The factor that has most influence on developers choice of mobile platform is having a large installed base of devices. Even so the latest survey sees a further decline in support for Android, with iOS still the firm favorite.
The latest Appcelerator/IDC survey of mobile developers is the largest ever, with responses from 5,526 users of the Appcelerator Titanium cross platform development environment.
Asked about their plans for the next six months, 68.9% stated that they plan to develop business applications for two or more operating systems and, when asked to rank the factors that determined their choice of platforms, put size of installed base as the top criterion followed by low cost of devices with revenue potential in third place.
This combination should put Android ahead of iOS as the preferred platform. However, interest in Android, both phone and tablet, has again shown a decline, described by the report as "disconcerting", with fewer than 66% of developers very interested in developing for the tablet platform and 76%
for the smartphone platform.
Even though iPhone and iPad also lost a few percentage points over Q2 2012, they are still dominant, with 85% of developers very interested in building apps for iOS smartphones and 83% for iPad.
At the other extreme, interest in Blackberry fell to an all-time low of 9% for the phone and 8% for the PlayBook, leading Appcelerator to ask "Will Blackberry 10 arrest the slide?"
(click in chart to enlarge)
A special focus of this survey was developers' perception of HTML5. Developers were asked to rank their satisfaction with a number of HTML5 features and the answers revealed a great deal of discontent as revealed in this graphic:
So despite the fact that HTML5 provides access to a large number of devices, developers are likely to stick with native platforms even though this causes more work.