GADGETS GIZMOS GEEKS
Manil S Dodani attempts to decode who really is the king of the OS jungle. In 2015, should you bite the apple or is it time to sweeten your senses with Android’s latest Lollipop
START SMALL: FINISH UNFORGETTABLE?
Once upon a time, a middle aged man, 6 feet two inches tall, wearing a full sleeved black t-shirt, coupled with a pair of jeans and Harry Potter inspired spectacles, holding a small black remote, with a glint of nervousness in his eyes and a little jilt in his walk, stood quietly in an area bustling with people. The crowd was just like it would’ve been on any other day, some of them laughing, others talking and the rest were simply staring at a blank space. That day, in 2007, the crowd fell silent at the Moscone centre in San Francisco, when Steve Jobs said, “Today, Apple will reinvent the phone”. That day marked history in the world of technology. The first IPhone was launched. A year later, another phone, much humbler and unattractive by all means, namely the HTC Dream was launched. This phone was the first ever Android operating smartphone. But despite all the hype, Android failed to impress the smartphone community. This article attempts to referee the war between two Goliaths of the OS world – the elegant and powerful iOS and the powerful and redefined Android. The latest updates to these operating systems have been taken into account namely the iOS 8.1 and Android Lollipop 5.0.1
WHEN LOOKS ARE EVERYTHING | DESIGN
Design has become a word synonymous with Apple’s OS X, which features the principles of skeuomorphism (making things look like real world counterparts) for eg, a button on a smartphone screen appears to be ‘pressed’ when touched by the human finger. Apple has always strived to make iOS extremely minimalistic and purified in its design and has hence done way with drop shadows and detailing and embraced bold color palettes (as seen in iOS 7), it is hard to deny that iOS 8 looks classy. Featuring a Flat Design – everything looks flatter and cooler, need we say more? ‘Time saving’ design features like interactive notifications and mailbox access even when using another app to make user experience friendly and minimize effort to harness critical phone features.
Compared to the uber-cool iOS at an earlier point in time, Google, which now houses Android development, had what magicians like to call “nothing up their sleeves”. However, with the coming of 2014, Google gave the world what they refer to as ‘Material Design’. Material Design is simple and bold. Featuring a host of new features like lockscreen notifications, 3D-multitasking and high performing graphics,Lollipop took the world by storm backed by new Material design therapy and frankly, we’re loving it too.
PERFORMANCE PRESSURE | LOCK AND LOAD
‘It isn’t about the size of the dog in the fight, it’s about the size of the fight in the dog’. Apple with iOS has always followed closed system architecture, i.e. Apple controls, both the software and hardware compared to Android which harnesses third-party hardware with its open source software to build extremely powerful smartphones. But, team iOS argues that this level of Apple’s software restrictions would outperform Android devices during hard testing or at times when the phone would be forced to tap into all its processing power.
Android gives iOS a run for its money in this arena. iOS, even with multiple updates features certain bloatware in the form of stock apps, these apps cannot be uninstalled, thereby taking space in the already limited phone storage. iOS users have limited options when it comes to ringtones and wallpapers. Android is friendlier in this sense, offering almost an infinite amount of options where users can customize ringtones, wallpapers, the way information appears and much more.
IF GAMES ARE YOUR FIRST GIRLFRIENDS, READ ON: GAMING
‘This is what happens, when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object’.
This is like a Vishwanathan Anand v/s Magnus Carlsen chess game that never happened. iOS being Vishy, the tiger and Android being Magnus. Both operating systems offer tough competition, with plenty in their armour. Feedback from regular mobile gamers suggests that both systems support smooth gaming even with high-end games like Asphalt 8 and Dead Trigger running with negligible or minimal lag. Apple has introduced METAL a new game API for developers offering environment upgrades for better development whereas Android Lollipop 5.0 brings with it the OpenGL ES 3.1 which is as usual multi-platform based programming interface.
PHONE JUICE | BATTERY LIFE
‘You’re only as good as your gear’ Android users have enjoyed long battery lives even with mobile data being constantly on. Lollipop 5.0 has borrowed extensively from Motorola in introducing the new ‘battery saver mode’. Titled Project Volta, a Lollipop user now enjoys roughly 33% longer battery life. The phone allows you to activate battery saving technology at times when phone battery reaches critical levels. Most Android smartphones come with high-capacity batteries (The Google Nexus 5 features a 2300 mAh battery; pretty darn huge.)
iOS still proves to be a battery hungry software. All that glossy brightness doesn’t go easy on the battery. However, it is too early in the absence of a battery test to estimate the iOS 8.1 battery life.
Differences that are not apps, but are clones of each other on iOS and Android
* Apple Pay & Google Wallet
* Apple HealthKit & Google Fit
* Apple CarPlay & Android Auto
FREE APPS of the MONTH
TOP CROSS PLATFORM GAMES OF 2014
As 2014 comes to an end, we list some of the best multiplayer games available on the app stores of your favourite devices.
CLASH OF CLANS
One of the world’s most popular multiplayer strategy games ever. The game features an open environment where players have to forage for resources and build structures/ buy powerups with those (a la Age of Empires). Players can attack each other using their battalions of mini sized armies. Players can also join to form clans and compete with larger clans around the world. This one’s officially our design team’s favourite!
Kill or get killed is the mantra of the game. Kill your enemies, rack up points and cash and upgrade your gun to kill some more. Multiplayer shooting at its best. This is a game that will help you de-stress and unwind after a hard day’s night. Shoot away!
REAL RACING 3
Probably the game with the best graphics on a mobile platform, Real Racing 3 puts you behind the steering wheel of the world’s most powerful cars. Whether it is the Bugatti Veyron or the Mclaren F1, race with players from around the world with the fascinating multiplayer ‘ghost’ mode.
The best cross platform competitive chess game there is. It features online multiplayer gaming capability allowing you to play with your friends or just ask for a random matchup. Making Chess interactive is what this app does best!
POOL BREAK LITE
For all those pool league aficionados, this is your chance to sharpen your skills or test them with random opponents all across the world. The game also features snooker, carom, billiards etc for some off time from hardcore pool. With intense physics and geometry inspired design, this one is extremely accurate and a joy to play!
Our personal favourite. A cutesy design featuring animals, a racing game allowing for some real time matchup against opponents. Players can race with up to four players simultaneously, or add your friends to race against them!
Volume 4 Issue 7