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Choosing a Mobile App Platform? Android for Show, iOS for Dough-2 : Page 2

For mobile app developers, the choice between Android and iOS is largely a choice between market reach and money.


iOS Is 'Money-in-Pocket' Winner

Apple recently boasted more than 600,000 applications, with more than 400 million iTunes App Store users. App Store users provide their credit card information to Apple, so they are able to purchase an application, song, movie or television show in a relatively seamless way. This has led to a huge number of iOS apps sold. Apple CEO Tim Cook, speaking at Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco in June, said the company has paid developers $5 billion from 30 billion application downloads.

On June 27, at the Google I/O Conference, Google's Hugo Barr, director of Android product management, said that 400 million Android devices are in use. Every day, he said, 1 million new Android devices are activated.

But in terms of money in the pockets of application developers, Google lags Apple. According to analytics firm App Anne, for every $1 spent on a Android application, $2.45 are spent on an iOS app.

Android for Show, iOS for Dough

So, if you are a mobile app developer who is choosing between the Android and iOS platforms and you primarily want to make money, pick iOS. If you want to get to market quickly and reach the most devices, pick Android. But the best approach is to not make the choice at all, but rather build the application for both platforms.

Keith Vance is a software engineer and a journalist. He's been developing web applications professionally since 1997 and he received his journalism degree from the University of Washington in 2008.
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