How the operating systems looks and handles is important, but it arguably pales in comparison to the real difference maker between all these three: the apps.
Apps and app stores can make or break an operating system. You can have a gorgeous look, slick feel and, as Microsoft has found with successive Windows mobile platforms, still fail if your app situation is not up to par.
iOS, Android and Windows 10 Mobile each have their own storefront – iOS has the App Store, Android has Google Play and Windows 10 Mobile has the Windows Store.
A few years ago, Apple dominated the app space. It had the best apps, both in terms of functionality and design. It also had the ‘triple-A’ games, and overall developer support was top notch. If a new app or app update was coming, it would most likely hit iOS first.
The story has changed somewhat in recent years, but not entirely. Android now has pretty much all of the big-name apps, and new ones are typically launched more or less simultaneously with iOS (or not long after). Some even make their debut on Android, owing to Google’s more relaxed approval process.
Many triple-A games are also seeing an equal release footing between iOS and Android, though iOS still has more of an advantage here than with regular apps. That can largely be put down to the persistent issue of Android hardware and software fragmentation, which poses more of a challenge for game developers due to the added performance demands.
There’s still definitely an iOS bias here. Spotify and Instagram, for example, both tend to trial new features with their iOS apps before bringing them to Android later.
And then there’s Windows 10 Mobile. Ah, Windows 10 Mobile. It’s certainly safe to say that in the app landscape, Microsoft’s baby currently lags a distant third. Make no mistake, there are plenty of apps on Windows 10 Mobile and the number of big players offering something for the platform is growing. Spotify, Dropbox, Facebook, Twitter, Vine and Instagram are all present and correct, and that covers a lot of the apps people use on a daily basis. But such apps frequently lag behind the top two platforms when it comes to receiving updates, and they often lack fairly fundamental features. Developers seem to release an app, mention it now supports Windows 10 Mobile and then turn their attention back to iOS and Android.
Windows 10 Mobile offers hope in that it’s built on the same core as Windows 10 itself. The main advantage of this is that it’s possible to create universal apps that works in both the desktop and mobile environments. The company also put some work into making it easier to port apps from Android and iOS to Windows 10 Mobile, but the main initiative is those Universal Apps.
That’s the idea, anyway. In practice, the Windows 10 app ecosystem has gotten off to a slightly shaky start. Developers have been slow on the uptake (perhaps burned by previous Windows and Windows Phone systems), and those Windows 10 Universal Apps that have been made haven’t always been of the best quality.
But it’s still early days for Windows 10, and Microsoft seems determined to stay the course. This is supposed to be “the last version of Windows”, after all. From now on, Windows will be a service that’s constantly and incrementally improved, and there’s a clear path to ensuring a well-supported mobile ecosystem within that.
All we need now is a few more decent apps and some compelling Windows 10 Mobile hardware (a Surface Phone, maybe?), and iOS and Android might have to think about glancing back for a second.
Built-in apps also make a big difference to how the operating system functions. Many Android OEMs bake in their own apps, but Google’s suite of core apps – Gmail, Calendar, Photos, Maps – are all fantastic. They’re well integrated, slick looking and work every time. You can also grab them all, apart from Photos, if you’re running iOS.
Apple’s default apps for iOS are spartan in design terms, but they’re a good choice if you’re heavily tied into Apple’s ecosystem. Notes will sync back to your Mac, you can beam Map directions to your phone and tap out an iMessage (free messaging between iOS and OS X devices) on your desktop. Unlike on Android, you can’t set which apps are your default, which also means you’re stuck with the Apple-provided phone and messages apps for handling calls and SMS messages.
We do prefer Google’s design language over Apple’s though. It’s just got a bit more about it. It’s fresher, sleeker and not quite so bare. There’s a balance to it, where iOS feels like all of the core functionality has been stacked up in the margins.
Windows 10 Mobile’s built-in apps are generally a big improvement over the threadbare offerings of Windows Phone 8.1, particularly in terms of the Edge web browser and Outlook email app. But there’s a glaring problem when comparing it to the other two platforms: both Android and iOS have access to most of Microsoft’s key apps. What’s more, those apps are of a really high quality, often outshining the equivalent experience on Windows. We’re thinking particularly of the latest Outlook app, but there’s a case to be made for Office too.
Source : http://www.trustedreviews.com/opinions/which-mobile-operating-system-is-best#rDDQewxxXKseuygE.99