Australia's Tech Sector Outperforms US and UK with App Development Generating Billions

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By Reissa Su | August 1, 2014 9:09 PM EST

Australia's technology sector has outperformed the United States and the UK.

According to reports, the country's "app economy" has grown in the last six years, including the number in jobs in computer systems design, programming and software development.

Reuters
An illustration picture shows application icons on an Apple Ipad tablet held by a woman in Bordeaux, Southwestern France, February 4, 2013.

Tech sector jobs have increased by 38 per cent since 2008 when the smartphone changed the world of mobile phones.

Unlike in Australia, technology-related jobs in the U.S. grew by as much as 22.2 per cent, while the UK recorded a 10.1 per cent increase.

Progressive Policy Institute's report author Dr Michael Mandel said he was impressed by the findings and thought it was a "big surprise." The report, Jobs in the Australian App Economy, was presented in Sydney on July 31.

According to Mandel, part of Australia's tech sector growth may have come from a country "catching up." Data showed that technology sector jobs make up 1.6 per cent of Australia's overall employment compared to 1.2 per cent in the United States.

Mandel said Australia's tech sector continues to grow and absorb new technologies at a faster pace. He praised Australia for performing well in the "app economy" which is made up of app developers including marketing and human resources related to app development.

The report found that about 9.4 per cent or 140,000 technology-related jobs in Australia are associated with app development. The country has more tech workers involved in app development than the U.S. and the UK with only 8.4 per cent and 7.6 per cent respectively.

Mandel believes the growth of app development in a country is usually a sign of how other sectors in the economy are utilising the benefits of the technology industry.

The existence of Apple's App Store has resulted in more than 70,000 jobs for Australians. Apple Inc said it is "proud" of its contribution to the Australian economy including the presence of 21 retail stores and 2,750 people working for Apple directly.

Aside from Apple's iOS app development opportunities, Google's Android OS was also credited for Australia's growing technology sector. 

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(Photo: Reuters / Regis Duvignau)
An illustration picture shows application icons on an Apple Ipad tablet held by a woman in Bordeaux, Southwestern France, February 4, 2013.
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