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"Android is ahead of the iPhone now," says Google’s Eric Schmidt

Posted: , by Victor H.

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In the battle for the smartphone king currently there are only two big players - Android and the iPhone with iOS, but it was hard for Google’s Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt to announce one of the two a clear winner of the race.

Schmidt, however, who went on stage today at the LeWeb conference, did say that “Android is ahead of the iPhone now.”

Speaking in front of a techie audience reportedly mostly equipped with Apple gear, that statement was greeted mostly with silence. The Google chairman explained what was his basis for such a conclusion with the following words: “Unit volume, Ice Cream Sandwich, the price is lower, there are more vendors."

The platform however is still struggling to win the hearts of developers. Many apps are still iOS-only, while others get their Android versions updated later than the iOS ones and only a fraction of the apps are made exclusively for the platform. With Ice Cream Sandwich, Schmidt expects that this will change soon:

 "My prediction is that six months from now you'll say the opposite," he said.

Interestingly, Schmidt also shared how Google has looked at the platform in the past and what has changed now. Initially, it seems that the mobile platform was seen as one similar to computers, while only later the company realized how important the stress on mobile is.

"We started off thinking phones were computers. We forgot that they were about communication," Schmidt concluded.

Is Android really ahead of iOS? What do you think and why?

source: CNET

90 Comments
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posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:18 19

1. seanjohnusa91 (Posts: 30; Member since: 01 Nov 2011)


Comments should be disabled from this post. With that said, and without further ado, let the wars begin!!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:37

29. c1985 (Posts: 10; Member since: 21 Oct 2011)


The real question is what six 'omens' are needed before Android app development takes the lead.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 13:53 3

52. The_Miz (Posts: 1496; Member since: 06 Apr 2011)


Lol, Android will NEVER be ahead.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 14:08 11

53. remixfa (Posts: 13909; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


definitely not in features, sales, hardware, and soon to be.. apps..

oh wait.. thats exactly what they ARE ahead in. your so silly mizzy.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:20 18

2. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


I think Android COULD be "ahead" of iOS in the future... but at this point I believe they are different enough that they aren't even in the same race.

For me, Android has been ahead of iOS since the D1... but everyone is different.

I think of it like I think of cars. I would never drive an automatic. I have driven a stick shift since I was sixteen and will continue to do so until they stop making them (which I hope never happens). I like the control. When i'm on the highway and I want to pass someone, I don't want to press the gas pedal and wait for the car to realize I want to accelerate and downshift. I want to throw that bitch in third and gas it!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:49 2

17. bolaG (Posts: 468; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)


If your down shifting to third then I know you have a 4 banger lol. I'm the same haha. Stick all the way.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:03 1

21. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


Actually the 5cyl Jetta but close enough!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 21:26

81. JC557 (Posts: 1104; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


Ahh, I use those to race rally from time to time (rented from a racing school) only because I haven't enough points to progress to another class. For many stages it's the only power I need.

Back on topic, all the apps I need are already on Android Market. Many apps are repeats or just trivial that I don't find myself longing for them on the Android platform.

posted on 08 Dec 2011, 02:46

85. TheSeph (Posts: 8; Member since: 02 Dec 2011)


I love seeing people argue over brands and equipment. "My Corvette Z-R1 is better than your Nissan GT-R!!!!". "My LG Blu-Ray player is sooo much better than your Samsung Blu-Ray player!!!". Laughable. What's funny is that most people who trash other platforms have never even owned or used the other platform for a single day.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 14:10

54. remixfa (Posts: 13909; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


lol. ive never owned an automatic in my life. even had a stick shift Xterra (that was bad-ass :) ) Funny, now that I'm looking at a sports car for a graduation present to myself next year, im thinking about getting an automatic. I think its a "getting old" thing.. lol. I'll probably get a stick though.. lol

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 15:01

56. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


When I bought my Jetta I test drove an R32 with paddle shifting. I made it a 1/4 mile down the street and turned around, no way!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 15:49

62. remixfa (Posts: 13909; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


you didnt like paddle shifters? Ive been wanting to try them... all F1 and stuff.. lol

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 16:56

66. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


I need a clutch. I felt like I was playing Forza. It was fun for 5 seconds but you just don't have the same control obviously.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:24 15

3. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


i think they are far ahead in functionality, multitasking, good apps, everything, processors, OS everything absolutely everything

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:29 5

5. iwebdroidberry7 (Posts: 230; Member since: 17 Jan 2011)


Blind sheep is blind, did you really say better processors, and apps? I mean I can understand mostly everything else but really?

