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Platform and OS Difference Between US and European Mobile App Developers

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An analysis of handset software testing by DeviceAnywhere shows unsurprisingly that the majority of testing is taking place on smartphones. However, there is a strong geographical split, with Europeans significantly more likely to test on Nokia devices than Americans would.

Smartphone usage accounted for 61.3% of testing time in Q2 2010. However the overall proportion of smartphone testing time has not shifted markedly in the last 12 months, with smartphone usage at 58% of testing time in Q3 2009. The overall proportion of smartphone testing time is slightly larger than in the United States, with US developers spending 54.7% of their time on smartphones in Q2 2010.

Android testing time is on the rise. In Q2 2010, Android was the fourth most tested OS in EU market, after Symbian, BlackBerry OS and Microsoft Windows Mobile. The percent of time spent on Android devices out of total EU smartphone testing time rose from 1% in Q3 2009 to 4.9% in Q2 2010, a trend that DeviceAnywhere expects to continue as the number of Android handsets rises.

European developers show radically different priorities to US developers. Nokia devices dominate the EU market with 54.1% of total testing time in Q2 2010, compared to 7.6% of total testing time on US devices during the same time period. Likewise, Symbian devices dominate the smartphone space, with 64.2% of total EU smartphone testing time in Q2 2010. On US handsets, Symbian accounted for just 4.0% of total smartphone testing time. Other major contrasts include the focus on BlackBerry and Motorola devices. In the USA, developers spent 25.7% of overall testing time on BlackBerry devices, compared to 2.6% of time in Europe. And US developers spent 16.6% of their overall testing time on Motorola versus 4.6% in Europe.

"Because we work directly with over 10,000 application developers from every segment of the mobile ecosystem across the globe, across all handset manufacturers and operating systems, we have privileged data on the broader trends in mobile application development and testing," said Faraz Syed, CEO of DeviceAnywhere. "Following the success of the DeviceAnywhere Mobile Metrics US Report we chose to perform similar usage analysis of our European operations, hoping to provide insight into similarities and key differences into how the two markets are developing."

Syed continued: "This report has shown that there are some key differences in the development and testing trends amongst our European and US customers which appears to indicate different development strategies. While the European handset and operating system testing data is broadly aligned with overall market shares, US developers appear to be developing for emerging players with popular application stores. With that said, it will be interesting to see how the introduction of additional devices based on mobile operating systems, such as the iPad and Samsung Galaxy Tab, will have on our metrics in the future."

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