A large part of mobile application development is user experience. Desigining applications that communicate in "standard" ways that fit with a user's cognitive model of what is expected.
Many companies have developed guidelines and standards for this communication with respect to mobile devices. We'll take a look at Apple's first.
The following required readings are testable material, they will show up in quizzes and be required to be demonstrated in the execution of assignments.
Apple uses movement just to look cool, the other two guidelines describe specific applications of movement. Apple with a flat look and feel, while Google has more of a 3d, magical representation (material) which allows them more degrees of freedom when considering how movement can play a role. Google's use of animation helps comprehension, spatially. Google material design has 'delightful details' going beyond the obvious to add details, perhaps using motion to look cool or 'fun' is a contribution to the in and of itself.
Apple does the hierarchical, drill down layout, Microsoft has a one page flat layout where you scroll around (music app). Apple and Microsoft implement flat, but apple shows all options whereas Microsoft only hints at what's next (to the right). Apple navigation system is more about keeping the user aware of where they are - Microsoft focuses on content and leaving the developer free to create unique layouts.
Microsoft talks about personality (brand, one color) and shades of color to communicate, whereas Apple suggests to use several colors and contrast to break up visual layout of the application's content. Microsoft guides exploration using shades and gradients, inviting exploration - Apple uses color more explicitly to define interaction or signal the user. Microsoft's use of color within an application could be considered more content focused, while Apple primarily uses color within the application for feedback. Microsoft and Apple both use 1 color for branding an app.
Google looks at the physicallity of the icon, paper prototypes; Microsoft seeks simplistic shapes and flat design (Product). Microsoft conveys depth in icons by knocking out a portion - Google uses actual layering, light and shadows.
Apple suggests several ways to use depth, translucent layers or flat layers or zoom - Google talks about placing elements in 3d space involving a z-axis and shadows.
Gestures for Apple is about how the user interacts with the screen, should be intuitive - Microsoft's use of motion for transitions and feedback is also framed in their guideline as being intuitive for the user. Microsoft wants motion to be a hint to the user (content flying off the page means explore) whereas Apple doesn't mention using motion in this way.
Typography driven layouts rely less on the user intuitively understanding the app but require more reading which may lead to longer task time. Typography design lends itself to being more about written content driven applications.
Google explicitly describes how to handle errors (if you exceed char limits, green to red). Apple, Microsoft don't really provide much guidance. Google when apps crash, they ask if we'd like to wait - Microsoft just hard closes, abrupt and not very user friendly. Apple will sometimes hang with a loading icon, no indication of progress (has it crashed, do I need to force quit the app, what if I don't know how to do it).
In terms of an application crashing, is the burden of notifying the user placed on the developer?
Microsoft and Google have an emphasis on how this works (form factor blending), iOS is more specific to mobile - systematic design vs. specific designing to a form factor. This approach may stem from Apple having a proprietary approach and they are the only hardware manufacture.
Apple is about adapting to the changing display environment (i.e. regular vs. compact view) while maintaining focus on the primary content. Microsoft is about responsive design across multiple platforms so that users can switch between devices, input methods, etc. and react well to them. Google is about using structured grids (i.e. keylines and metrics) that work across various pages in order to maintain a consistent look and feel.
Apple is more focus on how to ease the navigation, Apple creates different types of navigation tool that shows clear structure and hierarchy of the app. (Bars, content views, controls view and temporary views.) These UI elements help user to navigate the app without lost. Microsoft is more focus on organizing the content, Microsoft has different navigation patterns which helps navigates easily. (Hub/ pivot control, hub control, pivot control, drilldown, uniform page) These unique patterns help user to manage the views of the app and prevent them moving back and forth. Google is more focus on motion, Google believes motion isn't just enhance user experience but also create meaning to user. Responsive interaction is a big topic, which requires the user input in order to create logical feedback to user. (surface reaction, material response, radial reaction)
In regards to different UI designs, I think Google uses a more realistic approach as they slight shadows on each elements to imitate real life paper. While Apple uses flat and minimal or no shadows in their design, which is a more digital approach to present its interface design.