Not surprisingly, Singapore companies are opting for a mobile-centric strategy, as APAC reported more than 50% smartphone penetration in the country last year. It stated that the average smartphone user in Singapore had around 40 apps installed on their smartphone at a time. Most of these applications belong to the category of social networks, since 64% of the population is active on social networks according to We Are Social in 2016. The other great attraction is games, since the Annie application showed that the Top ranked in the Apple store is Minecraft, Clash Royale, Monopoly, Mobilestrike and of course the latest sensation, Uber.
Since the dawn of the mobile app era, users have been dragged in two main directions: Android or iOS. Windows is still a popular operating system, but it’s obviously no longer in the running for the top spot. There are several other operating systems, which are employed by small segments of mobile application users. However, they do not occupy key positions in the mobile application market.
Apple’s position in Singapore
Apple has a lot of credibility both among its peers and among consumers. It has a very focused marketing strategy that is clearly displayed in the iOS apps. Apple is in a class of its own and the entire competition knows it. It has a strong presence throughout Asia, especially Singapore, as the city is a thriving tech hub. Many of them are based here and work as freelancers for companies in the West that they outsource. App users are used to the best and gravitate towards iOS devices for that reason. The Next Web revealed that the country had the highest number of iOS devices by population in recent years.
Google as seen in Singapore
Android is a completely different story. Google’s marketing strategy differs a lot from Apple’s. These tech giants appear to be moving their brands in completely opposite directions. They don’t have the same goals, and as I’ll explain, their target audience isn’t exactly the same. Most Asian economies are third world countries, which is why most smartphone users turn to Android.
There are a few key factors that determine the current situation for Android and iOS apps in Singapore.
App development is a business like any other, it runs on money. If you visit an app store, you will notice that the main downloads are free. Everyone loves free stuff and Singapore users are no different. The age of the smartphone has greatly increased the expectations of users. With UX in the spotlight, app developers in Singapore have stepped up their game. Obviously, a lot goes into creating an app, so companies are reluctant to release it as free. Some great monetization strategies have been introduced, like in-app marketing. Currently, many companies offer free apps with premium plans that have advanced paid features.
This tactic works for most Android apps on the Google Play Store, but iOS apps don’t follow the same path. Apple users tend to be loyal and don’t mind paying for high-quality apps. They are used to paid apps. Many iOS apps have various pricing packages depending on the level of features you want to use. The trend towards free apps with premium plans is on the rise, as App Annie shows that the paid ones are mostly games like Minecraft on iOS.
Economy and budget
When you have a brand like Apple, you know that you are getting your money’s worth. As iOS devices are very popular, application developers tend to prioritize this operating system. Of course, another factor comes into play here. The applications aim to provide an excellent user experience and ease of use, so the application developer will need to take into account the user’s preferences. If your target audience consists mostly of the top, you can blindly decide to go for a native iOS app. It’s no secret that Apple’s devices and software are quite expensive compared to Android. Those who can afford them invariably opt for iPhones, iPads, and other Apple devices.
Most of the Asian population cannot afford to buy and maintain iPhones, so Android is the best option for them. It is not a loss because Google has a lot of variety of devices and is constantly updating its operating systems. There is something for everyone as you can find affordable and luxury smartphones among Android devices. If a business is trying to reach a wider audience, Android apps can really boost its profits.
Application development plan
You will discover native, hybrid and cross-platform applications, but the native ones are the most preferred as they provide a flawless user experience. Native app developers are in high demand in Singapore and are paid quite well too. Android application development becomes relatively complex if you need to compile them for multiple versions. It also takes longer this way. Although iOS applications do not present the same problems, they are more expensive to develop.