As Android handsets continue to hit the market in increasing numbers, the chasm between the iPhone and competing handsets, in terms of hardware, will inevitably start to narrow. Apple, though, views the iPhone primarily as a software platform, and while iOS 4 certainly cements Apple’s position as a mobile OS leader, there’s no denying that Android is catching up quickly. As such, the apps available for each platform will be a significant differentiating factor going forward.
With that in mind, AppStoreHQ founder Chris DeVore did a little bit of analysis to figure out how large the developer pools are behind each respective platform, in addition to determining how many developers are devoting resources to both.
Standing on top of the mountain is Apple’s iOS, with an impressive 43,185 developers (80%) compared to Android’s 10,199 (17%). Interestingly, AppStoreHQ found that there are about 1,412 developers (3%) who have released apps on both platforms.
Notably, these cross platform developers aren’t merely 19 year old kids coding away in dorm rooms looking to make some easy cash. AppStoreHQ found that hundreds of these cross-platform developers are often the subject of leading tech coverage, and include well known brands such as Gameloft, Facebook, and The New York Times.
AppStoreHQ correctly concludes that developers simply want to make money and hitting both the iOS and Android platform is a no-brainer for many. But Apple’s Ace in the Hole may very well be the size of its iOS platform which encompasses the iPhone, the iPod Touch, and the iPad. All told, iOS devices total 100 million and that may be the most important number of all.