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While developing for iOS may pay the most and developing for Android may be the most popular, developing for Windows Phone is becoming the next hot spot for developers to make their mark, according to a study by VisionMobile.

The biggest mobile developer study in history, which tracked 6,000 respondents from 115 countries, showed that while 71 percent of mobile developers are already developing for Android, and 56 percent are already developing for iOS, 35 percent are also planning on developing for Windows Phone in the third quarter of 2013.  That’s much higher than the 28 percent that plan to develop for Blackberry 10.

Windows Phone Q3

But while more developers may be planning on developing for Windows Phone, the platform still remains in fourth place behind Android, iOS and HTML5 mobile as the preferred platform for developers.  Windows Phone, the report says, has failed to capitalize on on the huge interest that developers have shown in the platform.

“Despite extensive marketing efforts, slightly increased sales of Windows Phone devices and generous developer programs, Microsoft is still struggling to convince developers that its platform can compete head-to-head with Android or iOS, since the platform lacks in user reach, which is the most motivator for developers to invest in a platform,” VisionMobile said in the report.


Despite the strong interest in Windows Phone development (35 percent), it has fallen considerably from November 2012 (47 percent).  The study said that the drop off may be the result of new contenders BlackBerry 10 and Firefox OS, with over a quarter of developers expressing their interest in each of the those platforms.

So while Windows Phone may be the next place developers plan to develop, it still remains to be seen if anyone can break up the iOS-Android duopoly.  The study was not optimistic that anyone can do it.

“While several platforms currently appear as distant challengers to the Android-iOS duopoly,” VisionMobile said in the study.  “The economics of app ecosystems are such that any position below the top is unsustainable. The governing network effects favor the growth of the first comer platforms while inhibiting the growth of laggards.”

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