I went to the MassMobile - Mobile Developers Meetup, organized by Localytics, yesterday. There was a very lively discussion, with participants sharing stories of what worked, what didn’t, and what they are trying now. Here are my key takeaways / quick summary of the meet up:
- Ice Cream Sandwich is not in anyone’s radar right now. Almost everyone is still thinking about 2.2 and 2.3. (Except maybe Google, which seems to be looking ahead. Looks Like Android 5.0 aka jellybean is coming up soon)
- There were not a lot of real-life pain points around Fragmentation (yet?!). There wasn’t anyone that had to resort to device specific builds or anything funky like that.
- Almost everyone is still developing native apps over HTML5 sites. A couple of folks had gone down the path of HTML5 before deciding to go native largely due to poor user experience on HTML 5.
- There was a lot of interest on the so-called “Hybrid apps”. A few people had prototyped using frameworks such as jQuery Mobile, PhoneGap, but nothing in the market yet.
- There were not a lot of folks developing for Multiple platforms (such as Android and iOS).
- There was a lot of discussion on how developing for Android would be different than developing for iOS. Three key themes emerged:
- Actual coding is roughly the same between the two platforms.
- Android has higher demands for testing, due to the varied types of devices and configuration.
- Android has slightly higher UX cost, given the different screen resolutions.
- Windows 7 is still < 5% of the total market share. Apparently, the developer tools are great and development is really easy. Hopefully there will soon be people that actually use it, so we can build some apps for it.
Thanks to Raj and the Localytics team for making it useful and informative.