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Let’s start off by comparing the two operating systems’ interfaces.
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Uses Virtual buttons
Virtual buttons change position when switching to landscape or portrait
Virtual buttons change to dots or auto-hide as needed
Virtual buttons placement and style are app dependent
Uses physical Home button
Starting with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, navigation in Android has shifted from physical or capacitive buttons to virtual Back, Home, and Recent Apps keys. These keys are dynamic, rotating when switching orientations, turning into dots when viewing photos, or auto-hiding when watching videos.
Meanwhile, iOS 6.1 doesn’t have virtual keys on a navigation bar. Instead, it has a Back button usually appearing at the upper-left portion of menus. In addition, iOS devices such as the iPhone 5 and the iPad 4 have a navigation bar with only one button — the Home button — which performs multiple functions:
Wake the device
Go back to the main homescreen
Open search page on the homescreen
Launch volume controls and music player on lockscreen
Open App SwitcherLockscreen
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Screen elements shown (top to bottom): centered digital clock, day and date, lock icon, user icons below lock icon (for multi-user feature on tablets only)
Hour digits on clock set in boldface for greater visibility
To unlock, drag lock icon to outer ring
No app shortcuts on outer lock ring
Google Now can be launched from lockscreen by swiping dotted circle upwards
Multiple lockscreens; allows lockscreen widgets; lockscreens can be rearranged
Notification Shade and Quick Settings menu accessible from lockscreen
Camera accessible by swiping right screen edge towards left (for phones only)
Mini music player appears on the lockscreen while playing music
Screen elements shown: status bar on the top edge; time with day and date (without year) below status bar; unlock slider at bottom; Camera icon beside unlock slider (phones only), Photo Frame button beside unlock slider (tablets only)
Slide unlock slider to unlock device
Double tap on Home button brings up music control buttons; music controls at left side and volume slider at right on tablets; music controls and volume slider below music title on phones)
Drag Camera icon upwards to launch Camera app (phones only)
Photo Frame button beside unlock slider (tablets only)
Hold down Home button to activate Siri
Notification Center not accessible on lockscreen
Notifications appear on lockscreen by default; swipe app icon of notification to unlock device and jump to app
Bar for currently playing music appears in center when music is playing
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Homescreen elements (from top edge to bottom): Status Bar, non-removable Google Search, analog clock, dynamic virtual navigation buttons, Favorites tray (also called the App Dock)
Default Favorites Tray app shortcuts (on phones): Camera, Chrome, App Drawer, Messaging, and Phone
Default Favorites Tray app shortcuts/folder (on tablets): folder for Google apps, Google Chrome, Gmail, Google+, App Drawer, Google Maps, YouTube, Play Music, and Google Play Store
Tablet interface similar to phones
Tap Recent Apps virtual button to view recently used apps
Maximum of 5 homescreens only
Edge of last homescreen glows when attempting to overscroll
Widgets can be placed on homescreen
Homescreen elements (from top edge to bottom): Status Bar, square app icons on homescreen, App Dock, physical Home button
Default App Dock shortcuts (on phone): Phone, Mail, Safari, and Music
Default App Dock shortcuts (on tablet): Safari, Mail, Videos, and Music; can take up to six app shortcuts or folders
Tablet interface similar to phone
Left-most homescreen page for Search; tap Home button to instantly open Search page
Rearrange app icons or group them into folders; long tap icon to enter editing mode
Double tap Home button to access recently used apps (also known as App Switcher)
Tap and hold Home button to launch Siri
Swipe App Switcher to right to access Quick Controls
Can’t use widgets on homescreen
Number bubble appears on app icon to represent notifications
Displays ribbon on newly installed app
Status Bar, Notifications, Toggles
Both platforms employ some form of notification system for alerting users of items that need attention or that need to be acted on.
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Notification Shade shows digital clock at left; day and date (no year), Clear All Notifications button, and Quick Settings button (on phones only)
Mobile network name displayed at bottom of Notification Shade (on phones only)
Notifications grouped by app; swipe left or right to dismiss notifications
Certain notifications are actionable; e.g., missed call notification has buttons for Call Back and Message
Quick Settings accessible by swiping down from right side of Status Bar (tablets only) or swiping down with two fingers from Status Bar (phones only)
Quick Settings menu shows profile photo thumbnail, button for Brightness setting, shortcut to Settings menu, shortcut to Wi-Fi settings (shows SSID), shortcut to Data Usage screen (shows mobile network name), auto rotate button (on tablets only), shortcut to Battery status screen (shows charge in percent), toggle for Airplane Mode, toggle for Bluetooth, and shortcut for creating a bug report (if Power menu bug reports is enabled in Developer options).
Swipe top edge down to open Notification Center
Displays Weather and Stock widgets by default (on phones only)
Notifications grouped by apps; dismiss notifications by tapping X button
Can set Alert style (banners, alerts, or none), choose which notification to display, set the number of items for each app notifications (1, 5, or 10 for phones; 1, 5, 10, 20 for tablets), set unique notification tone for some apps, and view notification on lockscreen
Tap notification to view and launch the app
Facebook and Twitter widgets on the Notification menu
Text Input and Keyboard
Both Jelly Bean and iOS 6 feature simple keyboard apps that offer multilingual support, voice-to-text input, word prediction, and auto-correction. Each of them has something that makes it stand out.
