‘Momentum’ drives AOL to Android before iOS

Jul 22, 2010

As Android adoption passes that of iPhone, some big developers are opting to build for Android first and iPhone later.

Android activation rates are at 160,000 per day according to Google (goog) at their earnings call last week.  Those numbers look to skyrocket further with big launches of the Verizon Droid X and Samsung Galaxy lines (which passed a million alone, in its first three weeks).

That activation rate is already significantly higher than that of iPhone and nearing that of all of Apple's iOS devices combined. Apple (aapl) just had yet another blow-out quarter, largely on the back of its iPad numbers, but their iPhone sales have been flat for the past three quarters.

That fact isn't lost on AOL (Parent of tech sites like TUAW and Engadget), according to GigaOm:

I spoke yesterday by phone with David Temkin, the new VP of Mobile for AOL, and asked why the company chose Android over the iPhone. “Momentum is the key reason,” Temkin said, and I have to agree with him. Even with a record quarter of iOS4 devices, Google is on pace to have more Android activations than Apple will this year.

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Is this a new trend we'll start to see in the coming months ahead?  Design for Android first and iOS and the rest after?  It reminds me of the 'design for Windows and maybe get around to Mac and Linux version if you have the time' that's been persuasive in the desktop software industry for the past couple of decades.

Apple still has triple the amount of applications as Android counts in its store, so that trend is still a long way off.  In fact, AOL noted that some of the apps it makes are currently iOS only.

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