November 2016

Mobile Developer Population Forecasts 2016-2020

How many mobile developers are there, and how will their profile change?
Mobile Developer Population Forecasts 2016-2020

Developers are the engine of the app economy. In this report, we focus on that engine: we estimate its size, its distribution across geographies and platforms, as well as the goals of mobile app developers and their means to money. We derive estimates of the addressable market for technologies that are used by developers. We also use our extensive set of historical data on mobile developers to forecast the evolution of these variables into the future.

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The Android and iOS ecosystems today count over two million apps each. This is just the beginning. The mobile app economy is not the end of its run, or even close to it. Innovation in apps and in the ecosystems’ technology continues unabated. Investments, online trade, advertising spend, and (perhaps most importantly of all) attention will continue to shift to mobile devices for the foreseeable future.

Developers are the engine of the app economy. In this report, we focus on that engine: we estimate its size, its distribution across geographies and platforms, as well as the goals of mobile app developers and their means to money. We derive estimates of the addressable market for technologies that are used by developers. We also use our extensive set of historical data on mobile developers to forecast the evolution of these variables into the future.

Our estimate draws on data from over 60,000 mobile developers in 140+ countries surveyed between 2012 and 2016, as well as metadata from 1.9 million Android apps.

The Mobile Developer Population Forecasts 2016 report comes with a single user license. If you are interested in an enterprise-wide license please contact us.

  1. How many mobile developers are there in the world?
  2. Where do mobile developers come from? What’s fueling their growing number?
  3. Where are mobile developers located? Which regions are on the rise?
  4. Which platforms do they use?
  5. How will the DNA of the mobile developer population - the mix of developer segments - evolve over the coming years?
  6. Which revenue models are on the rise in the mobile developer community?
  7. How big is the addressable market for mobile developer tools and platforms?

To get a full list of this report’s contents and a sample graph, please download the brochure.

Our mobile developer population sizing estimate is rooted in the assumption that market forces will drive growth in the develop population to meet the projected growth in apps, and the need to maintain the existing ones. We combine app growth data and update rates with our robust developer survey data on effort spent on apps, app publication behavior, and platform mindshare to arrive at an estimate for developer population size and growth. We then use our survey data to derive breakdowns of the population, and to forecast their evolution.

The Developer Economics survey is conducted twice per year. As such, we have rich historical data to draw from, especially for mobile developers. The research in this report draws on data from over 60,000 mobile developers in 140+ countries, ranging from the third edition, conducted in Q2 2012, to the eleventh edition from Q2 2016.

Find out more about our methodology.

©2016 VisionMobile Ltd