The Instigator
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The Contender
Con (against)
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Apple's iOS is better than Google's Android OS

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/23/2012 Category: Technology
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,525 times Debate No: 21417
Debate Rounds (5)
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This debate will argue that Apple's mobile iOS is better than Google's mobile Android OS. I will take the Pro side and argue that Apple's iOS is the better OS. Con will argue that Android is the better OS.
In round Two, we will state our arguments followed by rebuttals in round Three. Round Four will be our final arguments followed by our conclusions in round Five.


I will accept this debate. I am not an Apple-Hater (although I am not pleased about the whole FoxConn thing) and hope this debate does not cause the usual fanboy reactions.
Debate Round No. 1


Thank you for accepting this debate. Just to point out I am in no way a Android hater and enjoy both OS's. It is important to vote based solely on the argumentation and not personal preference.

To begin my argument let me first define a mobile Operating System as the software platform on top of which other programs, called application programs, can run on mobile devices such as mobile phones, smart phones, PDA's, and handheld computers. [1]

Apple's iOS is a better operating system than Android because the User Interface (UI) is much more user friendly than Android's UI.

The whole purpose of having a mobile OS is to provide end users with the ability to run applications efficiently and effectively. This effectiveness is a direct correlation to the users interactions with the device's UI, and therefore a more user friendly UI results in a more effective and efficient platform for application and thus a better OS.

iOS's UI is better than Android's UI because it is much simpler and more efficient. iOS provides the user with a paginated view of all installed applications that can be easily navigated by swiping through these pages. All applications are easily accessible to the user and can be grouped into folders to maintain organization and accessibility. This is a more efficient way of managing applications as opposed to Android's use of an Application drawer, which puts applications out of the users initial view and requires an extra step to access them, making it less efficient than iOS.

Another way in which iOS's UI is better than that of Android, is in the user's interactions with the actual devices. iOS devices contain very few buttons including the home button, sleep/power button, volume control buttons and ring/silent button on the iPhone only and screen lock button on the iPad only.[2] Having such few buttons on the device provide the user with simple way to control the device as opposed to Android devices which typically contain at least 7 buttons making the device more complex and require more physical actions of the user. This shows that iOS has a more user friendly physical UI and ultimately contributes to the OS as a whole.

iOS's superior UI provides a more efficient platform for users to interact with their applications than Android does, thus it is the better OS.



Android OS (AOS) is a better operating system than Apple's iOS (iOS) because of the freedom and diversity that Android allows.

Android is open source and is all about freedom and diversity.

1. Each manufacturer/service provider can tweak the basic android software as they see fit. Seeing that they are competing with iOS and amongst themselves for customers, they have an incentive to offer the newest and best software experience. This competitive environment speeds up development and provides newer features at a faster rate than iOS does. Examples of this is how Android has had multitasking, drop-down notifications, wireless syncing, customizable wallpapers, LED camera flash, HDMI out, and homescreen folders well before the iOS did.

Even now, AOS can do over the air phone updates, has home lockscreens, full-voice control that is better than Siri.

To quote Steve Wozniak, Apple Co-Founder, "“My primary phone is the iPhone,” Woz says. “I love the beauty of it. But I wish it did all the things my Android does, I really do.”

2. My opponent mentions ease of use, but fails to realize that Android is far more customizable by the end user. With Android, once the end-user sets his phone up to the way he/she wants it, it will be a far more personal/enjoyable experience than one they are forced to use. To again quote Steve Wozniak, "“if you’re willing to do the work to understand it a little bit, well I hate to say it, but there’s more available in some ways,”

“I have a lower success rate with Siri than I do with the voice built into the Android, and that bothers me, I’ll be saying, over and over again in my car, ‘Call the Lark Creek Steak House,’ and I can’t get it done. Then I pick up my Android, say the same thing, and it’s done. Plus I get navigation. Android is way ahead on that.”

3. Battery life. Android phones have removable batteries (which allow you to swap out discharged batteries for fresh ones) and frequently allow for the use of extended batteries. iPhones are stuck with one battery and when it dies, you must wait for it to recharge. Granted, this is more a hardware feature than software one, but it is still important for length of use before dying.

