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In a must-read post for the tech industry, Twitter experience designer and serial startup creator Paul Stamatiou composes: ‘Android is Better.’ His op-ed acts as something of a wake-up call for the market, where designers developing the next generation of mobile applications still heavily choose the iPhone, not just as their personal smartphone of option, but also as the launch platform for their most recent creations.

Many who’ve actually currently observed Android’s siren song discovered themselves nodding along to almost every point Stamatiou made, ranging from the small details, like how Android manages notifications, to wider statements about Android’s ‘magical user experience,’ which includes the use of a global back button, Google Now integration and Android intents for app-to-app interoperability and interaction. While obviously a viewpoint piece, Stamatiou’s ideas discovered as reasoned and well-argued, and did not at all resemble the fanboy-ish op-eds frequently published to incite religious wars between the iPhone and Android zealots for website quality traffic’s sake.

Most Tech Business Are Still iOS-First

Having just recently made the switch from the iPhone 5 to the Nexus 4 and then back to the iPhone 5 myself, the pro-Android argument struck a personal chord. It’s at least the third time I’ve actually attempted to leave the iPhone. For all the same reasons, I too had actually found myself again falling for the Android operating system. However there’s something that keeps pulling me back to iPhone: the apps.

As an early adopter, and innovation enthusiast in general – a state of mind TechCrunch readers probably share – being solely on Android can be a discouraging experience. Today’s tech business are still launching their mobile applications on iOS first. This consists of apps from the tiniest of startups to some of the largest, like Twitter, which introduced its video-sharing app Vine along with Twitter Music on iPhone first (the latter of which isn’t yet on Android, four months after its launching).

facebook-here-come-the-androids-1The iOS-first mentality is so ingrained in the culture of the tech and startup scene, in reality, that Facebook had as soon as plastered large indications around its workplaces begging employees to switch over to Android. Later, the business released its own take on what Android individuals allegedly desire with ‘Facebook House,’ an Android launcher that rapidly tanked. Had Facebookers comprehended the true principles of Android, they’d have maybe recognized that Android individuals prefer the modification and personalization elements of the platform. On the other hand, Facebook Home was a full-on takeover of the entire Android interface and experience, with little wiggle space to alter much of anything about its habits.

If you review Android’s top graphes, you’ll discover they are continuously filled with apps that let users fine-tune, personalize, and much better manage their Android gadgets. For example, in July of this year, the leading five paid Android apps included a keyboard replacement (Swiftkey) in the No. 1 position, a relatively geeky energy for users who’d rooted their phones (Titanium Backup) in the No. 2 position, and an alternative launcher (Nova) as No. 4, according to analytics firm Distimo.

Top 5 Paid Apps-July 2013-Google Play-Distimo

The consistent tweaking and customizing is fun, however eventually, it becomes simply an additional way to kill time while waiting for the current and biggest brand-new application to make its method to Android. You know – eventually.

This isn’t the tale you’ll learn through headstrong Android devotees who point to the high number of Android apps available today. Naturally, it’s true that the Apple and Android app retail stores are about close in terms of the varieties of applications offered, and have been for time. There are over 900,000 iOS applications, while experts approximated as of Might there are over 800,000 Android apps available. It’s not that there are not enough Android apps out there. There just are not the brand-new ones early adopters may want – those from start-ups you may check out right here on TechCrunch, for instance. Those nearly invariably go iOS-first.

It’s difficult to even think of tech business that introduced on Android initially in current months, but there are a couple of. Any. DO, a mobile job list app was on Android before iPhone, mobile messenger Invi wager on Android, too. Imgur launched on Android prior to iPhone, but just due to the fact that it needed to clean itself up a bit, in order to be approved for circulation from iTunes. And Zillow, with what feels like an uncomfortable nod to the demographics of Android individuals, launched its Rentals app on Android first last fall. (These are off the top of my head. I asked on Twitter, and a few responses trickled in, consisting of Smoopa and … um, does Google Now count?)

