When Google first announced their social media platform Google+ it was met with mixed feelings from the internet community in general. Though it seems like Google has the Midas touch the popularity of Google+ has had an incredibly sluggish start. People are beginning to grow weary of Facebook’s constant changes and Google+ is looking to some as a better option. Professionals are also beginning to see the benefits that Google+ has over its competitors. Now app developers are getting on board and are predicting that the popularity Google+ will be growing in the near future.
With Facebook’s total of 900 million users, half of those being mobile users, Google has a lot of catching up to do. A pair of recent surveys by the companies Appcelerator and IDC found that 66% of the app developers that were surveyed believed that Google+ will catch up with Facebook at some point. When questioned why the respondents said that Google wide range of services that Google provides combined with Google run social media create a powerful networking tool.
The authors of the studies shed some light on the idea by saying, “It might be expected that Facebook would be vastly more important to social strategies [for mobile developers] than Google. However mobile app developers see the world differently, with potentially significant impacts to how social plays out in the mobile space, especially for the next billion social users.” They also went on to say that Google’s other assets like Android and search capabilities are “more important to them than Facebook’s social graph.”
While the survey showed that mobile application developers are optimistic for the future of Google+ they have begun to back away from developing for Android. The survey found that interest in developing apps for Android smartphones dropped 4.7 percent from a previous study. Interest in developing apps for Android tablets also took a slight downturn by 2.2 percent.
The authors of the surveys sited fragmentation of the Android platform as the biggest reason developers are not thrilled with Android. The fragmentation comes from the amount of Android powered devices on the market and the many manufacturers that create the devices. The numbers also speak for themselves with iPads outselling all Android tablets combined. This information is not as bad as it may seem for Android. It is still the second most popular platform to develop for. Android does not lag far behind the Apple iOS in terms of interest in development, practicing developers, and the amount of apps on the market. Though the amount of Android powered devices may make some shy away other developers and enterprise companies are beginning to see the potential of having so many devices.
As of now Google+ has not made any major jumps in popularity, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t. Mobile applications are arguably the hottest technology today and it would make sense that app developers would be more capable of predicting trends. It will truly be interesting to see the future of Google+ and how it fits into mobile application development.