Why does iOS get apps before Android? The 5 most significant differences between iOS and Android app development

Android devices are used by more people than iOS devices, so why does iOS get apps before Android? This is a question that many people have been asking for quite some time. With Android being the most popular mobile operating system in the world, it doesn’t make sense that developers would release their apps on iOS first.

Why does iOS get apps before Android?
Why does iOS get apps before Android?

There are a number of reasons why developers might choose to release their apps on iOS first. One reason is that Apple has a smaller selection of devices than Android, which makes it easier for developers to test their app. Another reason is that Apple’s App Store is more lucrative for app developers than Google Play.

Let’s find out the details answer in this post together!

Insights into the current iOS and Android scenarios

Insights into the current iOS and Android scenarios
Insights into the current iOS and Android scenarios

Which is more profitable in terms of app revenue?

Users can download apps from different app stores, like Google Play for Android and the App Store for iOS. Play store is by far the biggest app store, with close to 3.5 million apps available.

Apple’s App Store leads the market in app revenues.

According to a report, Google Play generated more revenue in the third quarter of 2021 than Apple App Store. Users downloaded 27.6 billion apps from Google Play, while Apple App Store accumulated 21.5 billion US dollars in revenue during that time period.

User retention and engagement

When it comes to running an app-centric business, the two primary concerns are building a loyal customer base and how users behave on each platform.

A recent study has shown that Android users are more loyal to Google’s mobile operating system than iPhone users.

Despite the growing popularity of other operating systems, loyalty to Windows remains high among individual users. This is likely due to the efficiency and reliability of Windows platforms.

If you are looking to create mobile apps with the goal of reaching high performance results, then you should not overlook these market insights.

The 5 most significant differences between iOS and Android app development

The 5 most significant differences between iOS and Android app development
The 5 most significant differences between iOS and Android app development

Let’s go to reach about the 5 most significant differences between iOS and Android app development below:

Languages for programming

iOS uses a technology stack that is designed specifically for app development, while Android relies more on Java or Kotlin as an alternate programming language.

Mobile app development is easier and faster to master if you use Swift, as opposed to Java.

Kotlin, a recently introduced programming language that is considered a potential Java replacement, is continuing to gain popularity. This may change in the future as Kotlin development continues to improve.

Environment for development

One of the main differences between iOS and Android development is that iOS has an integrated environment, where everything from the code to the user interface is closely intertwined.

Android Studio is an integrated development environment (IDE) that Google introduced in 2013. It has a wide range of features, including cross-platform support, high readability, and a variety of development and debugging tools.

XCode is a proprietary tool that iOS developers use to fix bugs and develop apps. It provides a variety of bug fixing tools, supports the entire range of iOS devices, and is easy to get around.

What is the best IDE?

Both Android Studio and XCode offer developers a wide range of features and options, so it can be hard to decide which one is better. Both platforms have their advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important for developers to understand them before making a decision.

Android Studio helps quickly generate multiple versions of your app for various devices, while Xcode offers a decent source editor and assistant editor. However, that’s only if you want to touch the surface.

Different developers have different preferences when it comes to programming tools. Some prefer the simplicity of XCode, while others find the IDE too complex for larger projects. Android Studio fans like its advanced code editor and layout designer, though some users find that it consumes too much memory.

When it comes to developing for Android or iOS, most developers only have experience with one platform. This means that they may not be able to compare the different IDEs.

Differences in system design

Both iOS and Android share the same software design principles, which are due to the fact that touch and a stylus don’t have 100% clicking precision. This means that the clickable areas on a screen for iOS are 44px wide, while those on an Android device are 48px wide.

iOS and Android design philosophies differ in how navigation and architecture are organized.

Android apps are developed using modular code – a coding team will have to break the app down into fragments and activities. An activity is equivalent to one screen in an Android app – in case a developer has a project with multiple screens, he’ll end up managing dozens of activities.

Fragments are pieces of a user interface that are often used to navigate between activities, enter a value, and open a new app screen.

iOS application architecture relies on view controllers to control the flow of information within an app. There are a few types of view controllers used for app development, such as page view, tab, split view controllers, and so on.

