There are two major platforms today for mobile app developers where they can publish their mobile apps. Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating systems from the two giants go in four out of every five smartphones. Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8 and Blackberry OS make up for the rest.
So the most important question for mobile app developers today is to decide which platform to choose for launching their apps. Will you launch on Android or iOS?
Here are a few things to consider when choosing which platform to launch your mobile app:
Market Size and Geography: Size of the market addressed by the app matters a lot. And here geography is a key factor. For example, if an app is targeted to developing world, Android has a much higher share of the market than iOS. The market share split between the two platforms is more balanced among US and European users.
Quality: The reason Apple’s iOS is the chosen destination for developers is because the ROI for developer efforts is proven and huge. app developers find the iOS quick and responsive. The platform encourages you to make your app extremely responsive with simple transitions and animations. There is less piracy and customers on iOS pay for the quality downloads as they find the applications are well designed and debugged.
On the other hand applications on Google Play have a lot of quality issues as Google does not do any quality checks before publishing applications. There also have been a lot of reports of Google suspending developers accounts without any reason. Also the developers finds it very difficult to get any answers or solutions from Google if their accounts are suspended. The whole Google developer ecosystem is highly mismanaged and chaotic. This creates a huge risk for developers who invest a lot of time and money in developing apps for Google Play.
User Engagement: iPhones are a lot better for developers in terms of finding dedicated and engaged users. iPhone users are habitual to using the best technology and expect the apps also to be without errors. Also iPhone users are better paying users and tend to invest more in paid apps as well as in app purchases.
Size of app store: Apple started the smartphone revolution and have been the pioneer of starting app store. Apple still leads in terms of number of mobile application on their store. More than 1,000,000 applications are on Apple’s App Store with users collectively downloading them more than 30 billion times. Android has caught up at a rapid pace and now Google Play Store clocks more than 700,000 applications.