Tablets: Battle of the OS - FIGHT! (Now with poll!)

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Mad Mac Maniac, Feb 10, 2011.

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Which tablet OS do you like the most? (excluding external factors like apps)

  1. iOS 4.0

    63.0%
  2. Android Honeycomb

    21.4%
  3. WebOS 3.0

    12.7%
  4. QNX (playbook)

    2.9%
  1. Mad Mac Maniac, Feb 10, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2011

    Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #1
    So lets face it... when it all comes down to it, it's all about the OS. Hardware will come... the apps will come... even the speed of the OS will come... So let us keep all those types of topics OUT of this thread. How do you think the 4 present/upcoming tablet OS's stack up against each other?

    Personally, coming from a 3 year iPhone owner and future iPad 2 owner, I think iOS has some catching up to do....

    Playbook I think is the weakest (but I also know the least about it). It's multitasking ability far exceeds that of iOS, but aside from that I don't know of any real perks over iOS. Oh except flash support of course (which all 3 have aside from Apple...) I'm not really sure how the notifications work on this device? I think this will become the most niche market with people who love their blackberries.

    Honeycomb is next. It's widgets seem to really make things easy at a glance. It shows how to truly make use of those huge tablet screen... I really wish we got some of them on iOS, although IMO honeycomb may be a little bit too focused on those widgets. I haven't really seen how honeycomb handles notifications (which I assume is better than iOS) or multitasking. But overall this OS looks to be a pretty solid competitor.

    Next is WebOS. I just watched the demo from the media event yesterday and I was completely blown away. If you haven't seen it, it is really worth a watch. http://www.engadget.com/2011/02/09/hp-posts-complete-think-beyond-event-video/ The demo is about 25 minutes long from min 30 to min 55. First of all I LOVE the way it handles multitasking with the cards and "flick away", and ability to stack cards on top of each other. The notification system is light years above iOS. unobtrusively popping up in the top right area, then giving access to all your missed notifications at a glance when you press the notification area. "Just type" is much more convenient than iOS's universal search and you can even use it to post twitter statuses and send sms's. The photos app integrates with social media sites like facebook to see all your albums. Heck webOS integrates all your social media by combining facebook, twitter, IMs, SMS, email, and who knows what else so you can easily communicate through them all at once. Oh yeah, and when you are home (I think u need to have your pre 3 docked on the touchstone) your touchpad receives all your incoming texts and calls! You can also send web sites to and from your pre 3 and touchpad by simply touching them together (a bit gimmicky but the future potential is there) The whole OS feels very polished all together

    Then we have iOS, which I love but.... lets see it has a lot of apps... wait we are comparing the OS's so can't mention that... it's quick... no can't mention that either (plus who knows how quick the others will be at this point). I don't know I just can't really think of many major features to hold it above the competitors. No flash (option is always good, even if you don't personally want it and all the other 3 seem to handle it find), really clunky notifications (the worst of the 4), very dumbed down multitasking (the worst of the 4)... I'm not trying to hate on iOS because I can taste my iPad 2 already, but I really can't seem to think of a huge draw of the particular OS (besides the plethera of apps... which apple really had nothing to do with). Airplay? But I don't have apple tv or any compatible speakers. I mean I suppose the simplicity can be an advantage... and there is a general polish to all the built in apps. I would feel comfident holding iOS up against the playbook and honeycomb, but after seeing webOS 3.0, iOS just seems elementary.

    Anyway, what are your thoughts on these 4? Yes I know only iOS is actually out right now, but there is plenty of demo footage to at least compare the way the OS operates. I know this also turned a little bit into a webOS love fest, but as I said I just watched it and was quite impressed.

    But webOS 3.0 won't be out till summer so I will already be soaking in my iPad 2 on iOS 5.0 by then. I'm really hoping iOS 5.0 brings a lot more to the table.
     
  2. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

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    #2
    iOS has one teeny weeny advantage over the others: simplicity. The target audience likes the lack of all that cool geeky stuff that makes us happy, that makes it into a highly efficient work tool. This is the main thing Apple will be banking on. Eventually, it will be a real heavy-duty notebook replacement, but the transition will be fairly gradual. This is almost identical to how the first Macintosh computer debuted (though the first gen iPad is significantly more capable and more affordable).
     
  3. Mitchrapp macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 2, 2010
    #3
    That's too bad to. Apple will sell to me, you, a college student or Grandma. They make their money. Though I want that highly efficient work tool you mention. It's too simplistic at the moment.
     
