Mobile Developer News Roundup: Appcelerator/IDC Survey of Mobile Devs, 5 Reasons Why Responsive Design Isn’t Worth It, and Android Can Be Beautiful

by Joey deVilla on September 25, 2012

Results from Appcelerator’s and IDC’s Mobile Developer Survey

In the Seattle Times’ column Microsoft Pri0, Janet Tu points to the latest quarterly survey report of over 5,500 mobile developers conducted by Appcelerator and IDC. Among their findings:

  • The developers surveyed were disappointed with building HTML5 mobile apps, citing poor user experience, performance and monetization.
  • One third of the developers surveyed said they were “very interested” in developing for Windows 8. The interest comes from the promise of being able to write applications that would work on both the desktop and on the soon-to-come Surface tablets.
  • Fewer than 10% of the developers surveyed said they were “very interested” in developing for BlackBerry. In January 2011, this number was 40%.
  • The developers surveyed believed that by 2015, they’ll be writing apps for more than just phones and tablets, but all manner of devices: TVs, connected cars, game consoles, smartwatches, Google glasses and so on.


5 Reasons Why Responsive Design Isn’t Worth It

In 5 Reasons Why Responsive Design is Not Worth It, Tom Ewer argues that in many circumstances, there’s no need for a web site to be responsive since the desktop version works just fine. The five reasons mentioned in his article’s title are:

  1. It defeats user expectation, since the site can look quite different on a mobile device, hiding UI elements that the user might expect.
  2. It costs more and takes longer. This one’s self-explanatory.
  3. Non-responsive designs usually work. In many cases, all you have to do is rotate your phone to landscape mode.
  4. There is often no load time benefit. I don’t even consider this one of the benefits of responsive design, but some people do.
  5. It’s a compromise. “It is a subjective decision by the designer that the desktop display will not be optimal on mobile devices, followed up by a subjective decision as to what will be.”

Android Niceties Shows That Android Apps Can Be Beautiful

Android Niceties is a Tumblr that showcases “screenshots encompassing some of the best, most beautiful looking Android apps”. If you’re an Android developer or designer, you’ll want to visit this site often for inspiration.

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