Android v. iOS Part 4: Developers

on August 30, 2012
Reading Time: 2 minutes

RECAP

We’ve learned that Android dominates market share, but that it doesn’t seem to matter much. iOS has most of the profit share. And it turns out that developer share, not market share, is what makes a platform strong.

DEVELOPERS DEVELOP FOR IOS FIRST AND ANDROID SECOND, IF EVER

— Developers develop for iOS first. (Source and Source)

— There are seven iOS apps for every three Android apps. (Source)

— AppStoreHQ estimates there are over 43 thousand Apple iOS developers and 10 thousand Android developers. (Source)

— iOS has far greater developer mindshare: 89 per cent iPhone, iPad at 88 per cent, Android phones 78.6 per cent, Android tablets 65.9 per cent (Appcelerator). (Source)

— Android developer interest may be dwindling rather than growing. (Source)

ATTRACTING DEVELOPERS

Why does the iOS platform attract more developers than the Android platform? After looking at all of the evidence (below), the better question might be: “Why do developers develop for Android at all?” Android may have most of the market share, but that market share hasn’t translated into dollars for developers. The iOS platform is so far superior to the Android platform that it isn’t even close.

I can’t say it plainer than this. The reason Android’s massive market share numbers have not translated into mobile operating system domination is because Android is a terribly weak platform.

IOS DEVELOPERS GET PAID MORE. ANDROID DEVELOPERS GET PAID LESS

— 5.5 billion paid to iOS developers. (Source: Apple Q2 2012 earnings call.) Android? Not even a quarter as much. (Source)

— Asymco estimates that Android developers made $210M in all of 2011, compared to the $700M pocketed by Apple iOS developers in the Q4 2011. (Source)

— “Distimo, a mobile consulting firm, estimates that the Apple App store generates $5.4M/day for the 200 top-grossing apps while Google generates just $679K for their top-200 grossing apps. That is almost a 8:1 revenue ratio.” (Source)

— iOS overall developer revenue is six times greater than Android developer revenue (Distimo) (Source)

— More of Apple’s apps generate revenue, while most of Google apps are free: 67% of apps on Apple are paid for versus 34% on Google. (Source)

— For the very same app, Flurry Analytics estimates that a developer will earn $1.00 on the Apple iOS version compared to $0.24 for the Google Android version. (Source)

IOS CUSTOMERS BUY MORE AND PAY MORE. ANDROID CUSTOMERS PAY FOR LITTLE AND ARE WORTH LITTLE IN ADVERTISING REVENUE

— iOS has 30 billion downloads. (Source)

— iOS users vastly outspend Android users on apps, respond much better to adds. (Source)

— The Apple user demographic is more affluent, an earlier adopter and more loyal than other brands. (Source)

MOUNTAINS OF MISCELLANEOUS EVIDENCE

— iOS App retention crushing Android. (Source)

— iOS dominates mobile ad impressions. (Source)

— Apple iPhone gamers spend five times more than Android gamers. (Source) 84 per cent of mobile gaming revenue captured by iOS (NewZoo) (Source)

— Apple’s iOS takes 65% mobile browser share, Android at 20%. (Source)

— 90 per cent of e-commerce revenue comes from iOS devices (Rich Relevance). (Source)

— Android in enterprises ‘severely limited’ by weak management support from Google. (Source)

— iOS has six of top 10 enterprise mobile devices (Source)

— Android is failing to get into businesses as iPhone and iPad do. (Source)

— Apple nabs 70 percent of global tablet market. Android? Not so much. (Source)

— Apple iPad Accounts for 94.64% of all Tablet Web Traffic. (Source)

— 97.3 per cent of business tablet activations are iPad (Good Technologies) (Source)

SUMMING UP

Wow, ‘Nuff said? Apple has a strong platform. Android has a weak platform. And I haven’t even touched on the inherent weaknesses in Android’s platform yet. It’s not even debatable (although I’m sure that I’ll get some debates on it anyhow.)

Tomorrow we look at whether Android can fix its platform or whether its problems are inherent and intractable.

Coming Tomorrow: Android v. iOS Part 5: Android Is A Two-Legged Stool

Android v. iOS Part 1: Market Share
Android v. iOS Part 2: Profits
Android v. iOS Part 3: Network Effect