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:26 14

25. andro. (Posts: 1955; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


This comment could have been made by schmitt in 2010 and even back then it would have been true

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:44 9

32. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


yes i said better processors and apps mostly cause the processors would handle everything on ios so much better than the 800mhz dual core they use in iphone does. and yes the apps are better because they are rapidly approaching ios in amount and quality of apps can your POS iphone have at least 50 apps open? no because there is no multitasking and only 512mb of RAM my samsung galaxy s2 has more power than your s*!tty iphone could ever imagine. the iphone is nothing more than a glorified app launcher and that is all there is to it

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 12:08 2

35. 1701nino (unregistered)


What,hahahahaha your s**tty plastickey phone will never be better than my super qualitty iphone.Don't you know its not all in Mhz.Have you ever heard about the Mhz myth,and by the way check the stats iphone beats the scmalaxy s in almost every test. Punk;)

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 12:28 3

38. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


have you ever even used the galaxy s2? and will plastic shatter when it hits the ground like the iphone? no it wont because its bendable and much more shock absorbent. look up galaxys2 vs iphone4s drop test galaxy wins in the durability department. the iphone is smoother for one reason IT DOES NOT MULTITASK. it is an app launcher that is it asshole

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 21:32 1

82. JC557 (Posts: 1104; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


The international version of the GS2 (played with at an Engadget meet) was like butter and I would hope that the Verizon Nexus would be the same in that respect.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 12:37 2

39. SleepingOz (unregistered)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elKxgsrJFhw
super quality iphone FTW!!!!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 13:09 1

43. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


i have better things to do with my time then argue with idiots who are to stubborn to acknowledge that the iphone is being over run by the galaxy line slowly but surely

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 15:37 2

60. SleepingOz (unregistered)


It was sarcasm actually. Have you even seen the video?

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 15:37

61. kemjus (Posts: 32; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


actually Android is over running iOS... to be factual. Currently iOS is in the lead although Androids growth is increasing exponentially (which iOS is not...) so in time Android will be number 1.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 16:14 1

64. andro. (Posts: 1955; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


enjoy your iphone as new faults are being reported by the week and your so highly boasted glass screen breaks if you drop it from anywhere above ankle height! Make sure you have insurance to cover this and also cover you if you are in a 24 month contract as apple iphones from my mobile retail years of experience have thought me somehow have the knack of breaking,freezing or generally going faulty after the 12 month warranty has expired.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 17:35 1

69. deadma44 (Posts: 18; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


Yea, I've heard of the Mhz myth but not the Ghz myth, which is what were talking about with the current incarnations of Android. As far as quality goes, I doubt your iPhone could take some of the lumps my super light and plasticky, original Epic has taken. I do have a decent case on it but I can remember three separate occasions when it went down hard on concrete. Expelling the battery at least two of those times. It's never flinched. The recent Gingerbread update to it sends it blowing by an iPhone in speed, screen resolution and, let's not forget, the best physical keyboard ever made. I'm not getting rid of it anytime soon and I've played with a few dual-core Android models.

posted on 08 Dec 2011, 07:15 1

86. kshell1 (Posts: 1143; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


that is unless samsung releases an upgraded OG epic with a dual core processor but same look :D n upgraded camera lol my epic 4g touch would be on ebay instantly :)

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:26 5

4. jubbing (Posts: 150; Member since: 20 Aug 2008)


The problem is there are way too many crap Android phones out there, much more than the Premium handsets that are awesome (like the Galaxy S2, Galaxy Nexus etc). Until Android get's their overall phone value up (ie stop building really cheap crap phones, and focus and making the awesome phones cheaper) then they'll trully be ahead of Apple.

Frankly, currently Android is ugly, but with Ice Cream Sandwich, it looks amazing, so it's good to see visual development there in looks and guts. Android needs more Quality over quantity.

Is it better than Apple overall now? Hard to tell, but based on performance and overall phones probably not yet, maybe 2012 though.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:30 2

6. ghost__uwi (Posts: 175; Member since: 28 Nov 2011)


agreed i have the s2 and the iphone the apps on iphone are definitely better. However when i want to do some custom s**t go to the s2. I think its up to who wants what from a phone.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:35 4

9. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


well i think not everyone can afford those high end monsters. thats why android is different than everything out there and thats why its open sourced so everyone can taste a piece of the pie.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:58 10

