The battle between Android and iOS has been raging ever since Google released the Android operating system in 2007. Up until now Apple has held the top spot for app development, but that may all be changing this year. A new survey conducted by Ovum, a research firm, reports that developers may be switching their loyalty toward the Android Market. One of the leading factors in this projection is the sheer number of Android devices that are being manufactured.
While the evidence is fairly sound it is still hard to believe that developers will leave the security blanket of Apple. Still these are just predictions and Ovum is staying realistic with their finds. Ovum stated, “Despite a clear vie for ultimate supremacy between these two platforms, almost all developers will support both.”
Ovum also believes that the native SDKs for both Apple and Android applications will continue to be more popular than HTML 5. Ovum sited the main reason for this is that monetization and a larger audience is still easiest reached with the native SDKs. Application developers’ two main concerns are distribution and discovery. Web based applications have yet to be proficient at this and there is no clear cut timeline to when they will be able to catch up with their native counterparts. Third party app stores like Amazon’s app store have garnered some popularity making it easier to get an app discovered, but they are yet to do substantial numbers like the App Store and Android Market have.
Adam Leach from Ovum said, “A smartphone platform’s success is dictated not only by the pull of consumers and the push of handset vendors and mobile operators but also by a healthy economy of applications delivered by third-party developers.” He went on to elaborate, “It is important for all players in the smartphone ecosystem to understand the choices developers are making today and the downstream impact of those choices.” This will most likely help to weed out developers who may not have the right training and tools to compete in the global market.
It is no secret that as of right now the iOS is still the number one revenue generator among platforms. One of the key factors in the belief that Android may overtake Apple is Android’s push to standardize app development. The hope is that standardizing app development will make purchasing apps and in-app payments perform better.
It is hard to predict which platform will create the best prospects for developers in the future. The truth is that Apple and Google will most likely always be neck and neck when it comes to their operating systems. Both companies have had their triumphs and tribulations helping them to jump ahead or causing them to fall behind. Other key factors that may affect these mobile giants in the future are the turbulent BlackBerry forecast and the rise of the Windows mobile phone. In the end it is up to experienced IT developers to choose which platform they believe will suit the individual needs of their clients best.