There are several ways to program controllers, either by writing the code directly or by arranging images in a storyboard and storing it as an XML file. This way, the development speed increases while the risk of errors is minimized.

iOS apps are more manageable and error-free than Android apps. This is due to the iOS system’s design.

The complexity of development

When it comes to app development complexity, Android falls short by a wide margin. This is due to the fact that there are vastly different Android devices with a variety of screen sizes and densities. Apple, on the other hand, releases a limited range of devices and thus has more control over these dimensions.

Device simulators are a necessary part of app development, as they allow developers to ensure that the app will display correctly on all devices. This process requires numerous reviews and revisions, which can be time-consuming and resource-intensive.

iOS is more complex than other mobile operating systems.

Share of the market

According to StatCounter, Android is the most popular smartphone platform among global users. iOS holds only 16% of worldwide smartphone users, but Android devices are popular among over 80% of the population in different regions around the world.

  • US – 52.59% – iOS, 46.98% – Android;
  • Europe – 22.23% – iOS, 72.71% – Android;
  • Asia – 13.85% – iOS, 83.09% – Android;

Why does iOS get apps before Android?

Why does iOS get apps before Android?
Why does iOS get apps before Android?

Cost and complexity concerns for developers

To ensure their iOS apps look and function well on a small range of iPhone and iPad models, developers should start with the most popular devices and then work their way backwards. This will result in applications that look good on a wide variety of devices, regardless of when they were released.

Android devices come in a variety of shapes and sizes, with different processors and versions of the Android software. This means that there is a wide range of options for users when it comes to what phone they can use.

Developers’ lack of enthusiasm for Android is due to concerns about the costs and resources required to make and test their apps for it, as well as the likelihood that users will contact them about unspotted bugs on specific models.

Fragmentation, or the fact that Android devices range in size and capabilities, is a more manageable problem today. This is why many people choose to avoid using Android altogether because of it.

Various development tools are making porting Android apps easier, and there is more data available to help developers decide which Android devices their app will work best on. If developers are upfront about which phones and tablets their app works on, support queries become much less daunting as well.

Many developers still prefer to launch their apps on iOS first, iterate over a couple of updates based on feedback from their users, and then tackle Android – with extra time for testing to ensure the app works well.

Some people might argue that these developers are making more of an effort to serve Android users, not less. However, that may not make the wait for some apps any less frustrating.

Profitability and piracy are concerns for developers

Developers are often reluctant to support Android due to the potential financial benefits they may receive once they do.

According to a recent study, Android users are less likely to spend money on or in apps than iPhone users. Additionally, paid apps on Android allegedly suffer from crippling levels of piracy.

Developers of paid apps that monitor their analytics often find that more people are using their app than have actually purchased it on a store like Google Play. This is especially true for games, where piracy can be a significant issue.

Piracy is a reality on iOS, with some users in the jailbreaking community resorting to piracy in order to install unauthorized software. It’s always difficult to determine how many pirates represent lost sales – would they have purchased the app otherwise? – and if an app is free (or freemium) then piracy is much less of a problem.

Apple’s developers have received more money from the company than Google has.

Distimo estimated that in April 2013, if you added the revenues from iOS’ App Store and Android’s Google Play together, their respective shares would be 73%. However, a year before this estimate, it was more like 81% and 19%.

The number of iOS and Android apps that are released simultaneously is increasing, which means it takes less time for an app to move from one platform to the other.

Developers are still in Apple’s good graces

There are several reasons why some developers do not support Android. Some believe that they are lickspittle Cupertino-loving blinkered Apple fanboys, as do the journalists who write about their apps, and anyone else who praises iOS and/or criticises Android. Others may simply prefer using a more established platform with a larger user base.

I do not work for Apple, although I am probably being paid by them to write this.

I am not employed or contracted by Apple Inc., although I have received payment from them for my work on this article.

There are some iOS developers who focus exclusively on that platform because they like Apple and/or don’t care for Android. However, for others it’s more about resources – small studios and startups starting out choosing one platform over the other (see: Instagram).

