Mobile magazine app on Android or iOS – what’s better? Publishers who decide to distribute their content on mobile devices are probably asking themselves this question more than once. There is no universal answer – it lies in readers’ individual preferences and data analytics. How to get to this information? What should you consider when choosing an app for your magazine? I’ll explain it to you in a moment.
In most cases, if you want to have a mobile version of your magazine, you usually choose between two operating systems: Android and iOS. Both of them have jointly possessed almost 99 percent of the global market share. Looking at the statistics, it would seem that building only an Android application is more reasonable. Why? Because Android is still the most popular platform and is targeted by over 74% of all mobile developers. However, is this really an obvious choice? Not necessarily, considering that iOS dominates the profit share, generating over 83% more revenue for app makers than Android.
Let’s take a look at some statistics and facts which can make your choice easier.
Android and iOS operating systems advantages
Both of these systems have advantages, are valuable for some reasons, and can bring you profits. There are data that can be helpful in making this decision – have a look at the list below.
When choosing between iOS and Android mobile magazine app, consider the following facts.
- Where do your readers come from?
Android is the most popular mobile operating system in many countries, dominating in South America, some parts of Africa, almost all Europe and Asia. While iOS dominates in North America, North Europe and Australia. The conclusion we can draw is that if you want to conquer the Asian market or readers in Africa, consider the Android version of the application. When you choose the system for your app, firstly, check out where most of your customers come from. It could be the first step to choosing the right platform.
This map will be helpful.
- Do you plan to sell your magazine inside the app?
Mobile magazine apps allow for in-app purchases; users can buy a single issue of your magazine or different types of subscriptions (e.g. monthly or yearly). If your mobile magazine app allows for in-app purchases, you should consider iOS apps. Why? The reason is simple. Apple generates 45% more revenue per user from In-App purchases than Google does from In-App purchases on Android. iOS users are also 10% more likely than Android users to make an In-App purchase.
- How much money can you spend on the app?
Take costs into account. When designing the app for Android devices, the costs may be higher due to the large number of devices it needs to be compatible with compared to Apple, in which it is enough to consider the iPhone and iPad. Sometimes, it could be more profitable to use the services of digital publishing companies which take care of building an app and also keep an eye on all the updates. Some of these companies offer special price packets if you pick one app on two systems.
As you can see, both of these systems have advantages.
After making the decision, you have to focus on analysis to find out if your choice was good and what solution you should invest harder in the future. Sometimes, the reason for bad results in the mobile app is hidden behind statistics and analytics.
The analytics will tell you the truth
If you already have a mobile magazine app, you have to spend time on performing analysis to ensure great results such as the number of downloads, the app openings or the article openings. The more time you spend on data analytics, the more effective your magazine app will be. The mobile app analytics can tell you things like:
- where traffic comes from,
- what pages and articles are the most popular,
- what pages drive the most ad clicks,
- what is the quality of engagement.
If you have that knowledge, you can guide your readers to your content and monetize it as effectively as possible.
But the most important thing to remember is that analytics also help you answer the question about the number of app installations and article views on iOS and Android.
Below, I’ll share with you a small fragment of an analytics dashboard which is available for PressPad’s customers (real-time analytics and easy-to-understand dashboards are an important tool in the modern publishers’ toolbox, that’s why they are a part of PressPad publishing platform).
Thanks to this analysis option, PressPad’s customers can see how many iOS and Android users install the app, open it, view articles, and how it is changing over time. Then, you’ll know which system earns you more money: Android, iOS, or both.
Checking what version of the device your readers use is significant. It allows you to get great results in your content targeting strategy.
If your app is downloaded by people using the iOS system only, there’s no sense in continuing Android. It’s better to focus on ensuring that the app will look and function as good as possible on Apple’s devices and thus granting your readers the best user experience. Or in the opposite scenario – if your readers download the Android version, focus on it. Of course, you can also keep both and reach people from all over the world. In such a case, attach greater importance to the one that brings you profit.
You can also choose an option including an app for both systems. We can observe that the need for creating cross-platform apps is increasing. Cross-platform app solution provides great cost saving advantages by developing one app that can run over multiple platforms.
When you already have a mobile app, regularly read user reviews on the App Store and Google Play. They show you what to improve, what to add and what your readers expect, what they think is good and what is bad. If there aren’t any opinions, you can just ask people about it on your social media: Hey guys, which application do you prefer, for Android or iOS? What are you missing in the iOS app? Take user statements as a guide.
Choosing an operating system is just the beginning
The mobile magazine app, regardless of the operating system you choose, is an extremely useful tool both for you and your readers. The debate of “Android or iOS – what’s better?” will go on for as long as Android and iOS continue to dominate the smartphone market and people continue to keep choosing them. In my opinion, the best answer is “both”. Only then can you reach different groups of people or check what’s more profitable for you and eventually, after thorough analysis, decide on one solution.
Remember that regardless of whether you choose the mobile magazine apps for iOS, Android, or both, you must always take care of promotion.
Because the first rule of increasing the number of app downloads is to show your app the world.