iPhone vs. Android App Design: What’s the Difference?
Screen Sizes are Different
You’ll need to support multiple screens for both platforms, and none of Apple’s screen sizes match Android’s. In total, you’ll need to design for eight different screens, ranging from the smallest Android phone to the iPad2 (768x1024 pt). It’s worth noting that, while Android measures using density-independent pixels, iOS measurers using pixels. To understand the conversion, 1dp= 1px @ 1x [160dpi]. Newer versions of the iPhone also use Retina display.
The Back Button
On Android, going back involves touching a left pointing arrow at the top of the TouchScreen or on the device. iPhones, however, have a back button in their navigation bar.
Anytime you design a header for an Android app, the name of the app links to the “Home” function on Android. There is no similar concept for iOS.
With Android, when users want to switch between tabs, they go to the top of the screen. For iOS, it’s more common for apps to use a bottom tab bar. Google’s own design page recommends avoiding bottom tab bars for Android in order to maintain a consistent experience for users across different platform apps.
Many developers have designed an app for iPhones and then made small tweaks to bring their app to Android, only to realize that there are major issues with having their app accepted under Android standards. Both Android and iOS have UI Guidelines you should familiarize yourself with. Although Apple has traditionally been more strict about which apps they allow in their play store, Google is likely going to follow suit soon. In 2014 there were 66 million iPhone users and 75 million Android users in the U.S., and these numbers will continue to grow over the coming years. Designing for both platforms, and keeping the user experience in mind, is key for having a successful app. Check out our list of top mobile app design firms to get you started.
Need help selecting a company?
Based on your budget, timeline, and specifications we can help you build a shortlist of companies that perfectly matches your project needs. Schedule a free consultation with an analyst.