Android 4.2’s keyboard has the following:
Offline voice-to-text feature
Gesture typing (works like Swype)
Personal dictionary to add your own words or jargon
A small selection of smileys
In iOS 6, you can enjoy the following:
Online voice-to-text feature
Split keyboards on tablets
Custom word shortcuts
Android 4.2 carries over most of the accessibility features from Android 4.0 and Android 4.1, and adds a few more:
TalkBack — provides voice feedback and navigating by swiping gesture with Explore by Touch feature
Magnification gestures — magnifies the screen with swiping gestures
Large text — enlarges font size
Power button ends call — uses the Power button to end calls
Auto-rotate screen — auto-rotates screen orientation
Speak passwords — speaks out your passwords
Accessibility shortcut — instantly accesses accessibility features with a button and touch combo
Text-to-speech — sets text-to-speech output
Touch & hold delay — adjusts touch and hold delay
Enhance web accessibility — installs scripts from Google to make the Web more accessible
VoiceOver – provides voice feedback and notification through gestures
Zoom – increases text size
Large Text – increases text size for Mail, Contacts, Calendars Messages, and Notes
Invert Colors – inverts colors for less eye strain while reading text
Speak Selection – text-to-speech output
Speak Auto-Text – speaks out auto-corrections and auto-capitalizations while typing
For people with hearing losses, the following options are available:
Hearing Aids — connects your device to supported hearing aids
LED Flash for Alerts (on iPhone 5) — flashes the LED flash when receiving new alerts
Mono Audio — enables mono audio and adjust sound balance between the left and right channels
And, for those who have learning or physical and motor disabilities, the following options are available:
Guided Access — keeps the device in one app and control which features are available; triple tap Home button in the app you want to use
Assistive Touch — assists you if you have difficulty touching the screen or if you need an adaptive accessoryCommunication Features
Both OSes have communication features that allow you to interact and connect with family and friends.
Backs up contacts data to Google Account
Can also sync contacts from Google+ account
Can store contact info locally on phone
Has separate tabs for Groups, Individual Contacts, and Favorites; swipe to switch tabs
Contacts can be imported, exported, or shared
Different ringtones can be assigned to different contacts
Contact page has shortcuts for dialing, composing SMS, or composing email
Tap contact number or email address to call or send an email to a contact
Backs up contacts data to iCloud
Store contacts locally on tablet and phone
On phones, contacts are merged in the Phone app
Allows importing SIM contacts
Contacts can be synced to different Apple devices via iCloud
Contact page has buttons for sending message, sharing contact, FaceTime, and Add to Favorites; tap on email address to send email and tap number to call contact
Different ringtones can be assigned to different contacts
Preset vibration patterns or personalized vibration patterns (phones only)
Facebook integrated in Contacts and Calendar events
Has separate tabs for Dialer, Call Logs, and People; swipe to switch tabs
Simple Dialer interface; tapping Dial button without entering number brings up last called number
Dialing screen shows contact info and call control buttons (e.g., hangup, loudspeaker, mute, hold, conference call)
Call Logs tab can be filtered to show all calls, only missed calls, only outgoing calls, or only incoming calls
Incoming call screen shows ring icon with shortcuts to answer, decline, or reply with message
Incoming call screen also shows Google Now shortcut (dotted circle)
Has separate tab for Favorites, Recents, Contacts, Keypad, and Voicemail; tap to switch to tabs
Simple Dialer interface
Dialing screen shows contact name and control buttons (e.g., mute, keypad, speakers, add call, FaceTime, contacts, and hang-up button
Recents tab shows history of received and missed calls; list can be filtered to show missed calls
Video call through the Internet with FaceTime
Incoming call screen shows contact info slider to answer call; swipe Phone icon upwards for more options call handling options
Displays SMS and MMS messages sent and received
Can send messages to multiple contacts
Character count indicator appears when message nears 160-character SMS limit; message split into multiple SMS if character limit is reached
Can attach photos, videos, audio, or slideshows to MMS
Messages shown inside text bubble with contact’s picture beside it
Hold down message balloon to copy, forward, lock, delete, or view details of single message
Direct Message widget for frequently messaged contacts can be placed on homescreen
Messaging widget on homescreen shows list of SMS and MMS messages
Cell Broadcast option for receiving emergency alerts (e.g., threats to life or property, child abduction emergency bulletins, etc.) and test broadcasts from the Earthquake Tsunami Warning System and the Commercial Mobile Alert System
Messaging widget for lockscreen; shows list of SMS or MMS messages on lockscreen
Can auto-delete old messages when defined limit is reached (default of 500 SMS per conversation and 50 MMS per conversation); maximum limit for either SMS or MMS is 5,000
Displays SMS and MMS messages sent and received
Can send messages to multiple contacts
Character count indicator disabled by default; can be toggled in Settings menu; character counter appears on the 28th character
