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Is it true? There are a few articles on the Internet that say so and I've personally heard it from some people around me.

If this is really so, then what would be the main cause of this ?

Sources :

MOBILE iOS Developers Make More Money, But Android's Volume Is Closing The Gap

iOS Developers Still Make More Than Android Devs

Why developers STILL prefer iOS over Android

  • Can you clarify: Do you mean companies developing software make more money from creating iOS than Android software, or do you mean individual software developers get higher salaries working as iOS developers compared to Android developers? – gnasher729 Feb 14 '16 at 17:09
  • @gnasher729 Well by this question I meant individual developers.Especially indie and freelancing developers. – Haider Feb 15 '16 at 18:53
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    This is partly because the language that iOs uses Objective C is known by fewer developers than than the language that android uses (java). There are less objective c developers than there is demand so they make a little more. – Mark Rogers Feb 18 '16 at 23:07
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    It's also significantly harder to get into iOS programming than Android: you need a Mac and an expensive phone for a start. You can get started on Android almost for free. I would guess that lower barrier to entry means greater supply of devs. – Mark Smith Feb 23 '16 at 11:09
  • @MarkSmith: You need a PC and an Android phone for Android development. Maybe iOS developers are better at maths... – gnasher729 Mar 20 '16 at 21:57
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Stack Overflow conducted a survey of developers. Among the questions on that survey were compensation (by ranges) and main technologies used in the past year (with Android and iOS among the listed choices).

This is self-reported, but I don't see a reason to lie that would cause a significant bias. What could cause a bias is exposure, as participation in the survey is surely correlated with having at least heard of Stack Overflow. There are about 540k questions tagged [ios] or [iphone] and about 810k questions tagged [android] which is in the same ballpark; certainly no case can be made that one community uses Stack Overflow and the other one doesn't. I don't see a reason to suppose that e.g. better-paid iOS developers would be more likely to answering the survey than less well-paid developers in a greater proportion than Android developers.

The 2016 survey report has a section on “Top Paying Tech per Occupation” which states that

Mobile Developers who know the iOS ecosystem seem to earn about $10,000 more on average than Android Developers.

This does not match the data presented as a graph. Analysis error or editing error? Unfortunately the raw data is not present to double-check, but the 2015 survey had similar questions and the raw data is available. So I summed up the 2015 data.

Over all respondents, here's the number of respondents who mentioned Android as a technology used in the past year and the average of the midpoints of the compensation bracket that they reported (e.g. if a respondent picked “$60,000 - $80,000” then the number used in the average is 70000), and the same figures for iOS:

Tech    count salary
Android 4112  30501
iOS     1957  43317

Respondents from the United States:

Android  587  63101
iOS      442  72964

Respondents from India:

Android  455  10638
iOS      140  12000

Respondents from the United Kingdom:

Android  299  45452
iOS      151  58212

Respondents from Germany:

Android  319  28589
iOS      146  36507

Respondents from Poland:

Android  130  12846
iOS       41  19512

So according to this data, yes, iOS developers do earn more than Android developers. This holds to a varying degree even at the level of individual countries (I showed the figures for the 5 most represented countries) so it isn't just a matter of iOS developers working in countries with higher salaries.

Could there be a bias in the survey? Maybe. I wrote above that I didn't think that there was a bias in the probability of responding to the survey, but there might be a bias in listing technologies. For example, it could be that more hobbyists work on Android in addition to their day job and included “Android” as one of their main, and they're less well-paid than the professionals who work on iOS for their day job. This could be due to the higher cost of becoming an iOS developer (you need a Mac and an iPhone, whereas it's possible to do Android development on any reasonably recent PC — for a US developer the cost isn't that much, but for an Indian developer it's a couple of months' salary). I don't know whether this explanation holds any water, or assuming it does how significant it is. I thought of checking whether Android developers were more prone to listing other technologies than iOS developers, but it turns out that almost all respondents who answered listed multiple technologies, and I didn't analyze this aspect further.

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Base salary as an Apple IOS software engineer is $118K , vs Google Android software engineers at $97K. So Apple pays more base salary. It's unclear if that includes any fringe benefits or stock options.

  • Welcome to Skeptics! You make it sounds like there is an official base salary. Can you elaborate some more on how this web-site knows this information? Note: This web-site gives different answers to different regions at different times, so please quote what you see and where you are reading it from. – Oddthinking Feb 19 '16 at 0:39
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    More useful would be to compare the salaries of iOS and Android developers at the same company. – Marq Feb 20 '16 at 11:00
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    -1: you're comparing salaries in Apple's HQ with Google salaries in "all cities". If in case of Google you restrict that to Google's HQ, you get average total compensation of $131K. Also, it fails to be a comparison of salaries of iOS vs Android dev, instead you have comparison of Apple's salaries vs Google's salaries. Which is not the question here. – vartec Mar 23 '16 at 1:01
  • That's a fair point, but the question was ambiguous as to whether the iOS/Android developers need be at the same company. It was simply asking for a comparison of salaries. Went with the Apple/Google HQ's since it seemed to be the logical place to find an answer. – EMAW2008 Mar 30 '16 at 14:40

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