Report: Android-related Projects Far Outpace iOS Projects

by Ostatic Staff - May. 23, 2013

The creation of new Android-related open source projects picked up in a big way in 2012, radically outpacing new iOS projects, according to data released by Black Duck Software. Black Duck manages and secures implementations of open source software, and has large samples of real-world data on open source software in use and in development. Its latest study shows that new Android mobile projects outstripped iOS projects by a factor of four in 2012, expanding by at least 96 percent in each year since 2007. New iOS project growth, by comparison, was 32 percent from 2011 to 2012.

The analysis of open source mobile project data pulled from the Black Duck KnowledgeBase, a repository of data containing about one million open source projects, and, the public directory of free and open source software, looked at the growth of mobile open source projects over a five-year period beginning in 2007.

According to Black Duck's findings:

"Over 15, 000 new Android mobile projects were launched in 2012, bringing the total number of Android projects in the KnowledgeBase to more than 28,000. New projects associated with the iOS platform numbered nearly 2,500 in 2012, with a cumulative total of more than 7,000 projects. All other mobile platforms accounted for fewer than 500 new projects in 2012, for a total of fewer than 2,000 projects over the 2007 - 2012 period."

"As the growth of open source has continued to evolve and shape attitudes towards the commercial value of software, it has begun to fundamentally alter a variety of software markets," said Stephen O'Grady, Principal Analyst with RedMonk, in a statement. "Black Duck's data on mobile OSS growth is yet more evidence of this."

As we've noted, among handset makers, Samsung continues to be the big winner as developers and users continue to flock to Android. We've also reported on the fact that developers have more economic incentives to develop for the iPhone.

Still, Android development is clearly running at a very healthy clip and the ecosystem of applications for Android is at critical mass. That news is even good for iOS users, because the more competition there is among app developers, the better things turn out for all mobile users.