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Bioshock for iOS: An Example of iOS’s Superiority Over Android

On August 28th, game publisher 2K released a port of the critically acclaimed original Bioshock game for iOS devices. This makes Bioshock one of the first console-quality games that have been released for a mobile platform. While certain elements of the game have been pared down or removed, such as dynamic fog effects, so that the app could fit within the 2 gigabyte limit imposed by Apple and run smoothly on mobile hardware, the core of the game has remained  untouched compared to the “full” version.


Not everyone is happy, however, about this remarkable achievement. Android users, for example, instantly began venting their displeasure for the exclusion of their beloved platform on internet forums. Whether 2K will release an Android port of the game remains to be seen, and the company has announced it has no current plans for Bioshock for Android.

Developers still favor iOS because of the excellent tools Apple provides and the very foundations of the operating system itself. There significantly less fragmentation for iOS devices, and the powerful hardware and streamlined software that Apple equips its mobile products with make it easier for developers to create or port demanding applications without making significant compromises.

These points demonstrate the most significant difference between iOS and Android. iOS was built from the ground up for performance and efficiency and was based off the same kernel as OSX. On the other hand, Android was built from the ground up for the ability to run well on slow or limited hardware and was based off of Linux.

Another important aspect to consider is that while iOS apps run natively, Android apps are actually Dalvik executables that must run in Dalvik virtual machines within Android itself. This extra layer between apps and the OS reduces the performance and efficiency of Android devices. Although Google has admirably tried to address these fundamental shortcomings with the Android L, the sheer diversity of devices that run the operating system present serious interface and functionality issues for developers.

Apple currently has the superior platform over Google. That doesn’t mean it will remain so forever. If Apple trips up its platform at any point in time, Google will be that much closer to world domination.

Bioshock can be bought at the App Store for $15.


Written by Raymond Cao’17

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