Fragmentation in the Mobile App Market
Last week we discussed some surprising results that were found in the Q1 2012 Appcelerator/IDC Mobile Developer Report: Seventy-nine percent of mobile developers reported they will integrate HTML5 in their apps this year. According to Fierce Developer author, Jason Ankeny, that’s significantly higher than many industry observers anticipated even as recently as late 2011.
Ankeny recently wrote an article about developers giving up on Android. The Q1 Appcelerator/IDC report found that only 78.6 percent of developers expressed interest in building apps for Google, down from 87 percent a year ago. According to Ankeny, the reason for this isn’t that people aren’t buying Android devices, it’s that there is an increasing amount of fragmentation in the mobile app market.
There’s also the argument that iPads have continued to outsell all the various Android tablets combined swaying developers towards iOS. Approximately 88 percent of the developers surveyed expressed interest in building iPad apps and 89 percent expressed interest in building iPhone apps. Interest in other platforms was much less; Windows Phone 7 remains at 37 percent and Research in Motion (Blackberry) continues to decrease with only 15.5 percent of the developers surveyed expressing interest.
On the world stage of the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show, Google’s Chairman Eric Schmidt asserted that Android is all about differentiation, not fragmentation. He stated: “Differentiation means that you have a choice and the people who are making the phones, they’re going to compete on their view of innovation, and they’re going to try and convince you that theirs is better than somebody else.” Naturally, he opined that, “Differentiation is positive, fragmentation is negative.” (via Forbes)
What platforms do you plan to develop for this year? Has fragmentation within mobile app market influenced this choice? We look forward to your comments (below).