This post was inspired by another tweet from the same day as my last post.
I’ve considered getting both into Android development and WP development several times. My main concern with both of these platforms is fragmentation. Let me go into each platform, because I don’t feel exactly the same about both.
There is obvious fragmentation in Android. I don’t think anyone will really deny that. Android 4 came out on October 19, 2011, and today (5/2/2012) most Android devices are still on Android 2.X (info from here). That’s almost 8 months.
Outside of the OS itself, my other concern is the various capabilities of the hardware. It seems like anytime some major app moves to the Android platform they mostly do a slow rollout as they fix the app for various devices.
Windows Phone does have less fragmentation due to required device specs, and that most handset makers have kept up with the updates since they can’t make custom UI’s on top of it. However, Microsoft is being very quiet about whether or not Windows Phone 8 will run on all existing devices.
So why does this fragmentation keep me going into other platform development? As a small company, there is currently no way for me reliably test on the wide range of devices both platforms offer. I’d love to be the point to where my company could actually afford testing devices for all platforms, but as of now I cannot. As I mentioned in my last post, I do not like releasing things that I have been unable to test on a device. I plan to monitor how these things and possibly change my decisions in the future based on how this fragmentation changes.