Developers less interested in Android, show more interest in iOS
According to a recent survey, Mika Mobile’s refusal from Android could suggest that developer interest in the platform is gradually fading. The Battleheart creator said it dropped Android support since the fragmentation of the platform required many hours of modifying texture formats and shaders to function on different graphics cards, in addition to other complaints.
This opinion is shared by Appcelerator, who also attributed a slip in developer interest to Android’s fragmentation, which Google apparently can’t curtail. The cool-off came despite the fact that Android is expanding and resulted from the huge variety of devices and hardware configurations that need support.
Instead, the survey revealed that about nine in every ten developers showed great interest in developing for Apple’s iPhone and iPad. To compare, Android smartphones were appealing to eight in ten developers, while only two-thirds of respondents were willing to develop for Android tablets.
A majority of the 2,200 developers surveyed were even less enthusiastic about programming for the BlackBerry platform. Less than 16% had any interest in developing for the BlackBerry OS or the QNX-based PlayBook OS, which slid from 20% it represented only three months ago.
37% of those surveyed were interested in programming for Windows Phone 7, placing it third along with Windows 8 tablets behind iOS and Android as the platform of developer choice. The Kindle Fire and Nook shared the fourth position, being attractive to 28% of developers, while HP Touch Pad scored even less than the BlackBerry, with 8% of respondents showing interest in developing for it.
On Wednesday, mobile analytics firm Flurry claimed that free and cheap games from Android and iOS devices have taken over the portable gaming market. In 2011, Apple’s and Google platforms commanded 58% of revenue together, while in 2009 70% of the portable gaming revenue was controlled solely by Nintendo DS. The information comes soon after the company reported its profits to drop for the first time since 1982, leading to the loss of $925 million over the half-year period ending in September.By Flurry’s estimate, total U.S. portable game revenue this year will reach $3.3 billion, a significant increase from $2.7 billion in 2009. But accounting for just 19% of the market in 2009, iOS and Android have tripled their share over the past two years. Meanwhile, Nintendo’s market dominance has shrunk to only 36%, with Sony’s PSP platform representing estimated 6% domestically.
The firm has analyzed data across 330 million devices, tracking 20 billion use application sessions per month, with nearly 40% of traffic coming from games. Analysts predict the installed base of Android and iOS devices to grow at unprecedented rates and reach critical mass, with the days of $25 cartridge at retail stores coming to an end.