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Developer survey offers top mobile predictions for 2013

Appcelerator and IDC reveal the results of their Q4 2012 mobile-developer survey. Apple's iOS and Android maintain their strong positions, and Google's Nexus tablets attract some developer interest.


It appears that 2013 will be the year that mobile shopping becomes pervasive. According to the just-released "Q4 2012 Developer Survey Report,"  from research firm IDC and Appcelerator, a mobile-platform developer, it's likely that most retail companies will have enabled mobile commerce in 2013. 

The survey, which encompasses the views of nearly 3,000 Appcelerator customers, predicts that 86 percent of shoppers will access a retailer's site on their mobile device while shopping in a retail store, and 71 percent of those surveyed predict the mobile wallet will "permeate" the consumer experience in 2013. Nearly 58 percent of those surveyed predicted that it is "likely to very likely" that every smartphone user will also own a tablet in 2013. The lack of Near-Field Communication (NFC)-enabled devices is not expected to adversely affect the rise of mobile commerce.

Below are other highlights from the the report:

Strong interest in iOS and Android platforms: Developer interest in the most popular platforms is mostly unchanged since Q3 2012.

Amazon Kindle struggles: Less than 22 percent of mobile developers are "very interested" in building mobile apps for the Amazon device.

Google Nexus starts strong: More than 53 percent of developers report being very interested in building apps for the device. Google taking a more direct role in Android development could help overcome some of the frustration developers have with the effects of platform fragmentation.


Microsoft Surface insufficient: Those surveyed were not impressed by the Surface hardware, and 35 percent believe Microsoft needs to do more to be successful with its Windows 8 hardware offerings.


Developers dismissive of Facebook's revamped mobile strategy: More that 62 percent of developers surveyed believe that it is "likely to very likely" that a mobile-first social startup could disrupt the market for social applications on mobile devices and take market share from Facebook.