The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development projects that jobs for software app developers should grow by eight percent during the decade spanning 2012-2022. If the growth of mobile devices and smartphones in the state has any bearing on this figure then it will likely be higher. Currently the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports there are 250 app developers in Alaska, who earn an average salary of $81,350 per year.
Growth of Alaska’s Wireless and App Infrastructure
The use of apps in Alaska has grown steadily in tandem with the growth of smartphones and other mobile devices. In 2009 the FCC reported that there were 226,000 residential connections to the internet in Alaska. By the end of 2013 that number had more than doubled to 580,000 connections – over 78 percent of all residents in Alaska.
In that same period from 2009-2013 the number of internet providers in Alaska also grew by six to 27, as did the number of wireless internet providers, increasing from 13 to 16. It will not surprise anyone that Alaska has the least percentage of internet coverage of any state, however in places like Anchorage, Fairbanks, Naknek, and Prudhoe Bay people have a choice between at least two or three internet service providers.
With expanding network coverage the number of Alaskans with mobile devices has also been on the rise. As one sign of this trend, the percentage of households that are wifi-only in Alaska has more than doubled over recent years. Current statistics from the FCC also show there are more than 334,000 mobile device and smartphone subscribers in Alaska, a rate that is approaching half the entire state’s population.
With so many smartphone users who appreciate apps in Alaska – especially those that relate to local state activities – it goes without saying that there is an app industry behind this boom.