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Old 10-08-2011, 06:45 AM
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Lightbulb Android or iPhone? It comes down to personality

The two mobile OS juggernauts, Android and iOS, are not going anywhere anytime soon. They’ve both simply gotten too large to be “killed” by anything. Now, there are some pretty strong feelings shared amongst Android and iOS users towards the “other guys”. Typically negative, almost insulting at times, the platform war is a brutal one. Is this just brand or team loyalty, though, or is this really just a fundamental difference in personalities? A recent infographic suggests that Android users might be different from iPhone users in way more ways than just their choice of smartphone.

Bloomworlds, a company primed to soon launch a family-friendly app market for Android, sought to collect as much data as possible regarding the typical Android user. After all when you have a better understanding of your users, its much easier to see how many would benefit from specific services that you offer. They reveals some really interesting information about how and when Android users are on their phone, compared to iOS users. Apparently, while iOS users are more active during the day, possibly suggesting that they are “9-5 people”, Android users are more active in the evening, after 8PM. This obviously doesn’t account for everybody, but the rest of the conclusions Bloomworlds was able to draw paint an interesting picture of the Android user.We’ve seen plenty of information in the past about the purchasing habits of users on these platforms as well, though in the past the conclusion drawn was more that it was a result of the platform, not the user.

The notion that Android users spend less in the Market then iOS users do in the App Store may just have more to do with the type of person using the platform, not the platform itself. Anecdotal though this may be, I have met far more Android users who tell me they only use free apps then I have iOS users who would say the same. However, I can also say that I have never met someone who has chosen one platform over the other based purely on the cost of apps, which is likely why this infographic contains almost no information about buying habits and instead focuses on use and utilization.

The infographic also leaves us with some unfortunate figures about how many Android users are still running Android 2.2. We keep hearing that Ice Cream Sandwich is right around the corner, and how it will solve the fragmentation issues thanks to this collaboration Google has engineered with manufacturers and carriers, but more and more the evidence shows that even if this happens, it’s only going to apply to the next generation of devices, not the current phones. While only tangentally related, if 8% of Android users switched from an iPhone, what percent do you think would switch back when they find out that their phone didn’t “make the cut” on the new fragmentation agreement?

Data pools like this infographic give a lot of insight in places that aren’t normally thought of. There’s a definite correlation between the OS and the user in terms of usage and utilization that goes beyond a simple preference. Are we looking at a use case or a personality type? Is it that Android users behave a certain way, or that people who use Android behave a certain way?

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