4. Open Source. Many android phones are easily rooted and HTC is now allowing their phones to have the bootloader unlocked, allowing people to further adjust their phone software and put on custom ROMs like Cyanogen Mod.


My opponent says that onscreen folders are one reason iOS is better than Android, saying that AOS's application drawer uses extra steps and is inefficient. Unfortunately for my opponent, this just shows his ignorance of AOS because it had homescreen folders BEFORE iOS!

My opponent points to the fewer controls located on iPhones compared to Android. I would like to point out that fewer controls is not necessarily a simpler experience. For example, texting on an old clamshell phone is a far harder user-experience than using a slide-out keyboard, even though the slide-out keyboard introduces 26+ more buttons. Furthermore, many AOSs allow for redefining the buttons on your phone, allowing for a more customizable experience.

Debate Round No. 2


My opponent states the open source nature of AOS allows for more diversity and freedom, making it superior to iOS and makes some valid arguments and some with serious flaws.

My opponent argues that the fact the manufacturers have the ability to tweak AOS results in faster development and that this is a good thing. While I agree that it does speed up development, I argue that this is more often than not, a bad thing. The freedom that manufacturers have in tweaking AOS actually provides Android users with a generally inconsistent experience of AOS. Android users with Samsung phone will have a very different experience than someone with an HTC phone. In many cases these inconsistencies produce a negative result with users, pushing them away from AOS. iOS is consistent throughout all of Apple's mobile devices, providing its users with more peace of mind as they encounter less problems when moving from one device to another.

Another flaw of AOS's faster development is that with such rapid development phones become quickly outdated and need to be upgraded in order for users to take advantage of the newest features that are available. For example some HTC phones cannot be upgraded to the most current version of HTC Sense, restricting them from accessing features available on other HTC phones. Although this can be seen in iOS with features like Siri, it generally does not occur as frequently as it does in AOS, which allows for iOS users to enjoy new features on their device without having to upgrade as frequently.

AOS's open source nature is also a hindrance in another front as well, application development. Considering the previously mentioned definition for a mobile OS, the main objective of the OS is to provide a platform for applications to run on, giving application development an essential role in the overall success of an OS. In AOS, the diversity that was praised by my opponent is actually poses many problems for application developers. Due to the vast diversity amongst android phones, it is difficult for developers to develop applications that run properly on all Android devices which very often results in users experiencing many problems with applications not being compatible with their device. This issue puts a heavy burden on developers, as they try to resolve issues experienced only on certain devices, taking away time that can otherwise be spent developing other applications. iOS admittedly has minor drawbacks with developing applications that are backwards compatible with older versions of iOS, but no where near as much trouble as AOS developers. This provides iOS users with a better experience with applications as opposed to the woes of AOS.

My opponent also mentioned how the open source nature of AOS allows for Android phones to be easily rooted, but fails to mention the damage that can be done by doing so. Rooting effectively voids your device's warranty, and also allows the possibility of bricking your device and rendering it useless.

My opponents claim that AOS's open source nature makes it superior to iOS is wrong as I revealed above, and iOS is the better OS.




ARGUMENT: My opponent states that Android's faster development and competitive environment gives inconsistent experiences from manufacturer to manufacturer. Ex. Samsung phone users will have a different experience than HTC users.

MY RESPONSE: I fail to see how this generates bad experiences. With RIM, Palm, iOS, MSN Windows, and iOS... I would expect phone users to at least look into the features a phone's OS provides before purchasing. With so many varied experiences on AOS, a user has a greater range of choices. With iOS, they're stuck with just one. I see this greater range being a large benefit to AOS, helping make it a superior choice.

ARGUMENT: phones become outdated more quickly with new features not on older models.

MY RESPONSE: When you buy a phone (or a computer) it is with the understanding that as technology increases, your product will eventually become obsolete. When you buy a phone, how many software upgrades do you expect? My opponent says that upgrades happen LESS frequently with iOS and that it should be considered a benefit. This makes little or no sense. How does a phone that receives fewer updates get more features?!? I'd like to see how my opponent rationalizes away this argument considering how iOS5 will not be compatible with many iPhone & iPod models.

