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For many developers, the debate rages on: Android or Apple? No doubt, Android has more than twice as many global users as Apple.

There are only slightly (a few percent) more overall app downloads for Android than Apple, meaning that Apple users download just under twice as many apps per user than do Android. With Android’s significantly larger user base, again, larger by a factor of 2, the two platforms have roughly the same number of downloads.

But the question at the end of the day remains – which platform is more profitable for developers?

Chart: Apple pays 5x more to developers than Android


Apple’s iOS brings developers 5x more revenue per download than Android.

Five times! Given that the two platforms have similar figures on raw number of app downloads, again, with Android edging out Apple by a few percent on app downloads (though nowhere near a factor of 2, which is the factor by which Android device owners outnumber Apple device owners), this leaves us with the conclusion that Apple developers literally make 5x the revenue than do Android developers.

Not even a close contest, in the category of fiduciary developer incentive.

Profit Sent to Investors & Shareholders

Chart: Samsung squeezes out more net profit than Apple, after costs

Samsung has trailed Apple on profitability, but in 2013, this has changed – Samsung has made more, after costs, than Apple, in 2013. This may interest securities analysts, but what does this mean for developers? Very little. By far, Apple remains the dominant platform for developer payouts. Perhaps it’s because Apple rewards their developers so handsomely, that their profits have begun to narrowly trail Samsung in 2013.

However, the final quarter of each year has been hugely profitable for Apple, and there’s no reason to think that Q4 2013 will be any different.

From an investor standpoint, it’s mostly a wash, and Samsung and Apple remain roughly tied, in terms of profitability.

From a developer standpoint, there’s really no comparison – Apple and iOS remains more generous to app creators than Android by a factor of 5.

Via Apple’s iOS brings developers 5x more revenue per download than Android

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