The web page load times were about a second apart for the two devices in a study that amassed 45,000 load tests in all. For Android 2.3 on the Google Nexus S smartphone using a version of Chrome, the median load time was 2.144 seconds, compared to 3.254 seconds for iPhone 4 on iOS 4.3 running a version of Safari, according to the study.
Blaze used Fortune 1,000 websites for the tests, running the web page loading tests repeatedly over Wi-Fi and 3G wireless connections with nothing else running on the phones at the time. The Android phone was faster than the iPhone in loading 84 percent of the tested websites. "Android wasn't just faster overall, but rather provided a faster browsing experience four times out of five," the study said.
Blaze was keen to describe its tests as objective; David Horne, marketing programs manager for Blaze, stated that the firm has no association with Google or Apple "in any form". Blaze writes software to automatically accelerate website speeds and created a mobile testing tool used in the Android-iPhone study to be able to analyse mobile web performance and to "discover new optimisation to add to our core product," Horne explained.
The study's authors said they were surprised by the results.
Other testing groups have only compared a small set of sites manually, Blaze said.
Additionally, of the 1,000 sites tested, 175 were customised for mobile access. The iPhone improved the time to load a mobile website by 39 percent over other standard websites, while Android improved the difference in the two types of sites by 8 percent. Still, Android loaded both types faster than the iPhone 4.