I wouldn't have called July 4th weekend as a great time for releasing studies about in-depth App Store information, but it was certainly that, as quite a few studies came to light this weekend about how the Android and the Apple App Stores compare. First up, App Store HQ has released some information from their own database of developers indicating that Apple's iPhone still has a larger developer base than the Android platform, and while some developers have gone cross platform, most prefer to stick to one or the other. Additionally, a recent survey of mobile developers shows this may all be in due course: the majority of developers prefer the iPhone for now, but in the long run, 54% of developers polled say that Android has the best "long-term outlook."
Analytics firm Distino also released a report this past weekend, about App Store offerings rather than developers, and it found that about 80% of iPad apps on the App Store were paid, with only slightly fewer for the iPhone. Google's Android market, however, has 57% of its apps listed as free, the highest percentage by far of all the mobile marketplaces tracked. That may give some indication as to why developers currently prefer the App Store -- they can make more money there, with a larger audience more ready to open the wallet. But don't count Android out -- the service is still growing (only developers from nine different countries can distribute paid apps), and as the platform becomes more viable, it seems developers will be ready to move in the future. As Appcelerator concludes, Apple's store is the current winner of developers' attention, but as soon as developers see a flexible platform with a solid userbase elsewhere, they'll happily go there. too.