Can attach Photos and videos to MMS
Messages displayed inside color-coded message balloon
Hold down message balloon to copy text
Can send SMS and MMS to iPhone, iPad, iPod, and Mac via Internet with iMessage
Message notification appears on the lockscreen and Notification Center; can change notification alert style and notification settings
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Latitude app integrated in Google Maps app, unlike in Android 4.1
New Clock widget design
Includes stopwatch and timer in Clock app
Has Digital Clock widget
Google Play Store is default source of app installations
Sideloading (i.e., installing from unknown sources) allowed but needs to be toggled
App’s APK can be installed through Android Debug Bridge
Requires Google account password before purchasing app
List of required permissions shown before installing app
App uninstallation from App Drawer (i.e., long-tap on shortcut then drag to Uninstall button)
Can clear data, clear cache, force stop, uninstall, and toggle show notification of app (via Apps section in Settings)
App and widget icons arranged in grid inside App Drawer
Separate tabs for apps and widgets in App Drawer
Cannot rearrange apps and widgets in App Drawer
Existing homescreen widgets move automatically to make way for new widgets or shortcuts
Swipe to clear apps on the Recent Apps menu
Removed Google Maps and YouTube apps
Features its very own Maps app; now includes a Report a Problem button
Features Passbook app (phone only)
App Store is primary source of apps
Doesn’t allow sideloading of apps by default
Requires user password before installing app
Asks for permission before running apps
App can be uninstalled from the homescreen by long-pressing on icon and tapping X button on icon; can also uninstall apps from the Usage option, under the General menu in Settings.
Apps arranged in grid on the homescreen
Doesn’t use widgets on homescreen
Apps can be rearranged and moved to different homescreens
Existing apps move automatically when another app icon is placed before it; placing app icon over another automatically creates folder
Apple has removed some apps and added new ones in iOS 6. For instance, Google Maps and YouTube have been removed. Apple has also added its very own Map app and the Passbook app on some devices. Meanwhile, very little has changed in Android 4.2’s bundled apps. The Clock app got a design overhaul, and the Digital Clock widget is brand-new.
Android 4.2 and iOS 6 have their own official repositories for apps: the Google Play Store for Android and the App Store for iOS. Users enjoy secure downloading with Android 4.2’s improved Permissions feature and iOS 6’s password-enabled app installation.
Installing apps is permission-based, but vary on how each OS implements it. In Android, you can view a list of all the required permissions before you install apps on your device. On Apple devices, however, you won’t find a list of permissions on the App Store. A newly installed app will only request permissions when you run it for the first time. Granting access allows the app to run.
Web Browsing and Search
FeaturesGoogle ChromeSafariMultiple tabsunlimited tabsmax 24 tabs on tablets and 8 tabs on phonesTab listyes; tab thumbnails shown as deck of cardsyes; tab thumbnails shown as scrollable tilesDismissing tabs from tab listswipe gesture or tapping on X buttontapping on X buttonPrivate Browsingincognito tabPrivate Browsing option Safari Settings menuOffline Readingpreloaded content can still be accessed even if offlinesaves pages for offline reading (on supported devices)Text scalingyesyes while in Reading ModePluginsnot supportednot supportedInverted renderingnonenoneReader modenoneyesSyncing open tabs to or from other device (e.g., desktop, another phone)yesyesAdd BookmarksyesyesSync Bookmarks from other devicesyesyesFull screen viewnoneyes on some devicesQuick controlsnonenoneMobile version of pageyes; defaultcannot be toggledDesktop version of pageyes; can be toggledcannot be toggled
Each operating system has its own way of locating items and files. Android features the integrated search tool called Google Now while iOS 6 has its own default search app.
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Integrates Google Voice search, Google Goggles, and Google’ other search services
Flashes results in flashcards
Launch Google Now from homescreen, any app screen, or lockscreen
Performs local search for Apps, Chrome, People, and Play Music files
Google Now gets data from your Google Account and automatically flashes results about weather, traffic, flight schedules, and more
Can perform voice commands such as launching apps, composing text, calling contacts, and more
Default search page located as leftmost page of homescreen
Lets you search terms via Web or Wikipedia
Voice-assisted search through Siri
Performs local search (also known as Spotlight); searches for contacts, applications, Music, Podcasts, Videos, Audiobooks, Notes, Events, Mail, Reminders, and Messages
Siri can now provide information on sports leagues, movie reviews and showtimes; shows restaurant information nearby; launch installed apps; can send tweets and update Facebook status; read items on the Notification center; purchase movie tickets via Fandango app (USA only)
Google Now can be accessed in a variety of ways:
Swiping its dedicated icon (dotted circle in the middle of bottom screen edge) on the lockscreen upwards;
Swiping the virtual Home button upwards; or
Tapping the search bar on the homescreen.
You can also enable Voice Search by saying “Google” or tapping the microphone button.
