I am not sure if this is the right stackexchange site to ask this question. The company that I work for gives us only IOS designs (buildt totally using IOS components. No material design whatsoever). And they expect the android developers to use the same design for android. Android developers find it very difficult.

As far as my opinion is concerned IOS and Android both follow different design philosophies; one follows flat and the other material. I think it is utterly foolish to ask an android developer to develop using IOS designs and vice-versa.
I would like to have opinions of designers? Am I right in thinking that there should strictly be a design for each platform? Or is it normal to start developing on android using screens designed for ios?

The question is not whether I should use the same assets (icons) as given in the IOS design. The design it self has used IOS components. Like IOS tabs, IOS bottom sheet, IOS style time picker etc. It's my humble opinion that designing an IOS style time picker or tab or bottomsheet will be an overkill on android.

3 Answers 3


It depends what you're building.

If you're designing an app experience from scratch, and your app has multiple screens, usually the main difference is that you have different ways of affording back-navigation due to the guaranteed presence of a back button outside of the app's chrome on Android, and Android's weird "up" button behavior. So the navigation spec (how to go back up one step, how you go back to the application start page, etc.) will probably need to be customized by OS.

On iOS, the spec will also need to explain how to deal with the weird notches of iPhone X. This can have pervasive impact, e.g. with sheets coming up from bottom of the screen that need extra padding, and basically a lot of dead space to deal with.

If you're designing with notifications, you'll also usually need a different treatment for notifications due to different OS capabilities.

So - when you got something where the platform has different capabilities is when you'll need platform-specific designs the most.

On the other hand once that framing has already been put in place for you and you're developing components that fit into that broader picture, then I think it's a fine tradeoff to keep designs consistent across both platforms at the component level.

  • We are building from scratch
    – Ashwin
    May 3, 2018 at 3:52
  • @Ashwin ok - added some examples of things you may want to consider
    – qoba
    May 3, 2018 at 6:54

It's generally better to separately consider the design conventions of each platform, from an overall "design quality" standpoint. But, as with any project, there are trade-offs. If #1 priority on the project is SPEED, and getting a minimum viable product shipped ASAP, then perhaps using just the iOS design assets on the other platforms would be OK. What are the project priorities?

  • Please check the edit
    – Ashwin
    May 3, 2018 at 4:21
  • @Ashwin "designing an IOS style time picker or tab or bottomsheet will be an overkill on android." Probably true. Better to use the corresponding/equivalent Material Design UI component.
    – gpgpgp
    May 4, 2018 at 20:17

Did you ask why they expect the android developers to use the same design? Answering this question will help you to understand situation. Are you sure this is native iOS design and not a kind of cross platform elements? Anyways knowing reasons will enable to find appropriate arguments in discussion.

  • Well it has only IOS components. A glance at it will tell you that it is IOS design. As to the reason why they want to use the same design; they said "This is the standard followed in all the companies.". I find that argument ridiculous.
    – Ashwin
    May 14, 2018 at 4:43
  • Well, the next thing to do is to prove that argument is ridiculous. If they can provide company names as an example you will be able to analyse if they are right. Or provide your own examples with some companies which could be demonstrative to them.
    – Serg
    May 14, 2018 at 6:38

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