February 12, 2010 | by Andrew Kameka
Android and iPhone are competitors locked in a mirror image when it comes to app development. As one rises, the other falls; as one falls, the other rises, according to data reported by Flurry Analytics.
Charting the course of new apps registered with Flurry, the analytics firm found that apps on Android and iPhone have an inverse relationship. While the company points out that Android apps had steady growth in 2009, in comparison to iPhone, there’s a noticeable decrease in new Android apps whenever iPhone apps surge. There’s also a noticeable uptick in new Android apps when iPhone development falls.
The up and down levels are likely because of the launch of new devices. The level of Android apps jumped in December, likely because of the Droid launch and ADC2. Meanwhile, that level decreased in January while the level of iPhone apps jumped significantly in the run-up to the iPad announcement.
It’s important to reiterate that there’s an overall growth of Android apps. However, the chart indicates that there’s a definite link between that growth rate and the iPhone. It has been suggested in the past that limited resources force small companies and independent developers to do a cost-benefit analysis of which platforms to support. The Android Developer’s Contest and big ticket items like the Hero, Droid, and Nexus Onehave helped encourage development.
I strongly believe that the iPhone OS will always command more attention from developers, especially if the iPad proves successful, but it’s interesting to see that there are ways to divert attention to Android at times. Let’s hope that the rising number of users switching to Android makes the bottom half of that chart rise.