Survey Report: Android And iOS Most Popular Development Platforms, But Developers Looking For Alternatives

Market strategy firm Vision Mobile just released their fourth annual survey report “Developer Economics 2013″. For the report, subtitled “Developer Tools: Foundations of the App Economy”. 3,460 developers across 95 countries were surveyed. The report contains interesting insights into developer mindshare, revenue and lead platforms. This report specifically, also focuses on developer tools, incl. ad-networks, back-end as a service, cross-platfrom tools, cross-promotion networks, user analytics, and voice services.

The full report is available free of charge here.

We would like to highlight a few of the findings regarding app distribution in the app stores.

Android continues to lead mobile developer mindshare, with 72% of developers now developing for the platform, a 4 percentage point increase compared to our 2012 survey. iOS shows a 5 percentage point drop, to 56%, in Mindshare, which we attribute mostly to the influx of Asian developers showing a clear preference towards Android. The considerable share of mobile developers intending to adopt Windows Phone (47%) and BB10 (15%) indicate that there is still developer interest in a viable third app ecosystem.

The report also gave some insights into the effect on revenue of developing for multiple platforms. 74% of developers use two or more platforms concurrently. On average mobile developers use 2.6 mobile platforms in our latest research, compared to 2.7 in 2012 and 3.2 in our 2011 research. The Android-iOS duopoly in smartphone sales is gradually creating a concentration of developers around these two platforms: 80% of respondents in our sample develop for Android, iOS or both, making them the baseline in any platform mix. Developers that do not develop for one of these two platforms generate, on average, half the revenue of those developers that do, leaving little doubt as to the concentration of power within these two major ecosystems.

  For more results from the survey, you can download the full report here.

Hendrik Koekkoek