Android Tablet Catching up to iPad
In a manner similar to its growth in the smartphone arena,
Google's mobile OS, Android, is gaining ground quickly on Apple's iOS, which powers the iPhone and iPad
Appcelerator, a mobile platform
and services company, along with analyst firm IDC, found that 74 percent of
developers in its most
recent survey were "very interested" in developing for the
Android tablet. That's a 12-point spike since Sept. 2010, four times the
three-point gain made by iPad, which increased from
84 percent to 87 percent in the same period. So although iPad
still maintains a lead, developers are quickly jumping on board the Android
The jump is reminiscent of the huge
advances in popularity Android-powered smartphones
have experienced over the past year. In fact, the latest
data from Internet measurement company comScore,
from last November, shows that Android smartphones
have eclipsed the iPhone in popularity, moving ahead by a point.
Apple may have taken a large step toward reversing that
trend with its recent announcement
that it was opening up its vendor pool to include Verizon Wireless, the largest
carrier in the U.S., next month. Many analysts have said that Apple’s exclusive
deal with AT&T has suppressed phone sales since the release of the first
Whether or not that happens, Apple has to be concerned about
the eerily familiar path the Android tablet is taking in terms of competing
with its industry-leading product -- in this case, tablet computers.
There’s also good news in the survey for RIM, which makes
the BlackBerry smartphone and Playbook tablet. Although BlackBerry is a distant
third in developer interest, it nearly doubled its previous figure, going from
16 percent to 28 percent.
Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Visual Studio Magazine.