ARGUMENT: Android's Open Source is a hindrance for Developers

MY RESPONSE: This was a previous complaint of early Android OS, that the market was splintering as each service provider and phone manufacturer tweaked AOS, allowing some apps to work on some phones but not on others. Google has since worked to correct this problem. As it stands now, it is generally accepted that

  1. Android Market has more free apps than the Apple App Store
  2. AOS is now more stable across phones, allowing the majority of apps to work across phones. (i.e. they mostly fixed the problem that my opponent is talking about).
  3. It is easier for developers to put apps in the Market than in the App store, which encourages future app development

ARGUMENT: Android's easily rooting nature allows for the possiblity of bricking your phone/voiding warranty.

MY RESPONSE: As far as I know, Google has never attempted to arrest/sue developers who found root methods, like Apple did to their developers. I challenge my opponent to find 5 documented cases where a rooted user bricked their phone (excluding where they wrongly accepted an update while rooted) and their warranty was voided by their carrier. The odds are miniscule for such happening.

My Arguments

So, I have defended against my opponent's rebuttal. What about iOS? He tried to say that receiving fewer updates is a benefit... which is hardly the case. iOS has fewer features than AOS. Again, how does he reconcile that iOS5 will not be compatible with all previous iOS devices?

In a "usability battle" survey, Android beat out iOS ( with respondents choosing Android over iOS for ease of use. This refutes his earlier argument that AOS is less user friendly than iOS.

Please keep in mind that I do not think that iOS is a bad OS. I think it's great. However, I also think that the diversity, freedom, and customizability of Android makes it a superior OS.

I'd also like to point out that my opponent has not refuted my argument regarding the ability to more customize AOS by end users compared to iOS.

Debate Round No. 3



iOS is a superior OS because of its larger selection of applications.

Considering the fact that the purpose of these mobile OS's is to provide a platform for users to run applications, selection of applications is a dominant factor in determining which OS is best. iOS currently has more available applications with around 574,607 applications [1]. This number is much greater than the less than 400,000 applications currently available for AOS with 31% of those applications being classified as "low quality apps", which are useless to its users [2]. iOS's larger number of available applications provide its users with more variety, enhancing their overall experience of the OS.

On top of the fact that iOS has more available applications than AOS, iOS has a better way for its users to manage their applications and media.

iOS allows users to use Apple's iTunes software on their computers (both PC and Mac) to manage, sync, download and browse applications and other media. While AOS users can use Google's Android Market webpage to manage their applications, it does not provide users with nearly the same functionality that iTunes allows iOS users. iTunes provides a desktop application user interface, allowing for users to set preferences and settings that are unavailable on Google's webpage. These feature combined with huge selection of applications, access to the largest selection of music through iTunes and all of the other media available through iTunes provides iOS users with the best selection and variety giving them an experience AOS cannot give its users, making it the better OS.


My opponent refuted my argument that Android phones become quickly outdated by saying iOS 5 will not be compatible with many iPhone & iPod models. I do not see how this argument makes any sense considering that iOS 5 is already available and is compatible with the iPhone 3gs as well as the iPod Touch 3rg Gen [3]. The iPhone 3gs was released in June of 2009 with iOS 3 and is still able to run iOS 5 which would be released over 2 years later. This allows iOS users to take advantage of new features without having to upgrade their device as frequently as an AOS user does. I challenge my opponent to find me ONE Android phone that was released in 2009 and has received an update to run the current version of Android 4.0 ICS.

My opponent mentioned that Google has "mostly" fixed the issue of applications not working across different devices which I do not believe to be the case. By just browsing the Android Market and looking at comments, one can clearly see users complain of problems they encounter with the app as well as change logs listing bug fixes for specific devices. I wouldn't consider this an indication that the problem is "mostly" solved but rather an indication that the problem is still very much a serious issue.

My opponent also mentions that it is easier for developers to put apps in the Market and that it is a good thing, while this is actually a bad thing. This ease allows large amounts of malicious applications to be put on the Market, posing a threat to AOS users. Such applications can potentially steal user's sensitive information resulting in the risk of identity theft and fraud. This is a problem that iOS users do not have to worry so much about, as Apple ensures that all of its applications are not harmful to its users.



Braaainz forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4


It is unfortunate that my opponent forfeited the previous round, as I am sure he has much more to say. In this final round I will conclude my argument and I think it would be best for my opponent to include any additional arguments and rebuttals along with his conclusion in this final round.

