Think iPhone App Starts Are Up Now? Wait Until March.
The land rush for iPad developers has begun in earnest. In its latest Smartphone Industry Pulse, Flurry Analytics notes that iPhone app development spiked following Apple’s (AAPL) official unveiling of the iPad.
The mobile analysis firm observed that the number of developers adding the iPhone tracking code to new projects rose from 600 in December to over 1,600 in January (see chart below; click to enlarge). Driving that threefold increase: Enthusiasm generated by Apple’s iPad event.
“Historically, Flurry has measured surges in new application starts within its system in anticipation of new device launches, including for the Motorola Droid and iPhone 3GS,” Flurry’s Peter Farago explained.
“As such,” Farago noted, “we hypothesize that excitement generated by Apple’s iPad event in January is driving this growth. For developers who get a jump on customizing their applications for the iPad, there may be an opportunity to stand out early on, and earn more downloads.”
A reasonable assumption–with an important caveat: Developers really haven’t had much time to play with the iPad software development kit, yet.
“I think this data has more to do with iPhone application growth after the holiday break than it does developers ramping up for iPad,” Raven Zachary, president of Small Society and an iPhone evangelist, told me.
“We only had access to the iPad SDK for the last five days of January,” Zachary explained. “Generally, developers don’t integrate analytics at the very beginning of a development project. February and March will be far more representative of new iPad development projects. I would expect a bump specific to iPad then.”
That said, Flurry’s metrics are certainly worth noting because they suggest that developer interest in the iPhone platform is far from hitting a plateau. This is particularly true given the prospect of building new iPad-specific applications that take advantage of the device’s increased screen real estate and that speedy little A4 chip it’s running.
[Image credit: Gizmodo/Akis Alekozidis]