android’s regular updates.
So when you’re looking for your next phone contract, which will you choose?
iOS 7 has already divided so many iPhone users this year due to its massive renovation, and with KitKat sporting much subtler changes, will we see Android come out on top in 2014?