The Android smartphone platform months ago won the war vs. Apple's iPhone, dwarfing it in market share. And people download more apps on the Android platform than Apple's iOS.
So why do software developers who create apps continue launching them on iOS first -- months or years before making them available to Android users?
As Apple prepares to welcome developers to its 25th
Android phones have an 80.2% market share, according to researcher IDC, compared with just 14.8% for Apple.
But consumers spend more time with iOS apps and are more likely to opt for in-app purchases, developers say.
"There's a fundamental difference between the way people consume apps on both platforms," says
App discovery, he says, "is different on the different platforms." It's easier for new apps to be discovered in the iTunes app store than on Google Play, he says.
Research firm App Annie says that
"The bulk of new activity, it seems, is moving onto Android. But the value of the user is still higher on iOS," says
App developers have had a great year since the last conference.
More than 120 billion iOS and Android apps have been downloaded to date by consumers, a roster that includes smash hits such as
"Although Android is bigger, and getting bigger, there is something sexy about iOS," he says. "Whether it's
Apple's iOS still has a huge advantage over Android in that there is only one phone size to be concerned about, with a uniform screen.
There are hundreds of different Android phones. "Developers just want to get their product out there, and it's easier to go iOS first," Huie says.
Apple could throw off developers with a new screen size for the next iPhone, which isn't likely to be announced at this week's conference. That would require the company to redesign its apps.
Meanwhile, what new features are developers looking for from Apple?
For Cohen, it's back to the basics: He wants to see Apple "get a little bit of their mojo back" and show off some really cool, innovative new stuff.
"I'd like to see them finally get into … things that are going to attract buzz and get people lined up outside
Huie said he hopes Apple embraces the wearable trend, which Samsung has been exploiting with its Galaxy S models. The Galaxy 5S has a built-in heart-rate monitor, and Galaxy Gear smartwatches connect to the phone for a variety of functions.
If last year was about wearable fitness trackers, and sensors that connect via Bluetooth to your device, "Now I want to actually see that in the device," Huie says.
Meanwhile, are people getting tired of apps? Have we hit app fatigue?
And what will come of the iOS vs. Android market share battles?
With Android eclipsing iOS in market share year after year, developers know that eventually, Android will catch up monetarily.
"I would imagine that we're going to see a report any day that basically shows that Android spending is now eclipsing iOS," says
Most Popular Stories
- Illinois Issues Fracking Rules
- Americans Still Pessimistic Despite Economic Growth
- Detroit Muslim Conference Stirs Controversy
- Canada, Russia Go to War (on Twitter)
- Echeveste Steps Down, Perez Steps Up at VPE
- Startups Offer Smartphone Banking Apps
- Hip-Hop Takes Up Ferguson Cause
- 'Longmire' Cancelled, Looks for New Network
- Clippers Deal Started With 2 Numbers
- Immigration Delay Throws Both Parties a Curve