In iOS, you can access the search tool by:
Swiping to the leftmost-most homescreen page; or
Pressing the Home button while on the homescreen.
Swipe gesture on viewfinder to preview images
HDR Mode (on supported devices)
Taking photo while recording video
Pinch gestures to zoom in and out
Auto-focus and face detection
Tap and hold on viewfinder to open camera settings
5 Scene Modes and 5 White Balance presets
Time Lapse Recording
Changing image and video capture size
Volume keys as shutter buttons
Grids on the viewfinder
Mini preview of recently captured images
Photo Booth (tablets only) for instantly capturing images with preset effects
Photo and Video Gallery
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Photos stored in Gallery app
Thumbnails sortable according to album, location, time, people, or tags
Swiping image up or down deletes image in Filmstrip View
Cannot move images from one album to another
Images can be set as homescreen wallpaper
Basic image transformations (e.g., rotate and crop) can be performed within Gallery app
Photo Editor shortcut
Photos can be shared via Bluetooth, Google+, Picasa, Gmail, or NFC
Photos stored in Photos app
Tap plus icon at the upper-right corner to add new album
Long-tap photo to copy and paste to another Album
Images can be set as homescreen wallpaper
Basic image transformations (e.g Rotate, Enhance, Red-Eye, and Crop) can be performed within Photo app
Share photos via Mail, Message, Twitter, and Facebook
Enable Photo Stream to store images in iCloud
Share photos with friends with Shared Photo Stream feature
New filters and effects (punch, Vintage, B/W, Bleach, Instant, Latte, Blue, Litho, or X Process)
Photo transformation options (Straighten, Crop, Rotate, or Mirror)
Image colors and value adjustments (Autocolor, Exposure, Vignette, Contrast, Shadows, Vibrance, Sharpness, Curves, Hue, Saturation, and BW Filter)
Select slideshow transition effects (e.g., Origami [tablets], Cube, Ripple, Wipe [tablets], Wipe Across [phones], Wipe Down [phones], and Dissolve)
Play background music
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Video player integrated in Gallery app
Simple and straightforward video playback controls; includes progress bar and share button
Simple video player integrated in Photos app for playback of recorded videos; has play button, share button, trash bin button, and a progress bar with mini preview of video
Videos app for playing downloaded movies and videos; shows progress bar (without mini preview), scaling button, and playback controls
For playing music, you have the Play Music app in Android 4.2 and the Music app in iOS 6.
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Stores songs downloaded from Google Play Store
Songs can be copied from PC to phone/tablet via USB connection
Songs displayed according to playlist, artist, album, songs, genres, or recently added
Includes 5-band equalizer and equalizer presets
Create, edit, rename, and delete playlist
Can play music in background
Mini music player appears on Notification Shade and lockscreen
Stores songs downloaded from iTunes
Songs must be copied from PC to iTunes first, then synced to device for songs to be accessible in Music app
Separate tabs for Playlists, Songs, Artists, Albums, and More (Genres, Composers, Sort By Artist [tablets], and Compilations [phones])
Has equalizer presets but need to be toggled in Music section under Settings menu
Equalizer can’t be manually adjusted
Syncs songs with iTunes Match and stores them to cloud; can download songs individually from iCloud
Shake to shuffle feature allows random track playback when shaking phone (works only in Music app on phones)
Create, edit, and delete playlists
Can play music in background
Display current song clip art on lockscreen; double tap Home button to access music controls
Like videos, music in iOS 6.1 can be transferred from the PC to your Apple device via iTunes. Android provides greater flexibility in this regard by allowing you to copy files from the PC by just using a data cable.Security
Slide, Face Unlock, Pattern, PIN, and Password lockscreen types
Display owner information on the lockscreen
SIM card lock for phones
Prevents installation of apps not from Google Play Store
Built-in app verifier (malware scanner)
Improved list of Android Permissions
More control of premium SMS
Hidden Developer Options menu
Security improvements and fixes
password to unlock phone/tablet
choice between 4-digit simple passcode or long-string alphanumeric password
erase data on device after 10 failed attempts
restrict access to some device features and content
sends email confirmation if your Apple account has been used on another device
privacy menu that allows you to view which apps are accessing sensitive data
new Lost Mode feature in Find My iPhone app (locks and flashes your contact number when enabled; you can also remotely erase data and lock the device with the app in iCloud)
cannot install apps not from the iStore
kernel that is difficult to hack
reset the Advertising IdentifierVideo Review
Android 4.2iOS 6.1
Uses virtual keys for navigation
Widgets on homescreen and lockscreen
Live wallpapers on homescreen
Uses App Drawer to store apps and widgets
Displays alerts on Notification Menu;
Quick Settings for quick access to Settings options
Twitter and Facebook not integrated by default
Google Play Store
Uses Google services for saving and syncing data to various Android devices
Easy to use and flexible Camera
Doesn’t use virtual keys
Navigation buttons appear on app screens
chief navigation button is Home button
Apps are instantly accessible right from the homescreen
No homescreen or lockscreen widgets
No live wallpaper
Displays alerts on Notification Center; allows you to place Weather, Stock, Twitter, and Facebook widgets; customizable notification alerts
Twitter and Facebook integrated in the OS
Apple App Store
Sideloading not allowed
Uses Apple’s services for saving and syncing data to various Apple devices; also uses its own Maps app
Easy to use Camera
Doesn’t have options for developers
Doesn’t create unique user profiles
You're reading Android 4.2 Jelly Bean Vs Apple Ios 6.1
After a day of Google I/O announcements, I finally got my hands on a Samsung Galaxy Nexus running the Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) operating system. I found that there are a few things that Google has done right with this update—and a few issues that still need work.What It Did Right
I compared the Galaxy Nexus running Jelly Bean to my own personal Galaxy Nexus (running Ice Cream Sandwich) and noticed the difference almost immediately. There is basically zero lag when opening applications, and scrolling between different home screens is amazingly smooth. The phone’s user interface looks basically the same, but there have been little animations thrown in that give it a more polished look.Animations
In Jelly Bean, every time you open an app, you get one of these brief animations that quickly zoom in on the app you just tapped. Is it superfluous? Sure. But it’s the little details like this that make Jelly Bean more pleasant to use. There are a few other minor user interface tweaks, such as bigger, easier-to-tap icons.
