Comparison of the Android and iOS UI

Have you ever used an Android device and iPhone side by side? If you compare the same app that’s been ported to both platforms, you should notice some differences.

There are plenty of cross-platform apps that now exist on the Android OS and iOS. Larger brands now offer their apps on multiple mobile operating systems, but the user experience usually ranges for the same app from platform to platform.

Android Gripes has posted a brief comparison of some popular iOS and Android apps

Take a look at the Meebo IM clients for the Android and the iPhone:

It’s pretty obvious that there are some stark differences between the design and user experience in both versions of the Meebo app. Android Gripes favors the iPhone version,

“The one on Android pretty much looks like a programming class project. The contact items are too narrow and thus hard to click. They also look bad. The conversation interface is like a geeky IRC client. Those smiley icons are disproportionately small. On the other hand, the interface on iPhone looks much much more polished.”

While it’s true that the Android app lacks the polish of its iOS counterpart, that’s not to say that the Android app is not credible. It’s interesting to see how extremely different the two apps are in color and design. Android apps usually seem to have harsher edges, while iOS apps normally have curved interface designs.

The official Facebook app is a primary example of how Android and iOS user interface differs:

Again, Android Gripes takes the iPhone’s side,

“The same thing here. In the Android interface, icons are not properly aligned. The extra space makes the view look very awkward.”

Android Gripes also compares the Speedtest app on Android and iOS. It’s clear that the iPhone version looks much prettier, and the layout of the Android app seems a little odd.

These few comparisons are not to say that there are not fantastically well done apps on the Android Market, but it’s interesting to notice the difference in design and interface quality when generally comparing the iOS and Android versions of popular apps.

How do you think Android and iOS apps stack up against each other? Have you tried the same app on both platforms? If so, what did you notice? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

[Android Gripes via TiPB]