Growth of NetBeans
By Roman Strobl on V 15, 2007
According to the BZ Media survey from December 2006 NetBeans adoption grew by 5.4% from 2005 to 2006 and NetBeans moved from the third place to the second place in the Java IDE usage. NetBeans keeps growing and while there is \*a lot\* of catching up to move to the first place, it is indeed a positive trend. Who would believe this would happen three years ago, when NetBeans was considered to be an outsider!
One of the areas where NetBeans is shining and outperforming the competition is mobility. David Berlind posted a poll on his blog and it's nice to see that NetBeans is winning the poll in the IDE preference for mobile Java applications.
As I blogged before, for us the best measure of NetBeans growth is the number of active users. It is in my opinion more accurrate than any survey - it is never possible to have a perfect sample of surveyed developers from all around the world. We can't track all users this way (e.g. we shipped 120.000+ CDs to places with bad or no internet connectivity - these users are definitely not always online and many people are behind restrictive proxies, disable update functionality, etc. - we can't track them). But the graph shows us the relative growth of users who continuosly connect to the update center - developers who stop using the IDE are not included in this graph because we start counting from zero every month. So for those who are curious, here are the most recent numbers. Note that the number went up from 185.839 in Feb 2006 when my previous stats-related blog entry was written to 307.793 in Apr 2007.
This is of course not the total number of active users who use NetBeans-based IDE's - if you add other Sun IDEs the measure goes over 400.000 active users. It will be interesting to see what will happen after release of NetBeans 6.0, which seems to be a big milestone in the history of NetBeans. Based on the feedback I heard so far I have no doubts that the growth is going to continue.