The notification tray got a minor facelift, but the important change is in the notifications. You can expand certain notifications by using various two-finger gestures, allowing you to see more information at a glance.
Not all applications support this feature when I tried it out, but all of the pre-installed Google apps work. In fact, while writing this story, I received a Calendar alert telling me that I was going to be late to an event. When I went to the notification bar to see what the alert was concerning, I was able to see the name of the event (part of it anyway), the time and location, as well as a brief note describing the event.Camera App
The Camera app also gained a few new tricks, with new animations that occur every time you take a picture. Once you’ve taken a few shots, you can swipe the camera screen away to bring up your camera roll and view the images you have in your Gallery. This is much better than what we had in Ice Cream Sandwich, where you had to exit the Camera app to see photos you had previously taken.Mobile Search
Google went all out when it came to mobile search on Jelly Bean.
You can access the new Google Now page at any time by swiping upwards on the Home icon in the navigation bar. Initially your Google Now page will be very plain, showing you places nearby that you might be interested in visiting as well as the local weather (which it gets by using your phone’s GPS).
The more searches you do on your phone, the more Google Now will meet your needs.
To test this out, I searched for several things related to baseball and a sports section appeared on my Google Now page. If you don’t like a section, you can turn it off from the settings menu. It’s a very visual way of displaying basic information and it worked well–but I feel like it could do more with the information, and I hope Google Now continues to expand.Voice Search
Voice Search has a much cleaner interface. You can now do voice input when you don’t have a connection, and asking basic questions like “What’s the capitol of Spain?” will bring up a card with an answer to your query.
If you aren’t satisfied with your answer or if you want to know more, you can swipe away to the card to get to the familiar Google Search results screen. I tried asking a few questions and, after Google finally began to recognize my voice, I was able to get answers to almost everything I asked.What It Did Wrong
While many things in Jelly Bean look and work well, I encountered a few quirks.
I noticed a strange ghosting, particularly while scrolling, that wasn’t present in Ice Cream Sandwich. My guess is that this is the result of several new API’s in Jelly Bean that are meant to smooth out text and graphics (to make them use less memory), but it’s something that’s noticeable when scrolling through webpages and other text-heavy content.
Another problem I found is one that’s plagued Android for some time now: Fragmentation. With so few devices currently on Ice Cream Sandwich–and with many more phones currently waiting for their update–it seems unlikely that most phones out today (aside from the Galaxy Nexus and Nexus S) will get the Jelly Bean update.
Google IO 2012: Jelly Bean, Nexus 7, Google Glasses and Nexus Q
Google’s IO 2012 keynote has been and gone, and while the developer event as a whole isn’t over, you can certainly tell where the focus is by what made it onto the opening agenda. I’d already laid out my expectations for IO over at the Google Developers Blog, but there have been some surprises along the way too.Jelly Bean was the obvious inclusion, and Google balanced its enthusiasm about the new Android version from a technological perspective – with encrypted apps and the perfectly named “Project Butter” for smoothing out the UI – with features that will make more of a difference for end-users. The new notifications system should make a major difference to Android usability, meaning you spend less time jumping between apps, while the Google Voice Search should present an interesting challenge to Siri.
I’ll need to spend some proper time with “Google now” before I can decide whether it brings any real worth to the table. Proper understanding of context is sorely missing from the mobile device market- our handsets can do no shortage of tasks, but they still wait for us to instruct them – though there are potentially significant privacy concerns which I think Google will likely be picked up on sooner rather than later.
The Nexus 7 is a double-hitter of a device, the tablet response not only to concerns that Android developers were opting out of slate-scale app creation, but to Amazon’s strongly-selling Kindle Fire. $200 is a very competitive price, without cutting on specifications, and Jelly Bean comes with all the bells and whistles you need for a tablet OS.
