Flurry: Seven out of every 10 apps are developed for Apple's iOS


Sixty-nine percent of new application development projects initiated during the first quarter of 2012 targeted Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS platform, according to new data issued by app store research firm Flurry.

Although iOS continues to dominate developer mindshare, Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android continues to make inroads. Thirty-one percent of new project starts in the first quarter targeted Android--by comparison, as recently as the third quarter of 2011, 75 percent of new app builds started by Flurry developers were written for iOS, with only 25 percent focusing on Android.

"Among the reasons iOS appears more attractive to developers is the dominance by Apple in the tablet category," writes Flurry Vice President of Marketing Peter Farago on the firm's blog. "Not only does Apple offer a large, homogenous smartphone base for which to build software, but also when developers build for smartphones, their apps run on Apple's iPad tablets as well. That's like getting two platforms for the price of one. Apple offers the most compelling 'build once, run anywhere' value proposition in the market today, delivering maximum consumer reach to developers reach for minimal cost."

flurry chart

The chart above illustrates that Apple continues to garner more support from developers.

To illustrate the point, Flurry reports that among the top three tablets worldwide, the iPad drives 88 percent of user sessions, followed by Amazon's Kindle Fire at 9 percent and Samsung's Galaxy Tab at 3 percent. Flurry also notes that 70 percent of Android devices run version 3.0 (a.k.a. Gingerbread), which is only the third newest version of the OS; successors Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich combine to power just 11 percent of Android units. 

"Opposite to the efficiency Apple offers developers through their homogenous device base, Android fragmentation appears to be increasing, driving up complexity and cost for developers," Farago states. "Further, this fragmentation is concentrated primarily in just smartphones, as there is no serious Android tablet contender to the iPad." 

Based on a comparison of bestselling apps on both iOS and Android, Flurry calculates that iOS installs drive four times greater revenues than Android, consistent with similar findings in the fourth quarter of 2011 and the first quarter of 2012. "At the end of the day, developers run businesses, and businesses seek out markets where revenue opportunities are highest and the cost of building and distributing is lowest," Farago concludes. "In short, Android delivers less gain and more pain than iOS."

For more:
- read this Flurry Blog entry

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