Coding wars: iOS vs Android vs Windows Phone 7

In an interesting competition recently held at the Budapest New tech Meetup, developers from three platforms--iOS, Android and WP7--had a "live coding event" (hey, nerds have to have their fun too).

The goal was simple: they had 1.5 hours to write " app that allows users to rate presentations at a meetup". The coders had no knowledge in advance of the project and it had to "display the names of the presenters, the title of the presentations, some summary and of course, find a way to actually do the rating."

The gist of the competition is that the Windows Phone 7 trounced everyone. Whereas the iOS and Android groups had created one page of the app, the WP7 team created "...a mostly working application with most features implemented". In addition, the Androiders had problems with Compiz (a Linux window manager), which kept crashing.

Overall an interesting story and although real-world developers don't have these constraints, the fact that the WP7 group was able to write a full app so quickly, without even writing any code (they used Expression Blend’s Sample Data feature i.e. mostly drag and drop) is pretty impressive. See previous "coding war" coverage here and here.

Source: DotNeteers

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • i would love to develop an app for wp7 with all my great ideas if only i knew how lol!!!
  • w00t, used the l33t h4xx0r skillz to put the 'win' in 'WinPho7.' [/nerdgasm] :-B
  • This is 100% in line with what I would expect. I'm a 12-year professional developer having worked in Java, C#, and ActionScript/Flex/Flash. Silverlight is essentially a Flex clone. After 9 years of primarily doing Java development and being a huge Java fan I was blown away by how utterly in tune Flex was with the demands of user interface programming. This was in 2007. In looking at the Silverlight/WP7 API it seems to have many of the same features (e.g. bi-directional databinding) as Flex and I look forward to exploring it more. Given equal developer skill, the ease of implementation by API would be WP7/Silverlight, Android/Java, iOS/Objective-C. If you look at how computer languages have developed in the last 10 years you'll find that the order of this list also reflects the latest thoughts in rapid application development. It's really too bad that Steve Jobs has made a career of foisting NEXT technologies (aka ObjC) on Apple. If Apple were not so bent on locking developers in to Mac/ObjC they would realize that they could leverage the Adobe Flex technology (better than Silverlight imo)to have exactly the same kind of RAD capability that WP7 does with Silverlight. There's not (yet) any real advantage to WP7 over the other smart phones, but ease of development is a definite win for WP7 platform.
  • Let me get this straight. You have three teams (implies more than one person) and they only had to present title, description, and the ability to rate? That's it? Then 1.5 hours later, nobody finished? Despite my many criticisms of WP7, I'm extremely surprised that they didn't finish. Mostly working is not "working." It's also a bit subjective since it sounds like the WP7 guys didn't even really code anything. I mean, I get that, that's the point of this post, but still in development, the most amount of time is spent on filling in the shell of the design and the fine touches afterward. Design itself, while Expression is Teh Awesome, is not the bulk of the application building project time even with lesser tools. I think WP7 is generally more RAD ready than Android, but Android's UI design tools aren't too shabby, so I would have thought they would have been able to finish too (with WP7 winning though). IOS not finishing would not surprise me because Objective-C is absolutely awful in all respects. Still, a nice development environment is meaningless to the end consumer... and they are the ones buying the devices.
  • I wouldn't say it's meaningless to the consumer, not indirectly anyway, because, to many consumers, apps make the phone. Apple knew it, which is why they brag about it, and Google/Motorola/Verizon acknowledged it, which is why they entered the pissing contest with some of the commercials. If more non-zealous developers see a better development environment, they might be a little more compelled to port or maybe even transition over to WP7.
  • i wish we could have the best of this 3 mobile os, just like this concept, the combination of ios, wp7 and android: