Apple announced its latest operating system, the iOS 14 last month with many new features and improvements that were long-awaited by iOS users. While some of these ‘newly introduced’ features on iOS already existed on Google’s previous and current Android operating systems, it’s upcoming Android 11 is focused on fine-tuning notifications, improved privacy and permission management, better 5G support and visual decluttering among others. Unlike iOS 14, it does not bring any major design or UI changes.
It may take a bit longer for these OSes to be available on your devices as they launch later this year but beta versions of both, iOS 14 and Android 11 are rolled out and can be downloaded on compatible devices. Although they are still in the early stages of developments and certain features will be updated and changed with subsequent builds, it is worth comparing the two. Here’s a lowdown of their key features:
Widgets have been a key differentiation feature between the Android and iOS for more than a decade. Introduction of Widgets is definitely the highlight feature of iOS this year. Users can now view information from an app without having to open the app by adding or stacking widgets on their home screen.
Widgets on Android have been a staple but certainly have fallen out of fashion as their development has stagnated over time. With Apple introducing Widgets, Google is more likely to focus on this area and bring new improvements.
Apple has introduced new and improved privacy features with the iOS 14. For the first time, iOS users will be notified when an app is using their iPhone’s camera or microphone and an indicator will light up in the status bar notifying this activity.
Apple has also changed its App Store policy, now apps will have to take permission from users before tracking them across other apps and websites. Users will be able to control which app can track them and to what extent by choosing between “Allow Tracking” or “Ask App Not To Track”
Google too has introduced some key privacy changes in Android 11 this time. Android 11 now allows users to grant one-time permission to access location, camera and microphone rather than always-on access.
In this update, Google has included the scooped storage feature which was seen in iOS 13 too. Scooped storage allows apps to access limited media or storage and not the smartphone’s entire storage.
This never seen before feature on iOS allows users to use a lite version of apps without having to actually download it. App clips use not more than 10MB of space on the smartphone to perform tasks like ordering food, renting an Uber, etc.
This feature is available on Android since 2017 and is known as Google Play Instant which even allows users to play games without having to download an app provided that the game size must be no more than 15MB.
Until iOS 13, Apps were always in grids which had to be swiped page by page. In the latest version of its operating system, Apple has introduced an App Library which is basically an App Drawer seen in Android devices where you can house all those apps that you don’t want on your home screen and not used so often.
App Library also automatically organizes apps in separate folders based on their genre like social, productivity, news, etc
Android 11 has an App Suggestions feature, which will suggest to users what their main dock apps – the row of apps that stay permanently sited at the bottom of the home screen – should be.
Apple has improved messaging experience with the iOS 14. It now enjoys features similar to those available on popular messaging apps like WhatsApp and Telegram. Users can pin group chats at the top of their message and customize by setting a group photo.
Android 11 has added Chat bubbles to Android messages, a feature that’s already seen on the Facebook Messenger app.
When users receive a message, the picture of the sender will appear in a bubble on the home screen. Users can reply to the message by tapping on the bubble.
The home screen on iOS 14 devices will look completely different as Apple has reinvented the home screen with the introduction of widgets.
Android 11’s home screen is pretty much unchanged aside from the new dock which shows some recent and suggested apps you might want to use at that exact time.
Also Read: Apple Unveils iOS 14
Also Read: How to Install Android 11 on your Smartphone