Android or IOS? Oh Damn It All- I’ll Just Have Both!

I have recently been faced with the terrible dilemma of buying a new mobile phone. This unexpected event was thrust upon me after falling over my daughter’s dog (i’m actually the grandmother) when we were out for a walk. We were literally on the downhill run or the home stretch when she crossed in front of me while I was checking my phone for new tweets. I went in the air at first, however I had time to think “Oh no this isn’t good” and then I was sliding on the bitumen-hands first, then elbows and finally knees. Why am I describing this in detail? Well I think the memory is still very vivid and it was this incident that put me in the position of needing a new mobile device.

The choice, as far as I can gauge in today’s market, is primarily between 2 players- Samsung, Galaxy s5, and Apple, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Of course there are others, but that’s anther story. The issue here is not about which company has the best feature packed phone or how many mega pixels the camera sports but what does it signify to purchase a phone based around a particular operating system. Users may know that the Galaxy S5 is built on an Android platform and the iPhone 6 on the IOS platform however, that is probably as much as they do know or want to know. Should users be more proactive with their buying power and base their decision on the perceived contribution to society via technological development? Lets see-benefit to society, or fantastic, super cool new phone with a 16 megapixel camera? On what should users base their final decision? Perhaps users should be observing the way in which each platform is managed and developed .

Is it OK that Apple keep the IOS platform ‘locked up’, allowing only rigorously pre-approved developers to build Apple apps? Does this policy inhibit the natural flow of creativity? The ‘coolest’ way to manage the development of platforms and the interaction by users can be found in The Cathedral and the Bazaar. Written in 2001, by Eric Raymond, he details the development of the open source Linux platform by Linus Torvald and the rest of the Linux community which is described as:

a great babbling bazaar of differing agendas and approaches (aptly symbolized by the Linux archive sites, who’d take submissions from anyone) out of which a coherent and stable system could seemingly emerge only by a succession of miracles.

It’s the same mob that preached the ‘release early, release often’ dictum with anything in the ‘not quite ready state’ classified as a Beta version. Gmail began its life as a Beta release. Another point that is make in the essay is that Torvalds reused and remixed code borrowed from other sources. Dictum #2:

Good programmers know what to write. Great ones know what to rewrite (and reuse).

In the spirit of the Linux platform, I am not going to finish this blog. I am putting it out there just as is. Perhaps it would benefit from a conclusion or not. The choice is yours!

PS. To finish my original story- I couldn’t make a choice between Samsung and Apple- so I got one of each.

PPS. When I was out for a walk earlier today, I tripped on an invisible banana skin and slammed my new Galaxy into the pavement. Oh Well C’est La Vie!

AndroidAvatar growing roots
Have you ever rooted an Android?


Henneke, C 2013, Android vs iOS: Comparing the Development Process of the GQueues Mobile Aoos, GQueus Blog, 29 July, viewed 12 September,


Raymond, E. (2001) The Cathedral and the Bazaar [pp.1-31], viewed 10 September 2013,



2 thoughts on “Android or IOS? Oh Damn It All- I’ll Just Have Both!

  1. Current HTCer here. ive had four samsungs before that and they were alright, but eventually all died (as im sure they’re meant to).
    There are so many options of what i can do with my phone, most of which are completely free – i find so amazing. Speedo was out on my car (due to different size tires) downloaded a free gps speedo (commercial ones are about $150 ~ $200). Guitar needed tuning, downloaded a free tuner (commercial ones $30 ~ $200). Downloaded a Nintendo 64 emulator so I can play Zelda on my phone (real N64: Priceless)

    People who want an iPhone for its hardware, looks and feel will jailbreak it so they can have the freedom of an android anyway. So why do we fight so much?

  2. Enjoyable read! It’s always good to have a personal story intertwined with the concept. I think that today’s society is too caught up with getting the most they can with their money (something that looks pretty, easy to use but has all necessary functions). Not all of us are computer wizzes and use phones because of their applications and know all the ins and outs. Some just want the basic functions such as messaging, calling and internet. It was a good point when you asked the question if by Apple only allowing pre-approved developers to build apps, does this stop the natural flow of creativity? I believe that perhaps it does but the team that built and founded Apple and the IOS system have made it so only their creatives can keep building on it, and why shouldn’t they if they own it. It’s a very controversial topic! Thanks

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