Opinion: With iOS 9, Apple Is On A Warpath For Google's Users

Whenever Apple is asked about how its user numbers stack up against Android's user base, the answer from Cupertino is always delivered on-script: the only number Apple cares about is its customer satisfaction rating. But with the announcement of iOS 9, it's clear that answer is now merely lip service. Apple is coming for Google's Android users in a big way.

When Apple announced its new Music product at WWDC this morning, we though it was going to be an Apple exclusive product. That's why when Apple dropped the news that there would be an Android version of the Music service it caused such a massive stir.

It's the first app Cupertino has made that can live outside the mobile walled garden, and it's Apple's way of establishing a beachhead on Google's territory.

Presumably, Apple's hope is to wow Android users with its strongest assets: its music and software. There's a theory in psychology called the Halo effect that when applied to tech sees users more predisposed to choose something else from that manufacturer in future. That's what Apple is going for here: by getting Android users on-side with Apple's way of thinking, they're more likely to choose Apple products over Google's in future.

Apple is also beefing up many of its other products to give users who defect from Android a similar, if not better experience. Siri, for example, is becoming a "predictive assistant", giving users the information they need before or as they need it similar to Google Now, and Apple Watch apps are being opened up and made native to make the whole thing more useful and speedy.

So once it has them in the net, so to speak, how does Apple plan to smuggle its newly converted users out of Android and into the welcoming arms of a new operating system? With a new switching app of course.

It's called Move To iOS, and it's a way of safely smuggling users out of Android and into Apple's way of thinking.

Move to iOS lets you wirelessly switch from Android to iOS, and moves everything from your contacts, bookmarks, mail accounts, wallpapers, calendars, songs and other content over to the new iPhone.

The apps that you have on Android that were free are automatically installed onto the new iPhone, and apps that cost money are added to your iTunes Wish List so you can buy them as you want them.

Apple even makes the disposal process for Android handsets feel good for switchers: after the migration is complete, users are encouraged to take their phones into the Apple Store so they can be recycled.

And that's it! The trap will be sprung and users will be wooed by pretty lights and bright colours into the waiting arms of Apple.

Whether it works remains to be seen, but it's a cunning plan that Google needs to know is coming.

Luke Hopewell travelled to WWDC 2015 as a guest of Apple.

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