I’ve just attended a webinar given by Evans Data on software development trends in emerging markets such as India, China and Brazil. Not many surprises, but still interesting. Here’s a quick summary:
- The emerging market developers are much younger – a median age of 29 versus 41 in the rest of the world (ROW).
- The developer population is growing faster in emerging markets – 25% per annum versus 9%.
- Educational attainment is similar in emerging markets vs ROW – developers tend to be highly educated.
- Developing for cloud computing and SOA is somewhat stronger in emerging markets than ROW
There are mixed signals when it comes to use of Microsoft technologies. On the one hand, we were told that Microsoft is strong, and a sign of that is that more emerging market developers are signed up to a paid developer program (presumably MSDN) than in the ROW. On the other hand, there’s more open source adoption in emerging markets: 74% vs 65% ROW.
Programming language trends are hard to nail, because emerging market developers tend to have multi-language skills. 60% of emerging market developers use Java, for example, vs 45% in ROW; but 48% use C#, vs 38% in ROW. The emerging market developers are ahead in every category here, despite (or because of) their younger age.
When it comes to host operating systems, Windows XP predominates in both groups. There’s less Mac in emerging markets: the number 5 OS is Windows 7, whereas it is OS X in ROW. The others are Vista, Linux, and Windows 2003.
What I’m not sure about (but would like to know) is how many of the developers surveyed in emerging markets were working for their own market, and how many for international customers.
My own observation is that aside from the remarkable age difference, the two groups are more similar than I would have guessed.