  4. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

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    #4
    The JB community are hard on Apple's butt with every iOS update. Apple simply has to keep opening up corners of the OS until it will become practical for power users to use it as a real tool without the JB.
     
  5. GadgetAddict macrumors 6502

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    #5
    I just watched the TouchPad demo and I have to say... wow. WebOS has some really awesome features. There is definitely going to be a battle of the tablets. I've had iPhones and the iPad since day one and thought they were the best. Of all the so called "iPad killers" I personally consider the TouchPad to be the only viable "threat".

    iOS holds the strong App card but as a system webOS looks so much better. Some folks here mentioned the simplicity of iOS, well, I didn't see anything complicated with webOS. Search bar with multiple uses? Bump the devices to transfer web pages? No cable charging and syncing? How much simpler can it get? And the funny thing is that these are features you'd expect from Apple!

    So yep, I'm super excited. There are some brilliant guys at Apple who I'm sure are working hard to top the webOS and any OS out there. We don't know what they'll come up with but it's definitely going to be awesome...
     
  6. hi res macrumors member

    hi res

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    #6
    iOS wins.

    iOS can run all the same processes (Flash aside) with comparatively weaker specs and do it with the greatest of ease. The simplicity of Apple not only comes in its UI, but the system as a whole. Spec bumps from Apple are dependent on what the public thinks it should get; the truth is they just design the type of hardware that can run more efficiently with less specs. It'd be like putting a Ferrari engine in an old Volkswagen when the ol' V-Dub has been getting you to work reliably for the past 10 years. But if Ford and Chevy start using Ferrari engines, Volkswagen had better start using them too--otherwise they're not "keeping up." Capiche?
     
  7. AppleScruff1 macrumors G3

    AppleScruff1

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    #7
    Interesting video and WebOS does look good. I wonder if it has pinch to zoom? I don't recall seeing him do that. If the touch screen is as responsive as those that Apple uses it will be a big plus. So many devices are lacking in this area that Apple has mastered, just like the touchpad on the Macbooks.

    It looks like there will be some good competition if the Touchpad is priced reasonably and works as well as it seemed to on the video. Competition is good for the consumer.
     
  8. kis macrumors 65816

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    #8
    I've used WebOS before - it really doesn't get any simpler and user-friendly than that.
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #9
    WebOS is one that is also extremely simple to use.

    One note about simplicity and the common criticism of android is for geeks.

    So is the argument that android OS is for geeks because its not as simple to use as iOS? In other words do apple fanboys exhibit such a high level of intellectual arrogance that thy believe most people are unable to comprehend the use of android OS? If that was the case why are consumers buying android phones in such large numbers. If the OS was so hard to use, they'd not buy it regardless of any sort of deal that the carriers were offering.

    From what I see, honeycomb provides a slick, polished interface that enhances the users experience. Since its not out yet, only time will tell how it compares to iOS.
     
  10. Gryzor macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Nothing I have seen so far beats iOS in aesthetics and simplicity. I don't need to customise the OS to my own personal liking, I just want it to be there and do what it is supposed to do. Apps take care of the rest, and Apple lead the way there to, so...take your Xoom and PlayBook away thanks.
     
  11. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #11
    I think you've hit on a key point here.

    The fact of the matter is that, for all it's whiz-bang appeal, multi-tasking on a computing device tends to make the user less productive.

    Whatever the task you are trying to do: Write a report; read some dense text; play a game; reasearch; etc. - you will be get far less done if you are concurrently checking your Facebook wall or Twitter feed while getting inning-by-inning box scores from the Cubs game.

    Consumers and businesses have adopted the iPad by the millions because it does what it does extremely well. Because it allows them to largely forget about all the "junk" that comes with the PC or laptop experience: the constantly updating drivers and patches. The viruses and malware. The crashes and hangs. All of which - might I remind folks - are a direct result of the desire to cram more and more "features" (such as multitasking) into the operating system.

    Multitasking is for people who think their brains are capable of juggling two complex tasks at once. With very rare exceptions - they are wrong.
     
  12. walkie macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Competitors are offering all the features iPad lacks, enough RAM, usb ports, sd card ports, real multitasking, a standalone tab, flash capability, file management, java capability, so in this case Apple set the trend and competitors copy adding all the features users want, buying an iPad 2 might not be a smart purchase having all these tabs out there to choose. Apple wants us to keep buying the next iPad version every year by adding little by little all the features the competitors have already included in their tabs, I'm almost sure my next tab will be one of the competitor's tab.
     
