Developer Program Membership Reaches All-Time High

Evans Data Corp Press Release, SANTA CRUZ, CA. April 23rd, 2018

The number of developers who are in a formal developer relations program reached 83%, the highest level to date, according to the Evans Data’s recently released Developer Program 2018 survey report. Rising from just under 50% in 2008, developer program memberships have been steadily climbing. Today, 38% are in a free program, 22% in a paid program and 23% are in both a free and a paid program.

“The rise of app stores and the app store economy gave a huge boost to developer programs starting about 10 years ago,” said Janel Garvin, CEO of Evans Data Corp, “Since then we’ve seen both free and paid program membership climb, but there’s more to it than app stores. Today companies from every industry are opening up APIs to share with the development community and those APIs need the support of a focused program.”

Two-thirds of developers in programs are relatively new to them, having been in their programs five years or less, while 15% have been in their programs for 2 or fewer years. Less than 5% have been in a program for 16 or more years.

The new Developer Programs 2018 survey has a margin of error of 4.5% and is exclusively focused on developers’ perceptions of and receptivity to various elements of developer programs.

The 156 page reference covers topics such as; Industry perceptions, Program membership, Participating in Communities, Developer Outreach and Social Media, Training, Technical Support, Accelerators and Incubators, APIs and SDKs, Program resources, and much more.

See the complete Table of Contents and Methodology here: Table of Contents



About Evans Data Corporation

Evans Data Corporation provides regularly updated IT industry market intelligence based on in-depth surveys of the global developer population. Evans’ syndicated research includes surveys focused on developers in a wide variety of subjects.

Copyright 2018 Evans Data Corporation. All other company names, products and services mentioned in this document are the trademarks and property of their respective owners.


Meeting Developer Demands for Your APIs

It used to be that only a very few specialized software companies cared at all about developers – and usually because they were selling programming tools or platforms. Now every company needs to be connected and to work interactively with their clients, their partners, their suppliers, and their customers and to do that they publish APIs. Evans Data’s recently released Developer Program 2017 survey report found that formalized programs have become a necessity for companies wishing to have their APIs adopted.


Developer Programs and APIs

Your developer relations program needs to have close participation and cooperation with your engineering team in order to inform, educate, and support community members for the lifetime of your APIs. Your company’s success and your program’s support of developers depends on:

  • how you prepare for the release of  the APIs,
  • the types of technical content you create to support an API,
  • how you prepare community members for the impacts of API changes,
  • and how to help your community members get ready for API deprecation and shutting down of an API.


You and other members of your company might wonder what the eventually payoff will be for all of your hard work. A recent preliminary report on “The Impact of APIs on Firm Performance” by Boston University Questrom School of Business says that “firms adopting APIs see increases in sales, net income, market capitalization, and intangible assets. API use also predicts decreases in operating costs in some specifications.API adoption leads to a 12.7 percent increase in market capitalization”.

Ten years ago less than half of all developers were in a developer program. Today more than 80% belong to one and 62% of developers say they don’t use APIs that aren’t supported by a Developer Relations program. Evans Data’s recently released Developer Program 2017 survey report found that formalized programs have become a necessity for companies wishing to have their APIs adopted.



“Today companies need to be interconnected and to take advantage new innovations. This often means they need to publish APIs and once you publish an API you have a platform. Once you have a platform you need developers, and that means you need a program to support them”, said Janel Garvin, CEO of Evans Data. “We see the proliferation of developer programs throughout all places and industries.”

The Developer Relations 2017 report is the 18th annual survey of developers focusing on developer relations programs. Topics include Developer program features, ROI and Program Measurement, Developer Outreach, Training, Spurring Participation, Resources, App Stores, Tech Support and Documentation.

View the complete Developer Relations 2017 report Table of Contents and Methodology.

What does your developer program provide to support your APIs?

Send me an email if you provide your developers with additional API information and how you handle API versioning, deprecation, and shutdown.

David I Facebook Avatar

David Intersimone “David I”
Vice President of Developer Communities
Evans Data Corporation
Skype: davidi99
Twitter: @davidi99