To Conclude:

My Arguments
  • The User Interface (UI) of iOS is much more user friendly than Android's UI.
  • iOS is more consistent throughout Apples mobile devices.
  • iOS devices don't need to be upgraded as frequently as AOS devices.
  • iOS has a much larger selection of applications.
  • Apple provides iOS users a better way to manage their applications and media with iTunes.


Apple's iOS is better than Google' s AOS, as it provides it's users with a better experience through it's UI, selection of applications, consistency and device management.

I would like to thank my opponent for this debate and I hope he is able to complete the final round.


I apologize for forfeiting my previous round and hope that I can prove my arguments adequate in this final one.

  • It is true that iOS has more apps in their App Store than AOS.
    • However, are all those apps really needed? How many are just duplicates of other apps?
    • Keep in mind that the breadth and diversity I mentioned previously among Android phones means that there will be applications unavailable to iPhone users. For example, there is a new phone coming out that can project screen contents onto a wall or display panel, basically creating a larger computer monitor where ever you go.
    • Look at the top apps used by each. AOS typically uses more business related apps, whereas iOS is more popular as a simple game machine.
    • Android has more free apps than iOS and has a 15 minute refund policy, App store has no refund policy. What is the benefit to all the extra apps if you it costs you to trial them?
  • My opponent's argument in favor of having iTunes sync between phone and desktop is misleading. Simply put, with AOS, you don't even need a desktop. Everything can be used/updated with your phone. Google Music and other apps even allow you to sync your music via the cloud. My opponent makes it sound like using iTunes is a good thing. In reality, it ties you to your desktop. Once again, AOS provides more freedom
  • My opponent challenged me to find one android phone from 2009 that can use Android 4.0ICS. Again, this is misleading. Phones in 2009 were incapable of running the high end software that is quickly being developed for the increasingly powerful phones being built for Android. I referred to this before - technology becomes obsolete. At the pace of technology we have, how many upgrades should be expected?
  • My opponent mentions the threat of malware on android. I will not deny that android malware exists. However, it also has been found to exist on the App Store and when a concerned hacker brought a security problem to Apple's attention and they did nothing, he posted a proof-of-concept app there and it was approved. Apple later banned him from posting any further apps. With android, developers are encouraged to root out security problems. With Apple, they apparently try and hide them.

My opponent's arguments

iOS User Interface is more user friendly than AOS - FALSE. In a "usability battle" survey, Android beat out iOS ( with respondents choosing Android over iOS for ease of use. Furthermore, I pointed out that AOS is more customizable, allowing users to create the best experience for them.

iOS is more consistent throughout Apple Devices - MISLEADING. One must ask, why would this a good thing? As technology advances, wouldn't it better to have software that caters to changes rather than forcing it to maintain to an old paradigm?

iOS devices don't need to be upgraded as frequently as AOS devices - FALSE. AOS devices don't NEED to be updated. They are functional as is. Furthermore, they can be easily updated (if the user wishes & update available) via 3g, wifi, or 4g (if equipped). No computer is needed. Updates are over the air, something iPhones lacked until well later.

iOS has a much larger selection of applications - MISLEADING. iOS has more apps, but what are they? Do you really need 100 different variations of tic-tac-toe? Plus, Android market has more free apps and has a refund policy. What is the benefit to more apps available if you have to pay to trial most of them and there not being a refund policy in place if you don't like them?

My Argument
  • AOS is about freedom and diversity.
    • AOS is more customizable so users can create the experience that bests suits them.
    • The ability for developers to tweak and develop the software allows for manufacturers to experiment with features, allowing for things like microHDMI-out, projector displays, dual LEDS, front & back cameras, etc.
    • It's open source nature has allowed a community to develop to tweak out the full performance of phones as well as find security flaws. Something Apple has apparently frowned upon/tried to smother.
    • The diversity has led to a fast paced evolution of the software, causing to multitasking, drop-down notifications, wireless syncing, customizable wallpapers, LED camera flash, HDMI out, and homescreen folders to occur on AOS well before iOS.

While both operating systems are truly wonderful creations and serving many purposes... AOS offers the newest features and is ahead in technology and innovation. It is far more customizable allowing users to create the best experience for themselves.
Debate Round No. 5
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