App builders favour Android

Developers may soon be voting with their feet and abandoning iOS if an IDC/Appcelerator survey of mobile app developers is to be believed.

A September 2010 developer survey from IDC, sponsored by app builder Appcelerator finds that despite developers only having nine countries to reap profits from paid apps, and the significant updates to the Apple iOS, developers still feel that Android platform is the best choice. And the gap between those wanting to develop on Android and those developing on iOS is widening.

IDC/Appcelerator mobile developer priorities Sept2010

In the  June 2010 Appcelerator survey 54% of developers said Android had the best long-term outlook compared to iOS at 40.4%. The latest survey now has 58.6% of respondents in the survey believe Android has a better long-term outlook over iOS at 34.9%, and that’s despite the successful iPhone 4 launch and Apple’s recent announcement that it would be easing restrictions on developers.

Additionally 72% of developers say Android “is best positioned to power a large number and variety of connected devices in the future”, compared to 25% for iOS. However there’s still a lot of love for iOS out there, as Apple iOS continues to dominate in all categories relating to market/revenue opportunity and current devices. iPhone continues to lead overall developer sentiment with 91% saying they are “very interested” in developing for the device compared to 82% for Android phones.

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  2 comments for “App builders favour Android

  1. This data is actually not a true picture of the Mobile development scene.

    Appcelerator’s survey only polled developers who use Appcelerator’s Titanium cross-platform development product.

    As such, this survey does not by any means represent a cross-section of the mobile development community, but rather a small and potentially strongly biased subset.

    A previous study in July by AppStore HQ of every published iPhone, iPad and Android developer currently in the Apple App Store or Android Market demonstrated that there is only a tiny percentage of developers engaged writing software for both Android and iOS:

    iOS developers = 43,185
    Android developers = 10,199
    iOS & Android devs = 1,412

    Considering a vastly larger percentage of iOS developers use Apple’s Xcode IDE and do not develop cross-platform, Appcelerator’s results are by no means definitive of the sentiments of mobile developers as a whole and verge on useless when attempting to extrapolate the results to the wider market.

    The fact that iOS developer income is 50x greater ($1 billion) than Android Marketplace dev income ($21 million) demonstrates a vast gulf in the profitability of each platform, a fact not at all reflected in the survey results. Note that the Android Marketplace launched only 3 months after the iOS App Store.

    As such four times more developers target Apple’s iOS as compared to Android.


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