  13. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #13
    So being able to run more then app at a time makes it less productive from a user's perspective :rolleyes:

    That flies in the face of OSX, Windows, Linux, WebOs, and even iOS which has a crippled implementation of multitasking.

    I'm actually being very productive right now with listening to music, having email check itself and being able to type in safari
     
  14. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #14
    There is a ton of research that shows - quite conclusively - that a user who is juggling two or three things at the same time, gets less done, makes more mistakes, and misses more deadlines.

    And most significantly, the people who claimed they were best at multitasking - usually turned out to be the worst performers.

     
  15. Outrigger macrumors 68000

    Outrigger

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    #15
    By your example, companies should all be making computers that can only do one thing at a time, since, juggling two or three things would be prone to more mistakes. Its a bit difficult imagining not being able to talk on the phone, checking out reviews on yelp and downloading an app in the background since doing these things would "get less done, make more mistakes and miss more deadlines".
     
  16. MagnumOP macrumors regular

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    #16
    iOS allows users to multitask in that manner.

    My big question for people demanding better multi-tasking is: what are you going to do with it?

    I watched an android demo where they showed off "true multi-tasking." The user was watching a video in the browser, switched to their e-mail, and when they switched back the video had been continuously playing. Big deal. "You too can miss parts of your video while it plays in the background."

    But more seriously, what types of tasks do you need to do to multi-task better?

    To me the only thing iOS really needs is a better notification system, and perhaps limited widgets/more customizability of the home screen.
     
  17. aristobrat macrumors G4

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    #17
    I'm curious to see how many first-time Android owners will re-up with another Android phone.

    According to one survey, a huge amount of Verizon's current Android owners showed interest in switching to the iPhone as soon as it was an option.
    http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2011/02...-users-likely-to-switch-to-iphone-on-day-one/
     
  18. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #18
    Yes I mentioned iOS's 'simplicity' in my original post, but I'm just not so sure that matters as much as you would think. I mean it takes more than 30 seconds to master Mac OS X so should no one use it? Plus I'm pretty sure I understand almost everything i need about webOS from watching the 25 minute demo and if it only takes 25 minutes to learn an OS, I think that is a winner right there. Shaving off another 20 minutes on the learning curve doesn't really make a difference, especially when I would spend 5 straight hours on my tablet when I first get it.

    webOS demonstrates this very well. say you are in an email and you click on a link, it opens a new "card" and stacks it right on top of your email card. then you reply to the email it it pops open a new card and stacks it on top of the same stack. say when you are writing that one email a new email notification pops up subtly at the top of your screen, you glance at it and decide that is more important than what you're working on so you pop that email open, new card, and then hit reply and you have a new card to create your email in. you can flip very seamlessly through all your cards to check the website, or the email, or whatever just as you would through all your windows on a computer. All those cards would be grouped together in a stack to keep together all your same thoughts. You can also drag any card over by itself or onto another stack. Whenever you are done with a card just flick it away.

    Now imagine doing all this on iOS.
     
  19. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #19
    I'm a second generation android user.
    I started out with a Nexus One, and found that to be an excellent phone. I went to the Droidx and was underwhelmed. My company being security minded as opted to enforce encrypted group policies where it comes to accessing the exchange servers. This is something that blackberry and the iPhone supports. Since it seems android does not, my company is in the process of blocking access to the corporate email servers. So for me, is a forgone conclusion that I'll not be getting an android based phone but rather an iphone.

    For me, its not a huge deal, I like the iPhone but I was interested in what android had to offer.
     
  20. aduteau macrumors 6502a

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    #20
    I dont know about you guys ... but the way I see it ... is that when Apple Introduced iphone OS back in 2007, they may not have thought that it would take off that much (remember that apps only came in iphone OS2.0). The OS really took off after the app store got running.

    Before people downloaded apps from the app store ... people where stock with the apps that Apple had on the iphone ( Weather, notes ... ipod), So Apple didnt think at first that people would need to multitask and did not include it as part of the foundation of iOS.

    Now fast forward to today, and we have WebOS that came later into the game .. but maybe they saw this flaw into iOS but they took the time to include those functionality into their OS as a foundation.

    You can clearly see that WebOS really thought out about multitasking in their OS, where iOS's solution for multitasking just feels like a patch ...

    Again because Apple was first with their OS they may not have anticipated that notifications would need to be cleaner ... WebOS shines in this category too .. Because they learned from iOS and released it after ??

