Android’s App Development Enthusiasm Falling Behind OS Market Share

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Android may have the largest smartphone OS market share, but that doesn’t seem to be translating to enthusiasm in app developers. Apple’s iOS still has more apps available than the Android platform and the pace of Android app development seems to be falling behind, according to data from Flurry Analytics.

Android, in Apple's Shadow

Bloomberg Businessweek reported on the data gathered by Flurry, a company dealing in mobile application development, analytics and advertising. That data indicated that developers made approximately one new Android app for every three iOS apps during January.

That’s down from last year, when there were two Android apps created for every three iOS apps. And while this data comes from developers (55,000+) using Flurry’s own tools, it is backed up by other research that indicates interest in developing for Android has dropped off while it has remained steady for the iOS platform.

“Developers can make more money on iOS,” said Peter Farago, vice president of marketing at Flurry. Apps can be developed more quickly for iOS and it’s simpler to market and sell them through Apple’s App Store. 

Apple currently has more than 550,000 apps in the App Store, while there are 400,000 in the Google Android Market. There are as many as 90 places where Android apps are sold compared to the single App Store.

The sheer number of Android devices and versions of the operating system itself has become difficult for developers to manage, as well. They are not able to test their apps on every device and often devices have different specs for things such as accelerometers, responsiveness, and pre-installed apps. A single device can mean months of work in adapting an app to work on it, and it seems that Android owners are less inclined to purchase apps than their iOS counterparts.

However, Android market share can not be ignored and the number of Android apps has increased tremendously over the past year. As Ken Murphy, vice president of GameHouse, maker of apps such as Doodle Jump and NCIS the Game, put it, “in the short term, there’s a lot of money in iOS. In the long term, we are very bullish on Android.”

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4 Comments

Lee Dronick

The sheer number of Android devices and versions of the operating system itself has become difficult for developers to manage, as well. They are not able to test their apps on every device and often devices have different specs for things such as accelerometers, responsiveness, and pre-installed apps. A single device can mean months of work in adapting an app to work on it, and it seems that Android owners are less inclined to purchase apps than their iOS counterparts.

Sounds like the old days of Windows v Macs

paikinho

Seems like at 400k apps Android based devices are doing just fine. If someone has a really great app, they will port it to whatever device they can to sell more of it.

It doesn’t sound like Android devices are suffering from a lack of choice in Apps.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

A single device can mean months of work in adapting an app to work on it,

Yeah, if you’re a moron. In the past two months, I have seen several developers (self included) “port” their Android phone and tablet apps to the WIMM One watch. That is as extreme as it gets right now in Android space, since a 1 inch (160x160) screen actually requires rethinking what your app is all about. Some pretty impressive “ports” have come with a day or two work. The variation in phone screen sizes is much, much simpler to deal with.

RonMacGuy

The sheer number of Android devices and versions of the operating system itself has become difficult for developers to manage, as well. They are not able to test their apps on every device and often devices have different specs for things such as accelerometers, responsiveness, and pre-installed apps.

CURSE THAT ANDROID FRAGMENTATION!!  CURSE IT!!

grin  And it’s getting worse!!  I love it!!

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