How we do business has changed thanks to technology. Now business runs on mobile phones as seamlessly as if working on a computer.
Yet not all mobile phones are equal. Cell phone operating systems have narrowed to the point where the two choices available are iOS (Apple) or Android (Google). Choosing between two operating systems shouldn’t be hard, right? But it can be very difficult.
So how does a business decide in which mobile camp they belong? It comes down to four categories for consideration.
When we talk about hardware, we are talking about the actual phone. The size, style, and features all play a role in hardware choice.
Apple has pretty much locked down the iOS, meaning they are the only creators, producers, and distributers of their phone. What this means regarding hardware is you only have a couple of choices. Apple only has the most recent generations available for purchase.
In contrast, Google has created Android as a mostly open-source operating system. This means you can have almost unlimited options regarding cell phone features, sizes, and overall abilities.
And size is an important aspect. Samsung’s Android phones have generally outsized iPhone, making it easier to read and operate entirely on the phone. Apple has made updates over the last few years, increasing the size of their screen to match Samsung.
Not only is screen size smaller in iPhones, but the battery is also smaller. This allows for most Android phones, depending on the make and model, to have a longer charge. Android phones are the only phones that charge by induction, until the rumored release of Apple's OLED iPhone.
Apple’s current generation, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, run off iOS 10 while Android phones run off Android 7.0 Nougat. Both are full of productivity producing software features, with a lot of them shared between the two operating systems.
The main difference? Apple’s iOS is more streamlined and slightly simpler to use, while Android’s 7.0 Nougat offers more features and customizability for power users.
Plus, Android runs more like a PC and is capable of easy download and file transfers to most other devices. iPhones are compatible with Apple products only, so unless you have a Mac shop you will need to transfer files via iTunes or other Apple products. If your business runs on Macs than an iPhone is the best, most seamless option for between device file sharing.
Both devices have virtual assistants, with Google recently introducing Google Assistant. Apple’s flagship AI in all their iPhones is Siri, which does serve as a viable and useful virtual assistant. However, in most cases Google Assistant comes ahead of Siri in functionality and user friendliness.
Apple's security in their phones is top, mostly due to the locked down nature of the phones. Apps run through a rigorous process before being allowed in their store, and since they have fewer models, patches and updates are quickly and easily pushed out in the case of security breaches and malware concerns.
Apple’s closed shop system allows for good legacy support as well, meaning your older phones will continue getting the newest security fixes even years after release.
Android has some security concerns. Due to the open-source nature, the software operating system is fragmented in different makes and models of phones. This means not every phone on the market has the newest version of Android, and patches coming from Google are difficult to roll out and depend on the phone manufacturer. However, the open-source nature means security issues are usually discovered and fixed relatively quickly.
This is where the two begin to separate themselves. iPhone comes in limited models and has been getting increasingly more expensive as Apple has increased functions. Apple’s anniversary OLED iPhone is rumored to hit the market above $1100 per phone. Granted, there are smaller, older models like the iPhone SE that can work as well.
Instead, Android is available in over 24,000 devices, including tablets. With that many makes and models, there is definitely a phone that fits your business’ budget and function needs.
At the end of the day, there is no right answer regarding iOS versus Android. Both are scheduled to release new operating systems by the end of the year, with iOS 11 coming out in the OLED iPhone in September and Android O coming out in Samsung’s Galaxy 8 in October.
Ultimately, the best mobile phones for your business are the phones that meets your business’ needs. Communicating and partnering with your mobile solutions provider will help narrow the selection until you’ve found the best phone for your business.