When we are talking about Windows tablets and Android tablets, it is the operating system that is taking predominance in our judgment. But as consumers we should understand that such an operating system is not actually a singular feature, but a wealth of features packed into one component. Well, in regard to this, Google's venerable Android OS has been there over the years, ruling the roost with a myriad of tablet systems. While, Microsoft's Windows (8) is supposed to be the new kid on the block, ready to challenge the neighborhood's old bully. But beyond the big names, where do these systems actually differ? Read on, to find out more:
When it comes to user interface, Windows 8 will showcase a markedly unique design based on Metro tiles. The vivacious home screen will be composed such colorful 'live' tiles, which automatically gets updated over time (like e-mails received and weather change). This fascinating dynamic attribute along with a freshly conceived screen certainly makes the Windows a worthy competitor.
On the other hand, the Android has gone through an evolutionary process to come to its current version of Ice Cream Sandwich. This means, the UI has got totally revamped to include more rich widgets, a wholly improved application network and the novel holographic interface.
Now, if we want to talk about user preference, it would be very hard to choose among these two. But, logically speaking, the Windows does have the potential to attract newer consumers, because of its fresh and vibrant UI. While, Android (and possibly experienced) users will actually look forward to ICS, as their proven OS savior.
Operating System Support
Windows 8 is already touted to support both ARM microprocessor along with x86 processors like Intel and AMD. This means, Windows 8 will be a truly collective OS that can be run on devices ranging from tablets to personal computers. This means a much better handling capacity and applications based compatibility is offered to the users, as the same Metro furnished UI would function in PCs, laptops and tablets.
When Android 4.0 (aka ICS) came into the scheme of things, critics and consumers both lauded it compatibility with devices such as smartphones and tablets. But from unbiased perspective, iOS had been doing that for years. So, all in all, the ICS may be a better step for Google, but Windows 8 would have already notched it up to a higher level by catering to PCs and laptops.
App Availability & Quality
It really comes as no surprise that Android has a comprehensive app store, because of its long term market presence. Now, as consumers we have known that even having app stores is not enough. It is all about the full interactive package that these software components (better known as apps) allude to. In this regard, both Android and iOS have smartly made use such apps, thus giving a richer experience as an OS.
Coming to Windows, this is where Microsoft will have to face an uphill struggle. Firstly, because as a new OS, it may take some time to interest potential developers. But more importantly, the whole Windows experience is tilted towards a touchscreen system. So, the question still remains about how many non-touchscreen PCs can benefit from the touchscreen compatible apps.
To guarantee commercial success in the cutthroat market of tablets, the companies are looking forth to contrive devices with refined features (instead of more features), which come within a credible pricing structure. In this regard, Android has showcased its proficiency by the success of tablets such as the $199 Kindle Fire.
As for Windows 8, we cannot be too sure of the cost element, because the OS has still not made its commercial debut. But if we have to believe the rumors, a $200 Windows tablet can certainly be made plausible by the end of 2012.
This is perhaps the most significant difference between our two operating systems, going by the current scenario. Android has been a tried and tested OS, which serves to a plethora of mobile devices, thus having a heavy market presence. While, Microsoft will have to try harder to capture those consumer segments, by not only competing with Android, but also with iOS.
On the other hand, if we take the future under consideration, the two operating systems paradoxically face the same predicament. Android has seriously made its mark in the smartphone section, but tablets are still stuttering with Honeycomb (which ICS looks forth to resolve). The Windows 8 will also have a tough time to be envisaged as a tablet system; given the OS's personal computer related pedigree.
From a consumer's perspective, both Android and Windows are advanced systems, which can cater to a wealth of user oriented features. But as major advantages go, Android has the potent experience and market loyalty in the realm of mobile devices. While, Windows can boast of an arguably better interface to entice the newer customers of the electronic field.