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Recent Posts of Mark Wilcox

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December 24, 2013
4 Reasons Not to Build Enterprise Apps

In an earlier post we showed how enterprise app developers make 4 times the revenue of those developing consumer apps on average. Targeting enterprises with apps can be very different from building consumer apps and not all developers prioritise revenue, so it’s not for everyone.

Do you want the indie developer lifestyle, or to build a company? What sort of contact do you want to have with your customers? Do you like consulting work or do you prefer to build your own products full time? Do you have a strong development platform preference? Depending on your answers to these questions you might find one of the 4 reasons below keeps you focussed on consumer apps for the foreseeable future.

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December 16, 2013
Why are you still building consumer apps? Enterprise pays 4x more!

Consumer apps are the focus for all the excitement and media attention in the industry. Enterprise software is dull and boring, right? Not if you care about making money! Besides, what’s so dreary about reinventing the way people work in a mobile and connected world?

“Wait”, I hear you cry, “what about BYOD and the consumerization of IT? Surely the future is all about selling computing tools directly to professionals?” Well the data from our last Developer Economics survey says that future isn’t here yet. In any case, if you’re going to collaborate with colleagues then you all need to be using the same tools, so most of the time the company still has to choose and buy them.

We asked developers which type of customer they primarily targeted from a selection of Consumers, Professionals, Enterprises, Other and Not Sure. Using this data we can compare the fortunes of developers serving each of those audiences.

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December 03, 2013
Device API Usage and Trends

In the early stages of new technology markets, a lot of services are created because new technology has made new ways of doing things possible. Where app developers go, apps and then users will follow. By looking at the popularity of various device APIs across platforms, we can see which developers are making the most of the capabilities their devices offer. If we then look at the device APIs that developers say the plan to adopt, we can see future trends in the app market, possibly months before the apps start to appear. Would it be wise to move against the herd, or is the trend really your friend?

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November 23, 2013
How to succeed with HTML5

Although the debate on HTML5 versus native apps seems to be favouring native apps currently, particularly in terms of user experience and performance, average developer revenues tell a very different story. Our survey data shows the mean average revenue for developers who consider HTML5 for mobile devices their primary platform is the highest of all platforms, just over twice that of the next nearest (iOS)*. However, the rewards are very unevenly shared, with the median average revenue for the same developers under half that of their iOS counterparts. Diving into the data we can see significant differences in revenue depending on how mobile apps built with web technologies are delivered to users and the categories they target. Understanding these differences could improve your chances of succeeding with HTML5.

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November 19, 2013
Are you using the right app revenue model?

The most popular revenue models appear to be those that are easiest to implement. The developers using them tend to have lower revenues. This may be due to greater competition or it might just be a result of less sophisticated app businesses producing less valuable apps. There are some interesting differences between platforms but subscriptions appear to be a relatively untapped gold mine everywhere, although maybe not for everyone.

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October 30, 2013
Is Android First Really a Myth?

Popular perception in the tech press is that iOS gets all the best apps first. With Android market share beginning to dwarf that of iOS globally, there’s lots of speculation around when developers will switch to Android first. Our data shows iOS is still the priority for startups in the U.S. but that doesn’t necessarily […]

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October 23, 2013
App Industry Picks & Shovels: How to succeed with mobile developer tools

In the great app store gold rush of the last 5 years a lot of vendors of virtual picks and shovels have set up shop, hoping to cash in on the boom regardless of which individual developers succeed in a fiercely competitive market. Having surveyed developers on their tool choices and revenues, we can see […]

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October 07, 2013
App monetisation: Games vs. Enterprise and Business Apps

The mobile apps business is maturing and while most of the media attention is still focussed on the latest app store success stories, developers are finding lots of better ways to make revenue with their apps. Considering all revenue sources, which categories of application are generating the most money and what’s the competition like on each platform?

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September 11, 2013
Accelerating Web Apps – It’s all about politics

On desktop computers web apps have come to dominate many application categories. They are easier to develop and deploy across multiple platforms and it’s possible to iterate much faster. A very large number of developers would like to be able to apply the same technologies and techniques on mobile devices but very few are able to do so successfully, particularly for mass market consumer apps. One of the most important reasons for this is performance. Resolving this issue is much more about politics than technology.

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July 24, 2013
Cross-Platform Tool Trends – Freemium & Flexible

Creating versions of an app for multiple platforms (at least iOS & Android) is an increasingly common requirement. Building and maintaining native code for every platform supported is both difficult and expensive. Cross-Platform Tools (CPTs) offer a solution to this problem by enabling sharing of code across platforms and in many cases a single code base can target multiple platforms. With such significant cost savings available, why don’t all developers use CPTs?

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