The “iOS is Faster and Smoother Than Android” Debate is Over!


Okay, before I start this article, it’s obvious that I am an Android loyalist. Android has been and continues to be my favorite OS. With that being said, I’m going in to this with a completely open mind to be as fair and honest as I possibly can. With that out of the way, let’s talk about iOS vs Android and the old argument that iOS is smoother, faster, has better apps, better build, and so on.

First of all! The old argument that iPhones and iPads are faster and smother than current high-end Android phones and tablets is out the window. That discussion is over folks. IOS is not faster, more responsive, or smoother anymore. Jellybean put the kabosh on that. I recently picked up an iPad mini 4G and have access to the iPad mini Retina, iPad Air, iPod 5, and iPhone 5s. None of the above are smoother or more responsive to my Note 3, Nexus 7 2013 FHD, or LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition. Even my Note 2 and Droid Ultra are plenty powerful enough to go toe to toe with Apple devices.

Are there Android devices that iOS leaves in the dust? Absolutely! The beauty and curse of Android is its open platform that any company or OEM can get their paws on to put out a completely low end piece of crap. So yes…..  iOS does run circles around low to mid range Android devices (except the GREAT Moto G!), and that’s to be expected. When you pay $70 for a no name Android phone from Wal-Mart or Boost Mobile, you’re going to experience lag, a crappy camera, no updates, and an all around awful experience.

Bring in the Note 3, LG G2, Moto X, Sony Xperia Z1, Nexus 7 2013 FHD, Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014, and other newer high-end Android devices. All of the above are different sizes, most have better cameras than the iPhone and iPad. They’re also faster, lag free, have cutting edge technology (NFC and IR blasters for instance), better screens, much more of a WOW factor in conversation with other phone geeks, and all are taking chances with software and hardware, for better or worse, such as the awesome touchless notification on the Moto X and so-so touchless controls on newer Samsung devices. Android is constantly pushing the envelope, where iOS is constantly taking baby steps (quite a few of those baby steps completely copied Android BTW). Build quality is still in favor of iOS devices, but Android OEM’s are making huge strides, taking the Sony Xperia Z1 for example.

Now lets talk about where iOS still completely smokes Google and Android out of the water. That is their ecosystem as a whole. From apps, iTunes, accessories, device syncing, and even overall build quality. Android devices, however, are on their heels. The device syncing that Apple does from device to device is absolutely second to none. I recently bought an iPad Mini and had it synced and setup exactly the way my iPhone 4S was setup over a year ago within minutes. Google and Android really need to get that nifty little feature added to our Android devices, especially for a person like myself that changes devices weekly. These are just a few examples in my opinion that iOS is still a step or two ahead of Android. Although Google is upping their game lately with their very own ecosystem. Google Play Apps, Music, Movies, Chrome and many more features are catching up, if not surpassed (Google Music All Access is second to none).

I’m going to bring this article to an end by saying, it’s all about preference now. iOS being faster or better is an argument that should be left in the Gingerbread days. If you like a simple interface where everything works, accessories galore (due to iOS devices hardly changing shape or size over the years), and you’re not really interested in cutting edge technology brought to your devices by different OEMs, then the iPhone and iPad is without a doubt the path you should take. If you’re looking for an OS that’s constantly pushing the envelope, different sizes, different UI’s, blazing speed, and you like change more than once every other year, then Android is the path you should travel. I do recommend picking one and sticking with it as it can get expensive buying apps, music, movies, and other features from both.

So what is it? Cutting edge or comfort in what you know?

David Quillinan

About David Quillinan

Dave is the owner and founder of Android Fan Network, has a special place in his heart for Google Play Edition devices, and stock Android. When he's not writing for AFN, you can find him at lurking the forums.

  • Grace Martino

    I had prided myself in never have owning an apple product, (DRM is a deal breaker for me) and have always encouraged others to support products that are open source and that will allow you to put whatever you want on your phone/tablet. Android has it right, even if one company makes a crappy tablet using their OS, there are hundreds of other innovators who have used it to push the boundaries of technology. When I received the iPad mini as a Christmas Bonus, I certainly felt like a whiny brat complaining about it, but it was seriously frustrating for me. I find their OS so simplistic that it’s confusing because I’m expecting more and it’s not there. This is coming from a person who tests software for a living and whose job it is to make sure UIs are flawless and easy. I’ve registered as an Apple Developer (oh the shame) and have written up several bugs I’ve found. I’m seriously contemplating selling it and buying a new kindle fire. I tried really hard to like it!

    • Dave12118

      Grace! Nice response and I agree with you 100%. Sure would be nice if you did some guest writing for us here at AFN ;). I think your iOS vs Android opinions/rants would draw a croud. Think about it :)

  • Cat Scanjim

    David, even though you are kind of down playing IOS stuff because it’s not as hackable. That is what 90% of us want, a stable, works every time, quality, hold it’s value, device. Cutting edge devices are for people who don’t really want a dependable phone, they want something the can tear into and break it and then fix it again, like a sweeper.

    • kpetrie77

      I would go as far as to state 100% of people want a device that is stable, works everytime, quality… I can get this in both iOS and Android. But to your point, not many people are going to open the guts of the OS and mess with it. Still, I don’t think cutting edge and dependable are mutually exclusive on either platform, stock, rooted or jailbroken is an owner preference.

  • Dennis McCarty

    Lmao, this is so wrong. I’ve owned the S4 and S5 and both of those had lag. I’ve owned the Note 3 and even with its 3gb of RAM, it lags all the time. Watch a review of the Z1 and it lags also. I’m pretty sure every Android device lags except ‘maybe’ the Nexus 5 and the HTC One. As boring as iOS is, it IS the smoothest experience you can get on any smartphone.