    What iOS needs is this:
    Last year we got Back to the Mac ... Now We need Back to iOS.

    iOS is build from Mac OSX, if Apple really wants to up the game ... let us get features for Multitasking from the Mac, We need a sort of Mission Control User interface from Mac OSX lion, i think with all the power under the hood that rumors point out for iPad 2 ... that it would be really possible to have.

    Why not let us use Widgets like in Mac OSX, we could decide to bring out front the dashboard in front of any App .. just like in Mac OSX insted of having them clog the Home screen just like Android.

    Notifications ... why not have something similar as Growl ??

    Flash support ... Apple is being painted in the corner with this one ... they are the only ones not supporting this ... and with the new 10.2 Flash out this week that uses only 10-15% of CPU's ... could Apple change their stance and update Safari ?

    What do you guys think ? Should Apple do a Back to iOS and borrow features from Mac OSX to stay ahead of the game ... or just stick to putting patches like they seem to be doing ... ???
     
  21. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #21
    beautiful post aduteau. I agree with you 100% on everything you said in your post. In fact I have already been hoping that mission control and other features in lion would make its way to iOS.

    I'm really, really hoping lion and iOS 5.0 have a joint release this summer as mirror images of one another. One optimized for touch, the other for a mouse.

    5 finger pinch out for mission control. 5 finger pinch in for dashboard. 5 finger swipe side to side to move between apps. Maybe the 5/4 finger up swipe to pull up the multitasking tray but... make it more useful! One line of apps? why don't you pull up 4 lines of space instead of 1? can keep apps, brightness settings, wifi settings, bluetooth settings, maybe even a cutomizable set of settings??? and then maybe the 5/4 finger down swipe could... maybe that could be dashboard and the 5 finger pinch in be something else. I'm just spitballing here, but there seriously is potential!
     
  22. elan123 macrumors 6502

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    #22
    I second this.
     
  23. aduteau macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    Thx for hearing me out :)

    Some people may not agree with the fact that some features on iOS just look like patch work ... but when we actually stick our heads out of the iOS environment and actually take the time, look at what else is happening in the mobile OS and put our ego's a side that we are no longer alone in this game ... Well .. when you actually look at whats happening from the competition ... you know that Apple needs to up their game in iOS ... and that is just plain facts.

    We are lucky enough to have the ground work from Mac OSX ... why not use it for mobile devices like the iPad now that the next Hardware Revision will most likely include a Dual CPU and maybe a Dual GPU ... iOS can use grand central technology ... why not put it to good use with User Interface ???

    I know I am not going to be using that much processing power using Numbers or Pages apps ... in fact almost none of the apps in the apps store (other then games) will need that much horse power.

    At the end of the day ... All Tablets will have almost all the same specs .. but with fancy names for CPU and SOC so that it sounds good in marketing terms ... but what will truly make the difference in the tablet wars ... is going to be the OS.
     
  24. MagnumOP macrumors regular

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    #24

    Keeping a draft e-mail open without having to save it is nice. But it seems to me that your problem isn't with iOS multi-tasking, but with how you switch between tasks. Switching is a little clumsy when compared to some other devices agreed. But multi-tasking doesn't need to be changed, only how you switch.

    Someone else in this thread already perfectly described what apple should do to fix the task switching problem.

    I could be wrong, but it seems like people complain about the multi-tasking ability of iOS when what they mean to complain about is the process of switching between tasks, they are related topics but these are two different animals.

    EDIT:
    adding that draft email functionality would be easy for apple to do, just add tabs/pages to mail like exist in safari.
     
  25. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

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    #25
    Although a tablet is not a netbook, manufacturers do seem to be treading the same path:
    When the first netbook came out, it had a couple of USPs: It was small and light, and was cheap. It had no frills and did what it did brilliantly.

    Then, over time, other manufacturers joined in and started a spec war. Netbooks got bigger, more powerful and (more importantly) more expensive: Their chief USPs disappeared in a cloud of technological one-upmanship.

    The tablet has now stepped into the space left behind by netbooks: A cheap, light, easy to carry and easy to use device designed for casual use and to complement another computer. It's a device you can give to almost anyone of any age and they'll know how to use it within minutes: The OS may look simplistic compared to honeycomb and WebOS, but that simplicity is what makes it easy to use and what makes it so successful

    Apple understood the market and the iPad fits brilliantly into that niche. However, other manufacturers are now starting to try another spec war with tablets sprouting all sorts of ports, dual core processors, desktop OS features, etc, and we are seeing tablets that are trying to out-spec the iPad without understanding what it was that made the iPad successful.

    That's why, IMO, the iPad will continue to be the #1 selling tablet: Apple understand the market
     

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