Android rules the yard, but iOS developers still rake in the cash
Does Android have to be more ruthless with charging?
If you’ve somehow managed to live under a rock for the past few
weeks, you would have missed all the latest statistics showing
Android’s continuing growth and overall strangling of its
competitors in the smartphone market.
At last week’s launch of Google Music, the head honchos weren’t
shying away from commenting on Android’s success, saying that there
200 million Android activated devices across the globe,
with an estimated 550,000 being activated every single day.
Apple are still in the picture though, having already broken the
250 million barrier for total devices. But when you take into
account the fact that Apple had a 16 month headstart, it’s clear to
see that the tide has already turned.
It’s a phenomenal adoption rate, and whilst those figures are
up for debate, it just shows how popular Android has become for
developers – offering them much greater creative opportunities than
the fairly restricted Apple counterpart. A recent Mobile Mix
survey adds further misery for iOS, showing Android holds the
majority in the connected device share.
However, a Piper
Jaffray’s study shows that Apple developers really brings
home the bacon, generating a whopping $3.4 billion compared to $240
million for Google developers Gene Munster’s research
shows that Apple gets between 80-90% of the total windfall from
mobile apps too.
Further delving into data shows that Google Android’s
marketplace has generated a measly 7% of its rival Appstore’s gross
revenue and even with Android being the smartphone of choice, Apple
will still hold 70% of mobile app dollar share in the next 3-4
years. The full data is incredibly revealing and shows that even
though Apple may well be losing out in adoption rates, they’re
certainly kings when it comes to maximising their revenue from
Even with Android catching up – in terms of apps being created
and more developers using the platform to create their applications
– it does pose a quandary for a budding mobile application
Do they choose to follow the money trail with Apple or the
flourishing community and platform of Android?
The findings do suggest that Android developers may have to be
more ruthless with charging for the products that they’ve created.
But in turn, would a price hike for an app create a downfall in
people adopting Android devices? After all they’ve built their
model on its openess and its low/free pricing and a sudden switch
could lead to a massive Android turn-off.
With Ice Cream Sandwich imminent, perhaps Android needs to show
some parity and reward its developers for their superior work. If
they don’t, developers may be green with envy at the bank balance
of their iOS counterparts.