Of course, OS support wasn’t what let Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich down, it was the significant absence of any meaningful tablet application support from third-party developers. The Nexus 7’s low price should help get test units into coders’ hands, at least, though it will take more than a fanfare this week to decide whether Android can catch up on larger screen content with Apple’s iPad.
As for the Nexus Q, I’ll take some more convincing on that. $299 is a lot for a device that also needs an Android phone or tablet in order to work, and Google’s awkward presentation didn’t do a particularly good job of explaining why you’d rather have a Nexus Q than, say, an Apple TV, a Sonos system, or even just a cheap DLNA streamer.
The big surprise today was Google Glasses. Sergey Brin’s “surprise” interruption of the IO presentation, sporting Project Glass himself and then summoning a daredevil army of similarly-augmented skydivers, stunt bikers, abseilers and others onto the stage was a masterstroke of entertainment, and you could feel the enthusiasm and excitement in the auditorium. That the segment ended with a pre-order promise – albeit one at a not-inconsiderable $1,500 – was a suitably outlandish high-point, though we’ll have to wait until early 2013 to actually see Google make good on those investments.
Google Glasses are a long way off. More pressing is how the Nexus 7 holds up to the Kindle Fire (and, though it may not be quite a direct competitor, the iPad) and how quickly manufacturers can get Jelly Bean out to existing devices. Google may be putting a new system of early Android update access into place to speed that process for future iterations, but it looks to have come too late for Jelly Bean updates. We’ll have more from Google IO 2012 over the rest of the week.
Make sure to check out SlashGear’s Android hub for our full Google IO 2012 coverage!
Unboxing Nexus 7 and Nexus Q:
Google has officially announced the Android 5.0 Lollipop version of Android along with the Nexus 6 and Nexus 9. We’ve been using the beta version of Android Lollipop as Android L for the past few months, so we already know most stuff about it. But Android L was a beta release and the Android 5.0 is its final release, so obviously there are some changes and added functionality with the final release. SDK or Factory images for the Android 5.0 aren’t available yet, but Google’s Android 5.0 features page offers a glimpse of some of the changes made in the final release.
Android L was a very early build for sure, and missed a lot of things even from KitKat that it almost felt a step backward at some places. But that’s okay, since, after all, it was a developers only release. We hope Google has addressed everything that felt wrong with the Android L developer preview with the final release, Android 5.0 Lollipop.
Judging by the looks of things at the Android 5.0 feature page, here are the few things that have changed from Android L developer preview release to Android 5.0 Lollipop final release.
DIALER AND PEOPLE APP
The new dialer in Android L dev preview was cool and probably the only thing in Android L that looked perfect, but it seems Google has made some changes to it in the Android 5.0 final release. As per the Material design color styles, the Cyan color scheme seems to have changed to the darker shades of Light Blue color and the Yellow highlight on tabs has changed to white. Also, the fonts are slightly smaller.
Also, when you open a contact from dialer, it doesn’t opens in a popup anymore like the KitKat and Android L release. On Android 5.0 when you select to open a contact from dialer, it directly opens in the People app, which itself is transformed drastically. The new People app now also shows recent conversations from Hangouts with the selected contact along with basic contact details.
NEW RECENTS SCREEN
Recents screen now has a fixed Google Search bar at the top on Android 5.0. And there are colorful headers too for all apps in the recents screen, but we guess this feature is app dependent since the Photos app on L preview also shows a colorful header.
NEW STATUS BAR ICONS AND SMALLER NAVIGATION BAR ICONS
You must have already noticed it in the screens above. The icons in status bar have updated to flat design and the navigation bar icons look smaller in the Android 5.0 Lollipop. However, the smaller navigation bar icons could also be the result of the higher display resolution of Nexus 6.
PRIORITY RINGING RULES
The Do not disturb feature on the Android L seems to have renamed to Priority mode with slight changes in UI and functionality now with the Android 5.0 final release. Here’s what google has to say about it:
For fewer disruptions, turn on Priority mode via your device’s volume button so only certain people and notifications get through. Or schedule recurring downtime like 10pm to 8am when only Priority notifications can get through.
These are just the few things that we were able to spot from the Android 5.0 Lollipop features page. We’re sure there will be a ton of more changes since the developer preview release was incomplete in a lot areas. The SDK for Android 5.0 Lollipop is coming on Oct. 17th so we’ll have more details on the changes made in the final release, until then let’s just sit tight.
Here’s how Apple iOS 8 HomeKit works
If you’ve been following the smart home market over the past 12-18 months, you’ll probably know that it’s flourishing. Smart thermostats like Nest, networked lighting like Philips hue, remote-controlled door locks from companies like Yale, and wireless power sockets, streaming security cameras, and more have all proliferated, at prices – and with installation processes – within the reach of the fairly tech-savvy user.
You’ll also likely have realized that smart home tech can be confusing. We’ve seen a few attempts to corral the various contenders into one, more holistic whole, from companies like Revolv and SmartThings, but for the most part it’s a riot of wireless standards, different intercommunication protocols, and multiple different apps to control each aspect of the system.