There is a risk for app developers who want to stay in good favor with Apple by supporting its devices first or exclusively. They may hope for promotion in the App Store, an appearance in Apple’s ads, and maybe even a slot on-stage at one of its press launches.

The new iOS update is packed with features that developers will love, and it’s clear that Apple values the contributions of developers who use its innovative devices and software.

Which platform should you build for: iOS or Android?

Which platform should you build for: iOS or Android?
Which platform should you build for: iOS or Android?

The app market is huge and growing every day. But as an app developer, you have to make a choice: which platform should you build for?

There are two clear leaders in the mobile app space: iOS and Android. And there are some significant differences between the two platforms that developers need to take into account when making their decision.

Here are some of the key considerations for developers when choosing between iOS and Android:

  • User demographics
  • Development costs
  • App store guidelines
  • Time to market

It’s important to understand the different user demographics of each platform before making a decision. Generally speaking, iOS users are more affluent than Android users. They tend to be early adopters of new technology and trends, and they’re more likely to spend money on apps.

Android, on the other hand, has a larger global reach than iOS. It’s the dominant platform in many developing markets, where lower-cost Android devices are more popular than iPhones.

When it comes to development costs, there are some significant differences between iOS and Android. Generally speaking, it’s more expensive to develop for iOS. This is because Apple’s app store guidelines are more stringent, and it can take longer to get an app approved for release.

Time to market is another important consideration for developers. In general, it’s quicker and easier to get an app onto the App Store than Google Play. However, this isn’t always the case – especially if your app requires approval from Apple before it can be released.

So, which platform should you build for? The answer depends on your specific needs and goals as a developer. If you’re looking to reach a global audience, Android is probably the better choice. But if you’re targeting a more affluent user base, iOS might be the way to go.

F.A.Q Why does iOS get apps before Android?

What apps were originally iOS only?

There are a few notable examples of apps that were originally iOS only, but later made their way to Android:

  • Instagram
  • Snapchat
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest

There are also a number of popular apps that are still iOS only, including:

  • Apple Music
  • Facetime
  • iMessage

While there are some high-profile apps that are exclusive to iOS, the vast majority of apps are available on both platforms. In fact, according to a recent report from App Annie, 92% of the top 200 grossing apps in the US are available on both iOS and Android.

Are apps better on iOS or Android?

This is a difficult question to answer, as it depends on personal preferences. Some people prefer the design and user experience of iOS apps, while others find Android apps to be more user-friendly.

It’s also worth noting that there are some differences in the types of apps that are available on each platform. For example, iOS has a greater selection of paid apps, while Android has a larger number of free and ad-supported apps.

Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference. There are great apps available on both iOS and Android, so it’s really up to the user to decide which platform they prefer.

Is iPhone better than Android?

There are also some significant differences between the two platforms that need to be considered. For example, iOS devices are typically more expensive than Android devices. And while there are a number of great apps available on both iOS and Android, there are still some apps that are exclusive to iOS.

So, which platform is better? Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference. Both iOS and Android have a lot to offer users, so it really depends on what you’re looking for in a mobile device.

What apps does Android have that iPhone does not?

Some of the most popular Android-exclusive apps include:

  • Amazon Kindle
  • Evernote
  • Google Maps
  • Google Now
  • OnePlus Camera

While there are a number of great apps that are exclusive to Android, the vast majority of apps are available on both platforms. In fact, according to a recent report from App Annie, 92% of the top 200 grossing apps in the US are available on both iOS and Android.


So, what’s the reason for this discrepancy? Why does iOS get apps before Android? The answer lies in how Apple and Android devices handle app downloads. When you search for an app on the App Store, it’s downloaded to your device immediately. With Android, however, you have to download an APK file of the app and then install it – a process that can be confusing for some users. This is why many developers choose to release their apps on iOS before Android; there’s less of a chance that someone will stumble across the app while browsing Google Play and not know how to install it.

If you want to learn more about this process – or find out how to develop and market your own Android apps – visit us on

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