I recently decided that I wanted to get a new mobile device other than my Blackberry smartphone due to the following reasons
- I want to start developing on a mobile platform other than Blackberry
- I need another mobile device to satisfy my mobile entertainment needs (music, videos, games) which is an aspect that Blackberry fails woefully at partly because of the low battery life
- I need access to a plethora of apps and games which are currently not available on the Blackberry platform
I narrowed down my choices to either an Andriod or an iOS smartphone. I am naturally fascinated by the simplicity and genius of Apple devices so I had a bias early on. Since I wanted to buy a phone/mobile device that would satisfy my needs I decided not to based my decision on my emotions but on facts so I decided to do my research.
Since I am a mobile developer, I will like to develop on the platform of the device I want to buy. I first reached out to Apple’s website for iOS developers. It stated that I needed a system running on Intel processors with a Mac OS. Sadly enough my laptop runs on an Intel dual-core processor but not a Mac OS. I also needed to pay some fees for developer access or something like that. I zoomed off to google to check out other ways around developing for iOS and discovered some really interesting stuffs. I came across a plugin for Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 that allows developers to bypass Apple’s requirements and also have access to the advanced IDE features of Visual Studio. I also need to pay $40 to get this tool. This is a solution but not good enough for me because I want some thing free. I also discovered cross platform development platforms for mobile devices running on Blackberry OS, Andriod and iOS like PhoneGap, Codenameone but I didn’t want this option because I want to write core native apps.
So I checked the Google’s andriod developer website and blog which was almost an exact opposite of Apple’s. Andriod is open source and also a free to develop on without the need of a specific processor or OS. I could start developing immediately after install the Andriod development kit. I even had the option of using an Eclipse IDE. One other advantage of Andriod for developers over Apple iOS is that Andriod is developer-friendly and more publicly accessable pre-written codes are available thanks to the plethora of Andriod open source community developers. The choice of which platform to develop for became a no-brainer for me – Andriod all the way.
I also love entertainment and will love to have access to my entertainment on the go. iOS devices perform really well in this category and so also the high-end Andriod devices. This was a stalemate decision – either will solve my mobile entertainment needs.
On the availability of apps, Apple currently has over 500,000 apps in its iTunes store which is obviously more than the 300,000+ apps on the Andriod marketplace. However the Andriod marketplace is growing at an incredible and explosive pace and it’s anticipated to overtake the Apple iTunes Store by October, 2012 based on the currently growth rate. It has also been reported that there are currently more free apps in the Andriod market than in the Apple iTunes Store. Based on these reports, I think Andriod is the mobile device OS of the future and I decided to choose it over Apple iOS.
In a nutshell, Andriod is expected to control the larger share of the future mobile OS and based on this only, I have decided to get an Andriod device. I haven’t decided on whether to get an Andriod tab or phone though and I am also aware that Andriod is more optimized for phones than tabs.