19. SlimSoulja86 (Posts: 642; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


The thing about Android is that, it's not as strict as Apple, where they only design things for rich people, it's a platform for everyone. Not everyone can afford an iPhone, and these "crappy cheap" Android phone are for people won't cant afford expensive phones. I think the problem is that when we compare iOS with Android, we end up leaving the OS part and turn to focus on the Apps that are available for "Devices" and end up turning iOS into iPhone, and turn to judge Android because of some low end tech phones and complitely forget about reviewing the OS not the devices the OS uses. I know iOS stands for iPhone Operating System [but doesn't mean we always have to turn from OS to the device, and yes the OS is useless on it's own, but when you compare an OS, that the best Device the OS use, not the one you know is crappy for you to prove your subjective thoughts, always when people compare Android to iOS, they always use the latest iPhone, never compare the iOS on iPhone 3G, but use iPhone 4S] my point bn, we can never get to the point where we say Android is better than iOS or iOS is better than Android. Both OS' are different and cater for different people, yes most tech review journalists favour iOS bcos they personally love Apple devices. Truth be told, each is different and does cater to different ppl. So in my opinion they both in the different race and compering them will never benefit us. Apple fans will say iOS is better while Android fans will say Android is better, the best OS is based on the individuals who uses the OS and it benefits them

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:56 2

34. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


well said. couldn`t say better.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 18:46

74. Johnny_Mnemonic (Posts: 240; Member since: 05 Oct 2011)


With iphone there is no freedom , your stuck with the same icons for more than a decade so so borring : (

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:35

27. EclipseGSX (Posts: 1590; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


you do realize that Android isnt making these "crap phones" other manufacturers are because its open source

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:43 6

31. Fallout09 (Posts: 417; Member since: 17 Oct 2011)


Android is ugly and iOS is not? And how is every iphone user having the same boring app icons all neatly lined up in a rows is not ugly? Andriods have custom backgrounds that I can choose to cover up or not. Use live active wall papers or not. Add widgets any where I want to place them or not.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 14:18

55. casbah70 (Posts: 16; Member since: 21 Jun 2011)


What you consider quality, many consider fluff and don't want to pay extra for it. I think it is better to be able to offer a lower cost phone than to expect everyone to pay Apple-ish prices.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 15:13

58. downphoenix (Posts: 2329; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)


That's not really true. Some app developers still make Iphone apps to work on the Iphone 2G and 3G, both of which are weaker than virtually all Android phones (Except the G1 maybe, and that I imagine is still more powerful) so I dont think this is the case. They do have to make apps for a lot more skus, but its app developer laziness and/or apple fanboyness that causes many developers not to go to android, not handset fragmentation. There are a lot of low end androids, yes, but the high ends are the biggest sellers, so they still have a sizeable market. Its just that devs are lazy, dont like the fact that Google allows refunds (Even though its only for 15 minutes) or are apple fanboys.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:30 2

7. tacohunter (Posts: 408; Member since: 06 Nov 2011)


Well Steve Wozniak said something like android smartphones will most likely be the Number 1 used smartphone in the near future. But he also hopes that android would never take over the iPad as best tablet. He received a Galaxy nexus from google but he also owns an iPhone 4s. He loves technology as we all do.

whatever google's chairman says: with ICS they're not ahead of ios. I've watched ICS (google announcement of ICS, and other vids), and I know they're ahead in some points but also they're behind on some points.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:32 6

8. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


yes. it is ahead of ios in many ways. iphone is a very good device but if i think about os then green robot is ahead of everyone and its not slowing down anytime soon. the rate android is evolving at is mind blowing. in just no time it has evolved from nothing to almost everything. go google go

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:37 9

10. bloodline (Posts: 691; Member since: 01 Dec 2011)


android has been ahead for sometime IMO.

Its such a frustrating debate, ios and android both offer different things and its difficult to compare both and give a definitive winner.

As someone who has the galaxy Nexus ICS and the iphone 4s, i gotta say the galaxy nexus/ICS is much better than the 4s IMO.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:38 5

11. HBK24 (Posts: 2; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


Specs wise current androids is ahead of iPhone, but the OS itself speaks for the people... Reality... Only an iPhone can create lines and queued for hours just to have one... That makes the difference...
In order for iOS to switch to Android:

1. Seamless and smooth UI
2. Premium Hardware Feel( See how beautiful iPhone 4 )
3. Productive and efficient Applications (ex. Numbers, Pages and Keynote)

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 12:18 2

36. networkdood (Posts: 6267; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


For premium - see DROID RAZR

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 13:06 1

41. antifanboy (banned) (Posts: 67; Member since: 06 Dec 2011)


Still has laggy and buggy android OS

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 13:22 3

45. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


Now I understand your username. This whole time I thought it was anti fanboy but now I realize it stands for A Not Too Intelligent fanboy.

