There are probably tens of thousands of articles dedicated to the pros and cons of Apple's iOS or Google's Android mobile operating system. Everyone has an opinion, usually quite a strong one.
What I did however find interesting was a comment which I believe reinforces my own thoughts on the simplicity of the Apple devices.
Some background.....Facebook yesterday launched a new version of their App for iOS -- at first you might think this is not worthy of note, however it was a marked change in their approach. Early on in the Apps life it was written on Objective-C (the native language of iOS devices). Facebook then re-wrote the App in an attempt to circumvent the stringent Apple vetting process for Apps and the new incarnation was mostly HTML5. This basically meant that when you loaded the App it was actually loading a web page, albeit very sympathetic to the device constraints. Facebook have now seen the light, decided native Apps are much faster and more reliable and released version 5.0 of the App in Objective-C.
So to the point of my musings, and a quote from one of the Facebook developers. He was asked when a new Android App would be available. Part of his explanation for the delay is interesting......
A lot of time is spent dealing with device-specific issues and limits, and you really have to fight with the toolkit to get smooth interactions. Some vendors have a different HTTP stack (!), none implement the Camera APIs consistently, and reliability of hardware acceleration is…imperfect, GC pauses are terrible, lots of the toolkit insists on doing real work on the UI thread and allocating recreationally. On iOS you can test on 5 devices and basically have the market covered. We have to test on many dozens to get to the top 1/3 of our users, and then the tail starts to get really long.
This confirms my thoughts on Android development -- there are so many incarnations and devices; any developer has much more to contend with during the design and testing phase. The Applie iOS development environment is consistent across iPhones, iPads, iPods making it a much smoother development process.
Google funded the development of Android, then eventually purchased it. They later released it to the Open Source community. While diversification and empowerment is a great concept this does demonstrate the issues which come along with it!
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