While a relatively small proportion of Android users have currently signed up for Android Lollipop, the next version of the operating system, Android M, is already being worked on. Meanwhile, Apple will be dropping the latest version of its mobile operating system, iOS 9, at its Worldwide Developers Conference in June. This Apple confab will take place between June 8 and 12 in San Francisco, and among the exhibits is certain to be the next generation mobile operating system. According to recent reports, Google will reveal Android M at the upcoming I/O event that takes place on May 28.
So how do these two critical mobile operating systems compare to one another? Here is a rundown of everything we know about them thus far.
Android M – one-touch security
Security is an increasingly important aspect of mobile operating systems, and it appears that Android M will make this a real priority. With Google having included a kill switch option in Android 5.1 in order to ensure that stolen phones are useless, it will be further extending this process with a one-touch login for all supported applications in Android M.
This will effectively enable Android users to log into all applications supported by the functionality on Android devices without ever needing to enter a password. Effectively, this will restrict entry to apps to the device owner alone, also providing welcome simplification in the way that software is accessed.
Smart home upgrades
With news emanating this week that Apple will place greater emphasis on smart home functionality in future smartphone releases, it appears that Android M will be responding to this tendency. According to the latest reports, smart home-related technology will be an increasingly important feature of Android going forward, with the operating system proposing to offer you complete control over connected devices at home via its Nest software.
The Apple Watch has been a massive success for Apple, already eclipsing the number of devices running Android Wear. Thus, it is predicted that Google will make significant improvement to how its operating system interacts with smartwatches. It has been suggested that Google will place a particular emphasis on notifications and voice input in Android.
Reuters has also reported that this next generation releases will place a significant focus on Google’s Android Auto software. This is predicted to be another battleground in the coming years, as Apple is seemingly keen on this niche based on its recent electric car-related activity.
Android Auto is not part of mainstream functionality in vehicles as of yet, but the first wave of cars to integrate with this software will arrive early in 2016. It is expected that this feature will be demonstrated at CES 2015 in a few weeks’ time. At present, early vehicles will require a device to be plugged into the dashboard in order to access music, maps and other services. But it is already reported that Android M will eventually control all of a vehicle’s entertainment, messaging and other systems in a standalone format.
Google may also consider improving the wallet functionality in Android M, integrating Google Health and Google Now, and producing a more efficient messaging hub. There will doubtless also be some smaller upgrades and tweaking as Google endeavours to improve the efficiency of its propriety operating system.
Apple’s iOS 9 operating system will in all probability arrive just after Android M. It is absolutely expected that Apple will unveil the latest version of its mobile OS at its Worldwide Developers Conference in June. And early reports suggest that the number one emphasis of iOS 9 will be to improve the stability of the operating system, as well as providing a platform with less bugs than iOS 8.
Additionally, in an attempt to ensure that iOS 9 appeals to as wide a range of Apple users as possible, it is reported that Apple will include a new optimization method in this new operating system. The rationale behind this is to ensure that iOS 9 better supports older hardware, including the iPad Mini and the iPhone 4s. Although Apple will not support dated hardware indefinitely, this does show a pleasing commitment to supporting some of it less well-heeled customers.
But there will be a raft of new features also included in this new operating system, as Apple steadily changes the emphasis of iOS. Perhaps most important of all will be improved multitasking functionality within the software, which will enable future Apple mobile devices to run programs simultaneously in a more sophisticated fashion. It is expected that both the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus will feature 2 GB of RAM when they are released this year, and Apple evidently intends to put this to good use by ensuring that they run more efficiently than last year’s iPhone 6.
Additionally, Apple will be introducing a new application called Home in this version of iOS. This application indicates the seriousness of the smart home as an economic battleground in the foreseeable future, as Home will begin a major Apple push into the Internet of things. This software will act as a control hub for third-party products, enabling smart applications within one’s property to be controlled via a smartphone.
It has also been widely reported that Apple will be significantly altering the appearance of the iOS 9 operating system. Central to this will be a new font, which was initially debuted in the recent Apple Watch. The San Francisco font has proved to be pretty successful in Apple’s embryonic smartwatch, and it is now expected that this will migrate to iOS 9. The San Francisco font is intended to make text easy to read on the smaller mobile devices, as well as enabling scaling of text to be completed more efficiently.
Apple will also include an app called Transit in the iOS 9 operating system, which is intended to make navigating cities via public transport much easier. It seems that the emphasis with iOS 9 will be very much on connected devices in the real world, and utilizing them to make everyday life less stressful and more enjoyable.