SOURCE: Black Duck Software

Black Duck Software

March 16, 2010 09:04 ET

Android Wins Over Open Source Mobile Developers, Growing 3x Faster Than iPhone, According to Black Duck Software Analysis

39% Year-Over-Year Increase in Number of New OSS Projects for Mobile Platforms

WALTHAM, MA--(Marketwire - March 16, 2010) - While the world economy suffered in 2009, mobile open source projects experienced robust growth, according to an analysis by Black Duck Software that reflects the relative health of the mobile industry and growing interest in applications developed on open source software (OSS) platforms. Black Duck Software is the leading global provider of products and services for accelerating software development through the managed use of open source software. Black Duck's KnowledgeBase -- the industry's most comprehensive database of open source project information -- was used to analyze 2009 trends in mobile open source development.

Some 903 new open source projects for the mobile space were created in 2009 bringing the total to over 3,200 projects, a 39 percent increase over 2008. Black Duck attributes the steady growth to the strength of smartphone sales and the volume of open source platforms. Market research firm comScore shows an 18 percent rise in the number of smartphones in Q4 2009.

Additionally 224 new projects specifically related to Android were launched in 2009, almost three times the number targeted for the iPhone, which at 76 is the second-fastest growing platform. Windows Mobile, which like the iPhone is not based on an open-source software platform, was third with 75 new projects, reflecting the large number of Windows application developers in the market.

The iPhone, which has spurred creativity among OSS application, utility and tools developers, appears to be benefitting the Android platform as well. Projects available first on the iPhone increasingly are being ported to the Android platform. Examples include Kwaak3, a popular OSS 3D shooter game, and Jelly SMS, an OSS text messaging app, as well as NIN:access -- Nine Inch Nails' first official iPhone app -- and fBook -- an iPhone Facebook app. Although NIN:access and fBook are not OSS projects, they exemplify the iPhone-to-Android trend. Projects developed for Android also are finding their way to iPhone, e.g. the game Mystique.

Black Duck reviewed hundreds of thousands of open source projects collected from 4,600 Internet sites to compile its list of open source projects targeting mobile platforms. Among the highlights of the analysis:

--  New OSS projects for mobile totaled 3,207, a 39% increase compared to
    new projects created in 2008.
--  New projects for Android represented 25% of all new OSS mobile projects
    and exceeded the number of new projects for the next six platforms
--  Forty six percent of the new projects were for one of the major
    platforms -- Palm, iPhone, Windows Mobile, Symbian, Android,
    RIM/BlackBerry, or Maemo.
--  2009 saw an 85% increase over 2008 in the number of lines of code
    written for mobile OSS projects.

                                              New     Total OSS
                                            Projects    Mobile     Growth
OSS Projects Associated with a Platform      2009      Projects   '08-'09
-----------------------------------------  ---------- ---------- ---------
Android                                           224        357       168%
iPhone                                             76        252        43%
Windows Mobile                                     75        248        43%
Symbian                                            17        140        14%
Palm                                               10        527         2%
Maemo                                               9         27        50%
BlackBerry                                          4         39        11%
                                           ---------- ---------- ---------
     Sub Total                                    415       1590        35%
                                           ---------- ---------- ---------
Other OSS Mobile Projects                         488       1617        43%
                                           ---------- ---------- ---------
Total                                             903       3207        39%
                                           ---------- ---------- ---------

"Strong growth in open source mobile projects reflects the sustained strength of the smart phone market, and Android's accelerating growth in 2009 indicates that mobile application developers are drawn to open source platforms that have broad adoption by multiple handset manufacturers and mobile operators," said Peter Vescuso, executive vice president, marketing and business development, Black Duck Software. "Although RIM continues to dominate the smartphone market and Symbian accounts for some 49 percent of worldwide smartphone operating systems, Android's open source platform appears to be attracting more open source development among mobile application developers."

For more open source statistics, visit the Open Source Resource Center at

About Black Duck Software

Black Duck Software is the leading provider of products and services for automating the management, governance and secure use of open source software, at enterprise scale, in a multi-source development process. Black Duck™ enables companies to shorten time-to-market and reduce development costs while mitigating the management, security and compliance challenges associated with open source software. Black Duck Software powers, the industry's leading code search engine for open source, and is among the 500 largest software companies in the world, according to The company is headquartered near Boston and has offices in San Mateo, California, London, Paris, Frankfurt, and Tokyo. For more information, visit

Black Duck, Know Your Code and the Black Duck logo are registered trademarks of Black Duck Software, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions. Koders is a trademark of Black Duck Software, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

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