Android wins devs' hearts and minds
Survey says: iPhone goes down in 2011
Mobile-app developers are gearing up for an Android push next year, with the rise of Google's mobile operating system likely to push iPhone app-development activity into second place behind the Mountain View juggernaut.
According to a survey released Thursday by mobile-ad firm Millennial Media, developed in conjuntion with the tech folks at Digiday and an analyst from Stifel Nicolaus, the iPhone accounts for 30 per cent of development effort in 2010, with Android accounting for 23 per cent.
The iPhone remains the number-one platform of choice among developers — for now, at least
When asked about their plans for 2011, however, developers said that 29 per cent of their new-platform efforts would be devoted to Android devices, versus only 8 per cent for the iPhone.
Of course, since the iPhone already holds a lead in developers, its developer growth would naturally be lower than that of Android. But still, such a large disparity indicates that next year may see Android overtaking iPhone in the battle to win the hearts and minds of the all-important developer cadre.
Windows Phone 7 accounting for 20 per cent of new dev activity? Hmm... We'll see
Apple shouldn't worry too much, though: the iPad will be embraced by 20 per cent more devs next year. iOS won't suffer a developer-defection hemorrhage, it appears.
Of particular interest among Millennial Media's figures is that Windows Phone 7 ranks equally with the iPad in the "What new platforms are you going to embrace?" race. Apparently Redmond is having some success in enticing devs with promises of riches and glory.
Optimism, thy name is 'mobile-app developer'
And, speaking of riches, mobile devs see their futures as rosy, indeed. A full 31 per cent of those surveyed expect their revenues to increase by 100 per cent or more, and none of the survey respondents saw their revenue decreasing — although 2 per cent said it'd be flat.
There is, apparently, no economic distress in the land of mobile apps. ®
Millennial Media describes themselves as providing "mobile decisioning, serving and mediation platforms" to advertisers, publishers, developers, and mobile operators.
Planned for though, surely?
Apple can't have thought they'd be ahead forever, given that their sales are up 95% year-on-year, they're unable to meet demand and they're still less than 4% of the total mobile phone market. Is it possible that the iPhone is here to stay but more like the Mac (ie, a highly profitable niche) rather than an iPod (ie, the dominant player)? Or maybe Apple are just focussed purely on new products from now on? Launch the iPhone, dominate the market for four years, launch the iPad, hopefully dominate that market for a few more years, etc?
Android has done incredibly well, especially given the logistics involved, and Google should be applauded. The OS may not be as open as some people would like (in the sense of being able to contribute to it, being able to put it on any device with all the Google apps and the marketplace) but it's easy to fork if Google ever become an actual problem.
RE: Jeff 11
"So of course there's going to be more *new-platform* development on Android because it's just about capable of running stuff that's been on the iPhone for 2 years"
You present a very biased argument Fanboy as many Androids have superior hardware to even the new iphone 4, including my X10.
Besides that, the majority of androids are cheaper than the iphone and so will catch a massive market for people who don't want to waste that much on a phone, don't like apple or don't want a smartphone or contract phone.
Like most people over 30 for example, still a huge market.
Like the those at h/p who thought that Woz's computer would never catch on, the execs at Xerox in the '70s who gave away the modern GUI to Woz and Jobs, and the agents who turned down acts like the Beatles, if you think the Android is not going to be hugely successful then you are mistaken.
With any tablet or mobile device the hardware part has been easy to do for a couple of years now, what was missing was the software to run it and the leadership to make it in the right form-factor and promote it. Kudos to Mr. Jobs and Company on that score. As is the norm for him he didn't follow the herd and make his tablet yet another laptop with a rotating screen and stylus. He made it a tablet, more in the vein of Star-Trek meets Minority Report... and the world instinctively knew it was "right".
Now that the masses know what they want (the form-factor), as long as the losers (and Apple is not among them) don't screw it up, the iOS devices and Android devices will compete and the world will have products that just keep improving. I do not think Apple and Google, unlike another company which enjoyed zero competition, will rest on their laurels, .
As it is now the Android UX is very good, even if some apps don't make good use of it. Couple that with a greater opportunity to create for the Android platform (you don't need to buy a Mac to develop for it) and you have a huge talent base on which to draw. This is going to be fun!