With HomeKit, Apple isn’t looking to recreate the wheel: it’s aiming to balance it. Rather than coming out with a range of its own home automation components, Apple will instead make managing and controlling third-party devices more straightforward.
In HomeKit, you can have one or more Homes, within which are established different Rooms. All of the accessories – lights, thermostats, garage doors, etc. – are logged within the Home, and which Room they’re assigned to. HomeKit also recognizes Bridges: a hub which supports the accessory protocol, with end-point accessories that don’t communicate directly with iOS.
For instance, HomeKit might link to the hub for your wireless light bulbs; each bulb shows up as a unique accessory in Apple’s list, despite the Bridge being in-between. Meanwhile, each accessory can have one or more services: one for each of the different features it supports.
So, you might have a Room called “Garage” in your Home, within which there’s an accessory called “Garage Door”. It could have two services: the motor for opening and closing the door, and the lamp that switches on and off. There can also be “hidden” services, not exposed to the user, for things like firmware updates.
All of those details are held in a common database. It’s responsible for maintaining a birds-eye view of the details of each home, each zone, and each accessory, and sharing those with all of the applications that want to tap into them.
Every Home, Room, and accessory must have a unique name, because Siri can refer to them and recognize them using natural language instructions. Apple has a long list of service types to suit the more common functions, all of which Siri understands; developers with more esoteric devices will be able to create custom services, though then Siri can’t be used to control them.
Similarly, Siri recognizes all of the Apple-defined characteristics: the parameters of the individual services. In our garage door example, for instance, the motor service could have four different characteristics: open, closed, opening, and closing.
There’s also support for grouping, both of Rooms and of services. Several Rooms can be clustered into a single Zone: “Upstairs” perhaps, or “Bedrooms”; similarly, services can be grouped and named. You might have a “Nightlight” group consisting of the different lights in your hallway, the extractor hood lamp, and others.
Both Zones and service groups are uniquely named, and can be referred to with Siri. Similarly, they’re non-exhaustive: one room can be in multiple Zones; one service can be in multiple service groups.
Finally, there are action sets and triggers. Action sets are collections of simultaneous actions, executed at the same time (though with no guarantee of the order they’ll be completed in). A “Morning” action set might turn on the lights, turn up the thermostat, open the garage door, and switch on the coffee machine, all in one fell swoop.
Action sets can be set off manually, including through Siri, or through a trigger. They execute at specific days or times, for a specific length of time.
For device manufacturers there’s a whole lot of different delegate methods to be filled in: the criteria which the accessories present to HomeKit. The rules are relatively strict, but the promised payoff is consistency and increased engagement: HomeKit’s common database contains not only the list of accessories, but their last status, so that no matter which app the user is looking at, the details of each accessory is accurate.
Similarly, if the name of a Room is changed, if a new Home or Zone is added, or if an accessory is removed, every app linked to HomeKit will show the same details.
For a first attempt, it’s an impressively comprehensive umbrella for home automation. There are some potential frustrations: for instance, actions will only work when the app is in the foreground, the exception being triggers which iOS can fire off in the background. That’s so that the smart home activity is predictable and understandable, Apple says.
Of course, the software side of it is only part of the equation. Devices and accessories need to be not only IP-connected, but HomeKit compliant. Apple will support Bluetooth LE as well as IP (like WiFi) for connections, the first using direct point-to-point links between iOS and the device, while the latter will work as long as it’s on the same subnet.
There’s bi-directional authentication and per-session encryption, too, for security, and each device needs to have an identifier of some sort, so that the user can quickly figure out which they’re setting up or controlling. So, a wireless bulb might flash to show it’s the accessory being changed, while a speaker might briefly sound a tone. There’ll be a code printed on the packaging or somewhere similar which has to be punched in during setup, too.
For the moment, though, there are no HomeKit-compliant locks, bulbs, or thermostats on the market, though Apple has a list of manufacturers it expects to add support. That list includes Honeywell, Philips, Withings, Schlage, and Cree, among others. Meanwhile, Apple is giving developers a HomeKit Accessory Simulator as part of the SDK, so that they can experiment with their apps, to see how virtual smart home devices will react to their apps.
Simple control is only the first stage, of course. Apple isn’t talking about the next step beyond HomeKit launching, but it’s not hard to imagine the automation platform integrating with something like Continuity, its proximity-based blending of different iOS and OS X devices for seamless handover. Initially that’ll pass webpages being browsed or emails being written from phone to desktop, and vice-versa, but factor in a range of smart home devices, too, and there are a huge number of potential screens and other display options Apple could tap into.
We’ll know more closer to the public launch of iOS 8, scheduled for fall 2014.
Keep up with all the WWDC 2014 news in our Apple Hub
While they share some similarities, notable details are worth differentiating. However, to stay on track, you might want to see everything you need to know about the M1 chip before proceeding.
So Apple’s M1 vs. M2 chip. How are they different? Keep reading to learn more.