It all makes sense!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 13:27

48. hepresearch (unregistered)


If you do not like having to live with the lagging, then you are free to declare yourself an iFan and live (on your knees...) without the lags or bugs. For the Fandroids who want to, constructively, help solve the lagging problem, there is always CyanogenMod... it requires some work.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:39 4

12. hepresearch (unregistered)


In some ways, Android is ahead of iOS. In other ways, iOS is ahead of Android. In yet other ways, they are not even competing with each other at all. It totally depends on what you are trying to do with your phone... that will determine which one is best for YOU!

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:39

13. terabyteRouser (Posts: 420; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


I can't believe they didn't realize that phones were communications devices first and computers second up front.

I got that sense when I used Droid 1. I was like it is so effing difficult to make a effing phone call.

However on the HTC the Phone button was front and center.

Glad to see they are seeing reaching that realization.

Based on this fact, the most successful apps on mobile will always be those that enhance communicative abilities. (Freebie)

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:42

14. terabyteRouser (Posts: 420; Member since: 18 Oct 2011)


Btw, omens is a typo. It should be months.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:44 2

15. shamataa (Posts: 202; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


they are right now and forever

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:49 7

16. tacohunter (Posts: 408; Member since: 06 Nov 2011)


It's basically because android is al about customazation. And that's what android is you can customise almost everything you want. There are no limits on android, and that's were they're ahead of ios and wp. Come on, on wp you got the lowest customise settings ever.

But if apple allows a lvl of customizing things on android lvl then there will be no other choice then to say that ios is best OS. For now ios is great, you can customise it to certain lvls. i hope apple will allow more widgets and stuff in the near future. And live action bacground. There are apps to customise.

But android really needs the variety of customizing. there is samsung, htc, motorola, LG, ZTE, sony ericson,...Android needs this it would be a shame if a htc looked exact the same as a samsung.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 10:56 9

18. willywill_evo (Posts: 162; Member since: 05 Jan 2011)


iphone owner are wash out, its crazy half of them dont know what they are buying..they buy it because they see it as fashion or style

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:06 6

22. SlimSoulja86 (Posts: 642; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


I couldnt agree with you more, yet some people prefer simplicity while [iPhone] other want to play around with their phone and make sure their phones reflect their attitude and personality [Android Devices]. While people on iOS, just prefer the simplicity and don't mind the limitations [which I personally I hate these limitations] and don't mind having te same phone as their friends and rivals.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:03 3

20. tech-blast (Posts: 16; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


I am seeing the future of Iphone will be like blackberry. Slow update/change with current trend and better marketing . B'berry always advertise as best corporate phone and since iphone,android and windows mobile also infiltrate on the corporate sector it has no where to go.Eventually Iphone will will symbolize as a fashion icon.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:08 1

23. ngo2dd (Posts: 781; Member since: 08 Jul 2011)


The biggest reason that Developer are developing for iOS is because it is easier. iOS hardware are more standardize than that of android. They have less hardware that is needed to take in account for and software.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:10 5

24. SlimSoulja86 (Posts: 642; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


I bet you more than a quarter of iPhone uses have less than 20 downloaded Apps on their phone[they just bought the phone as a fashion icon ruther what it can do] and they mostly use their iPhone for calls, messaging, music and pictures. while more apps can be frustrating especially when you're looking for a certain app but you don't know its name[if you want an app than can do a certain activity] #JustMyOpinion

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:34 1

26. skymitch89 (Posts: 1063; Member since: 05 Nov 2010)


I think you made a typo. I don't think that it should be "six omens, but should be "six months".

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:37 1

28. Bluesky02 (Posts: 1439; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)


Hah! I think he should clarify what is ahead of what?
Android ahead of iOS
Or
Android Phones ahead of iPhones.
Sure, there are tons of Android Phones sold. But in terms quality apps, i would say iOS is a little ahead of it.

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:40 1

30. Fayeznoor (Posts: 65; Member since: 15 Nov 2011)


one person from audience really showed disrespect to Eric and i am sure he was Apple fan by saying
" Why android sucks? What about us, the users. Why can't we have clipboard."

Eric replied " its taken us a while to get software that is really capable of delivering on the promise that you just said. All hardware vendors on the platform : top priority.

Took us a while to get charging and billing right.

In 6 months, as applications vendors are driven by volume, and all top apps will be android based. You'll want to develop for that platform. So think of it as a transition. " "

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 11:47 1

33. -RVM- (Posts: 329; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)


techie audience with apple gear ? cmon...

posted on 07 Dec 2011, 17:24

68. deadma44 (Posts: 18; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)


I thought the same thing. That sounds made up. What are they doing? Taking advantage of Siri and iChatting with each other? C'mon is right.

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