Apps Look Good on iOS, Bad on Android, Blogger Says

By on April 8th, 2011 07:34 GMT

A blog post picked up by Apple pundit John Gruber indicates that at least some developers take very little interest in polishing up the Android versions of their applications, whereas the iOS implementations clearly get far better treatment, as far their UI is concerned.

In a post titled “Why Do Apps From the Same Company Look Worse on Android Than on iPhone?”, the author of a blog called Android Gripes aims to demonstrate that at least in some cases, a company’s application looks far worse on Google’s mobile OS than on Apple’s.

Likely not biased, the blogger tries to get the best of both worlds by using “an iPhone and an Android phone at the same time,” yet he often finds that “apps from the same company look a lot different on these two platforms - the ones on Android usually look much worse,” he notes.

He offers various examples, including the popular Meebo IM client which “pretty much looks like a programming class project,” the author believes, as well as the Facebook app, where the icons are not properly aligned, while the extra space at the bottom of the screen “makes the view look very awkward.”

His last example, the Speedtest app, also shows some differences, though not so radical, he admits.

Still, “Android UI putting the tab buttons on the top is quite distracting,” he outlines for those trying to make up their mind between an iOS and an Android purchase.

He observes that the developer of Speedtest “chose to improve the iPhone interface first [yet] they should have the same user interface standard.”

His theories include the fact that iPhone developers are better at user interface design, and that the iPhone development environment is better than that of Google’s Android, but admits that these are questions left unanswered.

Yet, he also stresses that iPhone users may care more about user interface, which is fairly possible, and finally that Android may “implant the ignorance of beauty, usability and focus on details into the community at the first place.”

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Examples offered by Android Gripes aiming to show the differences in user interface design between the two versions of Facebook's mobile application for iPhone and Android smartphones
   Examples offered by Android Gripes aiming to show the differences in user interface design between the two versions of Facebook's mobile application for iPhone and Android smartphones