To be clear, there are certainly numerous, many Android applications that are not on iOS, but this is generally the result of developers benefiting from the Android platform in means that Apple wouldn’t permit. This includes the tweakers and customizers, however likewise the suite of Google apps that are better baked into Android, such as Google Now. (On iPhone, ‘Now’ is more like an attribute within the Google app – a standalone experience.)

iOS Apps Still Missing out on An Android Counterpart

Ignoring games or children’s apps, which are also too frequently iOS-only, I’d a look at my iPhone to see exactly what apps I’d need to give up to make the switch to Android today. As it ends up, there are still numerous. Below’s a short list of iOS-only apps broken down by category:

Contacts: Brewster, Cobook, LinkedIn’s Contacts, LinkedIn’s CardMunch (though relatively deserted), Addappt

Work Tools: Younity, FindIt, Chartbeat, a few AngelList apps like aWings, Simplr (however Angie replaces)

Messaging: Rithm, Hubble, Tweekaboo, Blink, Talkz, Facebook Poke

Music: Twitter Music, Musicplayr, Band of the Day, Splyce

News: Digg (quickly!), Circa, Thirst, Prismatic, Reeder, Ruby (Reddit), Antenna (information clips)

Social: Tweetbot, Potluck, Slim

Smart Assistants/Stuff: IFTTT, Buffer, Cal, Sunup, Tempo, Cue, Donna, Fantastical, Winston, Dollarbird, Dark Sky (smart weather condition)

Family: Moonfrye, Disney’s Story

Photos: Tumblr’s Photoset, Cluster, Albumatic, Everpix, Photoful, Facebook Camera, Pic Stitch, Pic Lab, Camera Plus, Genuinely Ink, Simple Prints, Mosaic, Oggl, Loom, Stilly, Groupshot

Entertainment: Telecast, Yidio, Fan, Pal TV, Mixbit, Calendo, Weotta

TV Channels: NBC, Bravo Go, (Maximum Go incompatible), UNITED STATE app, ABC Household (Kindle only), Disney Network, Disney HD, Disney Junior

Shopping: Larky, Arro, ModCloth, Decide, Boomerang, Poshmark, Threadflip, Earmark, Svpply’s Want, Wantworthy’s Fresh, Polyvore, Truly’s Sesame

Dining: Ness, Drync, Meal. fm, HealthyOut

I can live without most of them, sure, however a couple are uncomfortable to give up. A caution below is that the list includes business that have already guaranteed Android is in their future. It likewise includes some widely known iOS-only publishers who’ll likely never ever come to Android. However an excellent piece of it consists of the tech companies who, with limited resources, just decided to pick iOS first.

Why Apple? Revenue. Development. (And Everyone Else Is Doing It.)

There are a variety of reasons for that option, naturally. Tech companies are typically lacking in in-house Android proficiency, or are influenced by the truth that they and everyone they understand makes use of an iPhone. Plus, according to Vision Mobile’s latest report, 44 percent of even more experienced developers (3-5 years experience) select iOS, while 31 percent pick Android. These are the individuals building start-ups.

Companies likewise like to state that many of their users prefer iOS gadgets, mentioning mobile web data. This appears to be true – iPhone users invest more minutes on their gadgets than Android users.

But most notably, there’s the revenue situation. Apple’s App Shop still makes about double that of Google Play. (Depending on who you ask, it could be two times or as high as 2.6 times.).

Android’s Time Is Coming?

That being stated, Google Play’s income capabilities are expanding, having climbed up by 67 percent in the previous six months, per Distimo’s quotes. At some point, as Android market share grows (Android now leads by a wide margin, beyond the UNITED STATE), the revenue possibilities could start to shift in favor of Android. The big install base will begin to matter. And it’s much easier to reach the leading 250 on Android than on iOS.


The startups that ‘make it’ to Android will have acquired developers with the chops to code for the platform, and perhaps one day, they’ll take those abilities to a startup of their own. Today, 40 percent of new developers pick Android, and just 21 percent pick iOS. Simply puts, there’s still the capacity for the market to alter.

And there’s some sign that Android users are famished for fantastic apps. A year after Instagram showed up on Android, for instance, half of its individuals originated from that platform.

In late 2011, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt when announced that a wave of Android-first apps was on the near horizon. Over a year and a half later, that has not happened yet. That’s not to state it never ever will. Today’s hoping.