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Survey Says … - Smartphone Development

We’ve discussed Google’s Android Operating System before as it pertains to Verizon partnering with the tech giant or the system’s specific capabilities, but there’s a lot to catch up on, as is often the case with Google. There are now a ton of Droid systems already on the market, with more coming. Keep reading as we take a closer look at the state of the market.

  1. The Android Revolution
  2. Survey Says …
  3. Latest Phone to Join the Droid Ranks
  4. What’s Next for the Android OS?
By: Joe eitel
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April 13, 2010

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Those who follow tech news on a regular basis know that Google and Apple had a fairly amicable relationship and often bonded over their mutual hate of Microsoft. After all, the two companies, just ten miles apart in California’s technology empire of Silicon Valley, had little reason to be enemies; they offered very different services to their respective consumers. Around 2007, however, there were rumblings that tension was brewing between the two big hitters as a result of Google announcing its plans to develop Android for mobile phones. The rest, as they say, is history.

Fast forward to today where there is a fierce rivalry between the two wildly successful companies, some even going as far as to say that the battle between the two superstars “will shape the future of mobile computing.” Even more to the point, literally billions of dollars are up for grabs when it comes to phones, software, and services, and developers are a major driving force that helps bring in the big bucks.

Developers must choose what operating system they want to work with and develop programs, applications, and other services on which either Apple or Google are capable of making major money. According to the latest BusinessWeek cover story, the relationship is also mutually beneficial. “A company that can nail mobile ads and share the wealth with the growing legion of app developers—freelance software writers who create all those sometimes-useful (Business Card Reader), sometimes time-killing (Flick Fishing) mobile programs—could pull in the best of the lot. Create the strongest ecosystem of apps and devices, and, the thinking goes, you leave rivals gasping to keep up. Essentially, the mobile platform that creates the most ways to make money wins,” BusinessWeek writer Peter Burrows wrote.

If that’s true, it appears as if Google’s got the lead, and not just in terms of popularity and demand. Appcelerator, an open source platform for mobile apps, conducts a Mobile Developer Survey and its most recent findings show dwindling interest in the iPad as a development platform. The iPad was just released at the time of the survey. Obviously the fact that its latest, most talked about product is already losing ground is bad news for Apple, but what makes it worse is that the survey also found that interest in Google’s Android OS is not only thriving, but growing by leaps and bounds compared to last year.

According to Appcelerator, the 1,000+ developers surveyed have varying backgrounds representing iPhone, Android, PCs, Macs and Linux and back in January, 90 percent of the developers surveyed claimed to be “very interested”  in creating an iPad application within a year, but cut to the March survey and only 80 percent of respondents felt the same way.

It may not seem like a huge decrease, but when combined with the other findings from the January and March surveys, the 10 percent decrease becomes very telling.

The iPad interest may be waning because many have come to the conclusion that the iPad is nothing but a large iPhone, but according to the survey the iPhone is still top seed, with 87 percent of developers surveyed saying there are "very interested" in it as a development platform. So, why is this bad news for Apple again? Well, because Google is gaining ground -- and quickly.

According to the survey, Google's Android mobile OS has 81 percent of the developers claiming they are “very interested” in developing for the Android platform. Not only is it bad news for Apple that Google’s trailing them by a mere seven percent, but even more worrisome is the fact that the numbers jumped upwards by 13 percent in just two months.

That’s right, in January’s survey just 68 percent of developers surveyed stated that they were “very interested” in developing for Android, and two months later that percentage jumped to 81. Though the numbers have stayed pretty much the same for the iPhone, numbers for Blackberry and the Windows Phone jumped pretty significantly in the developer’s poll as well. This may suggest that despite the release of Apple’s iPad, it seems as if developers are more interested in exploring a broad spectrum of platforms, with the Android OS nearing the top of the list.

>>> More Smartphone Development Articles          >>> More By Joe eitel

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