But when it comes to the development of high demand (in terms of performance) mobile apps, using native languages like Swift for iOS and Java for Android is still the way to go. This might change with Googles Flutter framework.
So you’re a young nerd programmer who is trying to decide which direction to go in when it comes to programming for mobile devices, should you learn iOS development or Android?
At this time, Android is by far the most popular mobile OS with about 70% of the market share, whereas iOS accounts for about 20%. But, I was told recently that iOS is much more common online – it seems many Android phone users don’t get a data plan?
Anyone who has read anything I’ve written (or watched my video blogs,) knows I can’t stand academics. I was particularly vocal against the early 2000’s Web Standards movement’s zealotry, wherein reality was pushed aside in favor of code purity.
These nerds would ignore reality – for example:
They would ignore how the most popular browsers where interpreting code – often times in a method contrary to their nerd wet-dreams. And they would come up with harebrained hacks to jam in their ‘compliant’ code. Hacks that eventually broke in many cases, defeating the supposed original purpose of the Web Standards movement!
They would obfuscate what the actual browser use was in terms of real people surfing the Web. They would come out with numbers that did not reflect the reality they were desperately trying to ignore: that the vast majority of people surfing the Web were using web browsers (Internet Explorer) that did not play nice with their ideas of how a web browser should read code.
As a web developer or web designer, you have to mindful of who your audience is when you are putting up a new web site or web application.
Back in the 1990’s when I started, you had to consider which web browser but you were pretty safe to assume that people would be visiting your website on a desktop computer and 95% of the time, it was Windows.
… Things have changed and will continue to change.
Check out what a well known hedge fund analyst is saying – Roger McNamee of Elevation Partners told CNBC:
The explosion of mobile platforms, particularly iOS and Android, means that Windows will account for less than 50% of all Internet-connected devices in 2011.
Now that doesn’t mean 50% of the people visiting your site will be using iOS or Android … at least not yet. But it does speak of a powerful trend that will not stop. That trend is toward smartphones, tablets and the death of the desktop. Since Windows on the smartphone and tablet is a non-starter, I think as a web application developers, we have to see Android and iOS as being the future.
What does that mean for PHP developers?
I think PHP programmers are going to have understand the new front end … the mobile device. As such, PHP’rs are really going to have to get into the client-side technologies because they have an impact how we write PHP code. I’m thinking:
– HTML 5
– CSS 3
… You better understand how these technologies work with PHP if you want a job (or contracts) as a PHP programmer.
This just out: Android Market Share Doubles, iOS Drops In Q3
Android’s share of the worldwide smartphone market was 52.3% for Q3, double what it was a year ago, according to fresh data from Gartner. Apple’s iOS dropped on a year over year basis to 15% market share for Q3.
The culprit for Apple’s drop? The iPhone 4, of course. People were waiting for the iPhone 5, or as it turned out, the iPhone 4S.
I’m no Android fan-boy and I happen to like Apple products a lot – I think the the Mac Air is the greatest computer ever made. But as a practical web designer and web programmer, you have to be mindful of what’s going on in the real world. It is clear that Android is and will be the dominate player.
So web designers and developers (programmers) have to learn HTML 5 and CSS 3 since they both run fine on Android and iOS.