16053484998 F7a5868404 H

Android Gaming: What we love and hate about it

When it comes to selecting a platform for mobile games, it always comes down to a choice between iOS or Android. However, there are more affordable devices that run Google’s OS, leading more gamers to choose Android over iOS. The recent IDC report revealed that 3 out of 4 mobile devices (75%) used for gaming are Android-based smartphones or tablets. Although the report didn’t disclose the reasons why the mobile OS remains the top choice among gamers, they did reveal that online multiplayer games have a huge impact on its overall success.

What do gamers love about Android devices and Google apps? What do we know so far about its gaming experience?

Why more gamers stick to Android

There are various reasons why Android continues to flourish in the gaming sector. But, the items listed below are the main reasons why more gamers opt for Google-based smartphones than any other platform.

Cheaper device
Given its open source feature, Google’s mobile OS remains the top choice of many mobile manufacturers as their main system for their smartphones and tablets (78%). Even the budget-friendly smartphones are running the Android OS, giving various types of gamers (from hardcore to casual) more devices to choose from. Who doesn’t want affordable technologies? Although the performance cannot be compared with the premium handsets, cost remains as one of the main factors that most users consider when purchasing new technologies.

iOS games are also available on the Play Store
Why switch to something more expensive when the cheaper ones can get it? That is exactly what most gamers have in mind when they chose Android over iOS. Most of the top game developers always release their titles using the two platforms, giving players no reasons to switch or ditch their devices just to enjoy their premium games. Surprisingly, most European game developers (63%) said that they prefer Google’s mobile OS compared to the 57% who said they favour Apple’s OS. However, they dislike the free-to-play business models and would rather produce more PC paid games than get nothing from free downloads.

Same high performing mobile devices
We shouldn’t compare budget-friendly smartphones to Apple’s high-end iPhones because we all know that it’s a mismatch. But, premium Android handsets proved to be just as powerful in running graphic-intensive HD apps as the latter. New Android smartphones that run version 5 (Lollipop) usually come with 64-bit or octa-core processing power that gives a lag-free experience for gamers. According to O2, one of which is, the LG G4, which comes with a 3GB RAM, 32GB internal memory, and an octa-core processor that guarantees a seamless gaming experience for the user. Apart from LG, Samsung and Sony have also implemented the same powerful hardware to compete with the iPhone 6’s 64-bit processor.

Android also needs gaming improvement

Despite the increasing number of gamers that use Android devices, Google needs to spend more time to make the gaming experience seamless and spot on. Although various factors could affect the rendering of game apps on devices (i.e processing power, graphic chip, etc.), there are a few items that the search engine company can improve to enhance the overall experience of their mobile games.

Lower version of iOS apps
If you are a dual-smartphone user (owning an iOS and Android smartphones), you will notice how some applications appear to be in lower resolution or a downgrade version of the its iOS counterpart. Why is that, you ask? The answer lies in Google’s open source system. No app developer wants to release their premium apps for free, unless if they are a startup who wants to gain better traction from users. Thus, they release a lite version as their freemium application. The Google Play Store has also become a testing ground for many app developers, as its requirements are easier to adhere than those presented by Apple. But that is exactly why there are more premium game apps on the App Store than the Play Store.

Fragmentation problems
This issue has been one of the longest running problems of both Google and Apple, and it seems they prefer to keep it as it is to earn sales. Do you wonder why your old smartphone cannot upgrade to the new OS update? FRAGMENTATION. Both companies have applied this process to either let the user wait for the upgrade to arrive on their smartphones (which often takes time, depending on their geographic location) or they purchase a new device running the latest OS. Often, it will also depend on the mobile manufacturer’s built-in UI update like the Samsung’s TouchWiz or HTC’s SenseUI. Now, in order for you to enjoy the newly released version of your favourite game, you will have to wait for the update or purchase a new device – either way, it’s a win-win for Google and Apple.

Not living up to its hardware expectations
It’s not the first time you will hear someone rant about their Android not working as how it should be. Although mobile manufacturers are working on their premium handsets running compelling hardware and the latest mobile innovations, some of the Android-based devices are not as powerful as the former. There are still some devices out there that runs 512 MB RAM with WVGA screen that renders the worst gaming experience in today’s times. If you’re opting to get a new device soon, make sure to run a few apps simultaneously to see how it performs in terms of multi-tasking. It should give you an idea if the apps will crash, freeze the screen, or slow up the performance of the handset.Undoubtedly, mobile gaming will continue to rise in the coming years. Android will have to keep up with the changes and demands of the market, innovations, and technologies to continuously gain the trust of consumers, especially the gamers.

What do you love or hate about Android devices for gaming?

Photo Credit: bandzuki via Compfight | CC