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25/01/2011 by

Why Android Might Beat iOS in 2011?

A recent joint-study from the International Data Corporation (IDC) and Appcelerator showed that app developers more and more tend to change their preferences in platforms.  Not much later Forbes published an (unrelated) question-and-answer session between developers and Google’s Android platform manager Eric Chu. It is at least as interesting as the study outcomes.

Want to know more about the definitly interesting key outcomes of the IDC/Appcelerator study and Chu’s opinion on the Android platform itself? ViralBlog combined both for you!

The report

IDC and Appcelerator held their survey among 2,200 app developers among the world. Their focus was Smartphones and tablets. Additionally the report gave insights on the planned behavior of businesses towards their mobile strategies as well.

The ups

But first, let’s bring it back to the developers. To give an idea, to the question, “Which platform gains your interest mostly, when planning on developing an app?” the outcome  for iPad was 84% where the Android tablet scored 62% during Q4 2010. Now in Q1 2011 the outcomes are 87% and 74% respectively, that’s iPad +3% and Android tablet +12%. Blackberry should not be excluded here. Their Playbook gained 12% as well, but with  a score of 28% they still have a large gap to cover.

In the field of Smartphones Android gained 5% in preference, coming to 87% for this quarter, which is equal to the iPad. The iPhone nevertheless still tops it all with 92%, but fair enough that’s just 5% more that Android.

The downs

So now we just had some impressive figures about the rising stars. What about the falling stars? As the report shows, the eagerness to build mobile apps for Connected TV’s nose dived.  For both Google TV and Apple iTV the common interest plummeted with around 10%.

That’s the effect of developers setting sails towards mobile and tablets in 2011. Another cause for this decrease is the fact that many television networks simply block the access to their content and therefore are decreasing the attractiveness of Connected TV.

Exploring and Acceleration

There are other signs of the intensifying development of apps. Most respondents (44%) said they were in the ‘exploration’ phase of their mobile strategy. A simple app or two – typically on iPhone – and a focus on free brand-affinity apps was standard practice. This year, 55% of respondents said they are now shifting into the ‘acceleration’ phase. On average, each respondent said they plan to develop 6.5 apps this year, up 183% over last year.

This means that we can expect a true explosion on both fronts, especially when we take the developers preferences for both iPhone and Android in consideration.

The report goes much further than this. It pinpoints also some interesting trends for 2011. For instance, the importance and focus on Cloud Connectivity:

“Last year, 64% of businesses said that they connected their applications to the cloud. This year, that number jumps to 87%. Even more interesting is that this increase is not limited to either the private cloud (eg: backend web services) or public cloud (eg: Facebook, Flickr, eg: YouTube), but both private and public cloud services.”

The whole report, which definitely should get your attention, can be found  on

We sure can conclude that from the developers perspective Android is going to be airborne in 2011 and ready to get heads up with iOS. 

Google’s Eric Chu

So all good news on camp Android, you suppose. But on the contrary, according to Forbes, Google’s Android platform manager Eric Chu is not satisfied with the number of Android Apps sold. He acknowledges the fact that Android’s popularity is rising in fast pace, but that doesn’t hold him of being a not so happy man, yet. With the outcomes of the IDC/Appcelerator report, Chu might get his wish this year.

To stimulate the sales of Android apps, Chu has the following plans:

  • In-app payments system
  • Carrier billing
  • Improve user discovery of apps in Market
  • Getting social
  • HTML5

Some of these improvements, like the in-app payments, is aleardy general practice for Apple. Nevertheless, with HTML5 Google is betting on the new Web standard for creating its apps. The whole  Q&A session with Chu during the Inside Social Apps conference in San Francisco, can be found on Forbes.

We can be pretty sure that Google Android and app developers are up for a real interesting movement in the domain of Smartphones and tablets. But what about the end-users. There are probably readers with their (new) iPhone 4 or iPad and readers which have an Android phone. Or, of course, readers with none of the above.

Are you planning to swap sides, or to join one in the first place? Share it with us!


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