Apple’s M1 and M2 by numbers
There’s no justice to the duo’s power without considering some figures and specs. The table below summarizes the notable differences between Apple’s M1 and M2 chips.M1 vs. M2 chip: Price differences
The 2023 M1-powered MacBook Air starts pricing at $999, which significantly costs less than the 2023 M2-powered MacBook Air, set to hit the market in July 2023 at a starting price of $1,199.
The M1-powered MacBooks have variants, though, with the M1 MacBook Pro selling for as high as $1,299. The 16-inch MacBook Pro with an M1 Max chip will even reduce your savings by $2,499.
Undoubtedly, the M2 generation will also have its variants, and you can only expect that the price of the highest spec will nearly cut your budget scale. In addition to the 2023 MacBook Air, Apple also features the M2 chip in the MacBook Pro (2023). The Pro version will start selling for $1,299 when released in July 2023.
As with M1 MacBooks, you can expect to see more of the M2 variants unveiled in more MacBooks as time rolls.M1 vs. M2 chip: Neural engine and secure enclave
Apple’s new M2 chip combines the power of the next-generation neural engine with the secure enclave to amass an efficiency that brings it to a 40 percent better performance than the M1. The secure enclave is typical of all Apple’s SoCs and is the primary encrypting unit in the M series. This hasn’t changed in the M2 chip either.
Most people will admit the M1’s ability to peak at 11 trillion total operations per second (TOPs) is enough to achieve complex computing tasks. However, seeing that M2 chip neural engine can process up to 15.8 trillion TOPs is quite impressive. Such a difference in performance and speed will be too obvious to go unnoticed while operating an M1 and M2-powered MacBook simultaneously.GPU cores comparison
Apple says the M2 chip graphic performance is higher than that of M1 by 25 percent and could peak as high as 35 percent. Well, not without expending more power. But that’s a significant improvement.
The GPU in the M2 chip has ten cores, which is now two more than the M1 GPU. Indeed, it’s safe to claim that M2’s GPU is superior to the M1’s. Further, as opposed to the M1’s 2.6 teraflops, the M2 chip delivers 3.6 teraflops at a texture filter rate of 111 gigatexels per second and features a transmission rate of 55 gigapixels per second. All these further bring the M2 chip to the MacBook performance forefront.M1 vs. M2 chip: CPU cores
The M1 has a 4+4 CPU core configuration. This hasn’t changed in the M2 chip, and the instruction and data caches on either configuration patch remain the same. But the M2 chip tips its high-performance cores with an expanded shared caching capacity of 16MB as opposed to the M1’s 12MB.
They both have spectacular CPU cores, averagely holding 8 CPU cores, which is higher than what most CPUs could deliver. Even a dual-core CPU is enough to handle most complex tasks.
However, while the M1 chip features 16 billion transistors, the M2 chip extends to 20 billion transistors, handing it more capability to expand to 10 cores. Undeniably, the M1 core blazes in its current form, but the M2 performs 18 percent faster at the same power consumption rate; this is an appreciable improvement.Unified memory strength
As opposed to the M1 chip, which delivers 68GBps memory bandwidth, the M2 processing unit can read and write data at the rate of 100GBps. A memory bandwidth almost 50% faster than the M1’s is worth showing off in a gadget.
Although the M2 chip has two variants currently, you can look forward to more from Apple, considering the firm’s track record of continuous unit upgrades. You’re looking at a possible M1 Ultra-like variant in the M2 chip once Apple starts rolling out M2 versions. And undoubtedly, this will offer far higher bandwidth than the M1 Ultra, which runs at 128GBps.
Although the M1 chip already delivers a 16GB unified memory capacity based on LPDDR4x, which is enough for most arduous tasks, the M2 takes this further to 24GB on an LPDDR5 memory interface. This takes latency further down significantly and reduces power consumption, a typical attribute of LPDDR5.M1 vs. M2 chip: Power consumption
Considering the specs of the GPU and CPU altogether, both the M1 and M2 chips have improved performance and speed, but, of course, not at the expense of power consumption.
Besides, maximized performance with minimal power consumption isn’t an attribute of many processing units. The M2 chip performs better than the M1 chip in many areas at the same power consumption rate.
Overall, there’s no significant difference in the power consumption rate between M1 and M2. But it’s great to see that the M2 chip maintains the M series power conservation legacy despite all the improvements.Apple’s M1 or M2 chip: Which is best for you?
Deciding what’s best for you between an M1 and M2 chip depends on some factors. However, I must mention that while the M2 chip is significantly more performant than the M1, an M1 MacBook isn’t out of the game, as it will answer the call on complex computing tasks.
No matter how fast a system is, its speed should ideally corroborate its performance. Indeed, the M1 chip has laid the blueprint for high speed and improved performance in the M series chips with its specs. The M2 chip takes it even further, considering its superiority over the M1 chip.
Idowu is an avid tech writer and a software surfer who loves covering knowledge gaps in consumer software, including anything related to iPhones. Well, when he’s not reading and learning new things, you’ll find Idowu losing gallantly on a solid chessboard or virtually on Lichess.
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