There is a steady increase in the number of smartphone users and commensurately there is an equal increase in the number of app developers for the same. Though there is a plethora of mobile platforms, developers invariably select one of the two most rampantly used platforms – Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android. Smartphones have brought mobile gaming to everyone and mobile gaming is turning out to be a huge money spinning business.
Developers are choosing to predominantly work on the iOS and Android platforms. The research study conducted by the well-known magazine Game Developer reveals that nearly 94% of the developers are working on or has games for iOS.
A further analysis show that only 30.7% of developers were building for iOS 5, with 39.4% targeting iOS 4.1+, 16.5% developing for 4.0+, and 13.4% developing for version 3.0+. So, the plain truth is iOS is not as unified a platform as Apple might claim or make us believe.
Android expectedly ranks second with 70.7% of developers working on this platform. One reason for Android lagging behind may be because the app revenue would be lower with Android or it may a matter of less aggressive marketing. There can be no doubt that Apple markets its products lot more vigorously than Android, and Apple also has a better brand recognition among casual users.
As is known to many, Android OS principally uses Java, which is, in fact, the common programming language used by developers. Hence, developing Android becomes simpler for most game developers.
The iPhone OS, on the other hand, uses Apple’s Objective-C language. This being more exclusive is a dampener for most developers who are not too comfortable or proficient in other programming languages. It is common knowledge that Android users are lot more cautious in spending than iOS users. The fact also remains that games sometimes fail to work consistently on one phone or another.
Whether your platform choice is Android or iOS, there are plenty of worthwhile choices out there. But the latest news is there is effectively one less choice on Android because Mika Mobile is withdrawing from Google’s Play Store. This can be sad news for many Android game developers. The principal issue was presumably the varying nature of Android hardware. Mika Mobile admittedly had to spend considerable time and money getting development devices and creating updates to get the game’s shaders to render correctly on multiple Android phones.
As the smart phone app market is exponentially growing, there is an expanding market that requires more graphically sophisticated applications and games.
The Android OS is very versatile and can be of great help to game developers. But this very multitasking ability of the Android OS very often creates problems for the less knowledgeable Android developer. This, combined with Android’s highly fragmented platform, makes things intimidating to the Android developer.
In contrast, Apple presents a more stable, exclusive platform for app developers, clearly specifying tools and their potential and limits. This makes it much easier for the iOS game developers to proceed with the task.
Labels : Mobile Game Development.
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