When you come up with an app idea, it’s very tempting to jump right into developing it and to make it available for both iOS and Android devices from the start. But for most apps, it makes sense to concentrate on developing for one platform first and expand later.
But how to choose the right platform for launching your app? Let’s have a look at the things that can help you make the right choice.
Why you’d be better off starting with just one platform
Making your app available for users on all sorts of devices is very tempting and it makes sense in certain circumstances. For example, when you’re an enterprise with a solid customer base who use both iPhones and Android devices. But in that case the budget is usually not an issue and you are prepared to pay whatever the cost to release top quality apps. But if you are a small business or an independent developer, every pound or dollar saved matters. Besides, it’s in your best interest to concentrate on the actual development and design to build a killer app.
Take a look at some of today’s popular apps like Instagram, Camera+, and Super Mario Run – all these started as iPhone-only apps and launched for Android later. For example, it took Instagram about two years to become available for Android.
Why did it take them so long? Because Instagram wanted to create a perfect user experience on iOS and only then move on to build for a new platform.
To summarize, it’s always best to build for one platform first, create a very solid product, win loyal users and only then expand to other platforms.
Which platform to choose?
If you do a quick search online, you’ll see that most apps started as iPhone apps and then an Android version came out. But to tell you the truth, there is no universal recipe and your choice of platform largely depends on your target regions, your audience, your revenue model and a ton of other factors. Let’s have a look at some key points.
The right audience
Android phones are becoming increasingly popular because they are affordable and the choice is huge. So, if you look at the numbers, you’ll see that there are more Android users in the world than Apple users. But don’t let this information make you jump into developing for Android – take a closer look at the geography:
This map demonstrates that the English-speaking market, France, Japan and Scandinavia are dominated by iOS while the rest of the world prefers Android. Taking into account that most likely your app will be in English, you’d be better off starting developing for the iPhone because all of these countries (perhaps, except France) are comfortable using English-speaking apps.
The right revenue model
Have you thought about how your app is going to make money? If you are planning to charge for your app or offer in-app purchases, then consider launching for iOS because on average, Apple users spend 45% more than Google Play users and are 10% more likely to spend money on in-app purchases.
However, if you plan to support your app with ads, Android works just as well.
This may come as a surprise to newbie app publishers, but developing for the iOS is a lot easier and cheaper than developing for Android. One of the reasons for that is the sheer amount of different Android devices and smartphone makes your app will have to support. So, if you have a limited budget and want to get things just right (and be sure that your app works really well on all supported devices), you should start with building for the iPhone.
We hope that this article pointed you in the right direction and helped you make the right choice.