Microsoft's SQL Server is the most popular database application in China, India, Eastern Europe and Latin America, but its open-source competitor MySQL is gaining ground.
A survey of 400 developers found that more than 50 per cent are running SQL Server, particularly in China and Latin America. MySQL's popularity is growing, however, and is used by 46 per cent of companies, mostly in the Indian market.
Microsoft's Visual Basic programming language is also popular in emerging markets, according to the survey. Latin America and China lead the way, but Visual Basic is less popular in Eastern Europe.
The research also found that development teams are typically largest in India and smallest in Latin America and Eastern Europe. Around 80 per cent of Latin American development teams had fewer than six members, compared to under 30 per cent in India.
"Even in this economic downturn the emerging markets represent a significant opportunity for independent software vendors, as we see developer population growth more than double that of the rest of the world," said John Andrews, president of research firm Evans Data, which carried out the survey.
"However, the approach to these markets has to be tailored given the vast differences with developer demographics and the associated differences in technology and services adoption."
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