With 82 percent of App Market, Android and iOS may have it all, but recent study shows that this is the tipping point. With other platforms entering the market, we’re going to see the beginning of end of this duopoly in next 5 years.
Over 90 percent of smartphones sold today come with either iOS, or android OS. With new mobile platforms like Firefox, Blackberry, Ubuntu, Tizen, or Windows Phone, the carpet under android and iOS duopoly is about to be swept up.
New platforms coming in the market vary in new concepts, offering a variety in solutions and usability. Blackberry 10 OS, for example, is still the safest platform for communications. It is the only OS that had been FIPS 140-2 certified to be safe for US government communications and vast majority of smartphones used by US Department Of Defense are Blackberry devices. The UI offers an entirely different way of swiping through the phone.
Windows Phone 8 OS offers Live Tiles notifying the user of all changes instantly. It has Messaging apps like other platforms, but since Microsoft owns Skype, Windows Phone has Windows Live notifications attached to messages so users see who is online and can chat with them right away. Windows Phone 8 is most likely the most user friendly and easiest to learn for beginners.
Ubuntu Linux OS is a truly open platform allowing cross-platform app compatibility. Another very flexible platform is also Linux based Tizen open source operating system. Samsung is heavily invested in this platform. It is compatible with HTML5 and other web technologies. Tizen is in fact so modifiable that eve carriers can customize it to feed special offers to customers that choose to enable it in exchange for lower rates, or freebies.
In time some of these new platforms may show promising and if some traction is achieved, we’ll see Android and iOS stepping up the game and fighting for their dominance. iOS may loosen their locked up approach to UI and offer more customizations, for example.
Most of App developers still focus on just Android and iOS, but with more popular other platforms, they may need to develop apps for them as well. This could cause rise in prices of apps as more time is spent developing apps for multiple platforms. With multiplatform HTML5 development movement all compatibility issues are to be resolved, but this may take some time.
Distribution of apps is to continue via apps stores. There are over 500 apps stores available today and more are being added daily.
The Apps business is growing at fast pace. As Canalys study shows, in Europe there were 10 percent more apps downloaded in first quarter of 2013 than last quarter of 2012. The biggest apps stores register 11 percent growth in apps downloads mostly from developing regions.