Since it launched in 2007, Apple’s iPhone has been the “hip” phone, the cool kid on the block. In contrast, when the first Android smartphones were released in 2008, it was considered to be buggy and generally not as smooth as Apple’s devices. IOS, the system by which the iPhone works on was seen as the easier to use, more stable of the two, and Android was initially slow taking off.
However, things began to change in recent years. Android has pumped itself up to a solid OS, with several updates and new versions being launched which have increased the platform’s usability and functionality. With its latest platform Jelly Bean, Google has reached a watershed moment. For the first time in its existence, Android is being touted as being just as user friendly as iOS, and the software offers many features that Apple’s product cannot touch.
The numbers aren’t insignificant either, folks. Android devices now outnumber iPhones sold, as Android holds 52% of all smartphone sales in the first quarter of 2013. Apple iPhones accounted for 39% of phones sold.
With the growing Android market and the fact that more and more users are seeing it as the preferred method for their smartphones and tablets, one thing should be blatantly obvious to gambling software developers:
Their primary focus needs to be on making their software Android friendly.
Now, we aren’t saying that Apple should be left out in the cold here, but we are saying that it is foolish for operators to think that the iPhone will be the primary type of device being used to play casino games on their phones.
The simple fact of the matter is that Android devices have different strengths that developers can play to in lieu of assets that an iPhone brings to the table. Frankly speaking, you are dealing with two different animals when developing for the two different systems. In the past, that led to iPhones getting the development preference, as they had the bigger market share.
Now though, those numbers have changed, and with the large amount of quality phones hitting the market, you can bet that Android development is likely to be streamlined into a more simplified process.
Previously, Android phones were segmented by what the phones could actually run. Some were not capable of running advanced pieces of software, and the market suffered for it. With the new advanced devices, we are seeing greater processors, and RAM sizes that will allow for greater leeway when providers create software on the platform.
If developers are going to make shift development strategies, what can we as Android owners expect to see?
If you are expecting Flash support, you will not see it. Flash is resource heavy, and frankly not a very efficient way of delivering content on a mobile device. The drain on batteries and memory creates a bigger variance gap in terms of the variety of phones offered. Furthermore, Adobe has announced that they are abandoning the format, making HTML5 the format of choice for developers.
Another thing that will be needed for Android support is different screen sizes, as the multitude of smartphones, have screen sizes ranging from roughly 4 to 5 inches. These bigger screen sizes will come to our benefit, however, as layouts for games can be optimized to take advantage of the extra real estate.
Despite the great amount of differences between the ways that the development of apps on each of the platform, there really is a bit of common ground between the two systems. While we think that apps can and should be ported to both devices, we think that the days of the iPhone dominated market are over, and that developers should take a look at porting their apps with an “Android First” mentality.
Where do you stand on this? Do you think Android should be the primary platform that developers should target when creating mobile software? Should the platform with the majority of users get their software first? Let us know where you stand in the comments section below.