Google Challenges Facebook for Mobile Developer Attention

Mobile application development platform Appcelerator recently teamed up with the International Data Corporation (IDC) to analyze the social mobile application landscape, and their results show that Google is poised to give Facebook a run for its mobile money.

After surveying nearly 2173 Appcelerator application developers across the globe, the surveyors found that most of them have a rapidly growing interest in social mobile. These developers also feel that Google will be the key to implementing their social strategies over the next year because of the company's "broad range of assets," including Android, Gmail, Google+ and YouTube, among many others.

Google's various offerings make the company an important figure in the social mobile world because of their closely linked integration with one another; 39 percent of the developer's questioned said these Google assets are actually more important to their upcoming social mobile development than Facebook's social graph. Overall, though, developers reported that they don't feel like they have the proper knowledge or tools to take full advantage of social in their application strategies.

"This translates into a big competitive opportunity for Google - and potential significant risk for Facebook - especially because developers perceive Google as innovating faster than Facebook," says IDC's VP of Mobile & Connected Consumer Platforms Scott Ellison.

Unfortunately, it's not all great news for Google. The survey also reveals that Android is seeing waning interest from developers because of its continued fragmentation, effectively propelling iOS much further ahead in terms of developer attention.

Meanwhile, HTML5 appears to be moving to the center stage with both pure mobile browser apps and hybrid apps, making it a new challenger to the long dominant native apps that have pretty much always ruled the mobile development arena.