XDA Developers

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XDA Developers
XDA Developers screenshot.png
Available in English
Owner Original Owner/Founer: Peter Poelman
Website xda-developers.com
Alexa rank Negative increase 533 (May 2017)[1]
Commercial Yes
Registration Required to participate

XDA Developers (also known simply as XDA; often stylized as xda-developers) is a mobile software development community of over 6.6 million members[2] worldwide, started on 20 December 2002.[3] Although discussion primarily revolves around Android, members also talk about many other operating systems and mobile development topics.


XDA-Developers.com (XDA Developers) was created by NAH6 Crypto Products BV (Netherlands). On 10 January 2011, XDA-Developers was bought by JB Online Media, LLC (USA).[4] The name XDA Developers is originally derived from the O2 XDA, which was marketed as a personal digital assistant (PDA) with "extra" features.[3]

The History of XDA-Developers[edit]

Back in 2003 in the back yard of a small house situated in Amsterdam a group of enthusiasts started in depth testing on pocket pc´s, smartphones and other PDA devices. Peter Poelman and itsme (undoubtedly there were more people involved, but these are the 2 I know for sure started xda-dev) were the first real initiators of XDA development. At that time, none of them would have imagined they would go on to create a small and humble site that would grow into the phenomenon it is today. After initial experimentation, they decided to launch a site especially designed for other developers around the world who could join them in testing/tweaking/modifying and generally improving the usability of their chosen devices. They decided to name the site XDA-DEVELOPERS, following their work with the devices made by the High Tech Computer Corporation (hTC ), who were pioneers in manufacturing PDA-phones. A leading seller of these phones was O2 who branded these phones as XDAs, PDAs with “Xtra” functions.

As the site became bigger and membership grew, other problems appeared including how to maintain control and order amongst almost 100,000 Members by 2006. The initial moderator team was composed of: vijay555, HDuser, buzz_lightyear, mikechannon and many others under the guidance of Itsme, they maintained and administered the site. A dedicated Administrator, Flar was appointed in 2006 as the site now demanded a level of administration that could not be delivered by the owners on a part-time basis in addition to their full-time jobs.

Quote from mikechannon It was these early O2 XDA devices that the founders of our site thought had much more potential than the sellers 02 and HTC were giving them credit for. With their geeky hats on they cracked them open and began to develop them beyond the standard fairly boring branded versions. To spread the word, they set up a small website and naturally called it xda-developers. In the early days they had less than a dozen members (2003). …. and look where we are now!!

People from all around the globe were finding XDA from their internet searches, fed by the hunger to take their devices to another level and to extract the last bit of juice of functionality and usability from their phones.

So, 5 years later and we arrived at 2008 and by this time the site had already exceeded 100,000 active members and the original creators saw that this was not only interesting for developers, it was also a primary resource for end users as well. Membership has continued to grow at the speed of light, much more than anyone on the admin team had expected. In late 2009, site administration changed and it was recognized that it was time for new and fresh ideas on how XDA would move into the future. The first non HTC devices appeared and the Android OS was included, breaking the tradition of catering only for HTC phones and the Windows Mobile OS.

Now in 2010, seven years after XDA was created, we stand as a reference point in the mobile world. XDA is now a truly international site operating on a global scale, having more than 501,449 threads, 7,594,515 posts and more than 2,811,152 members. Creating these incredible numbers, is a daily average of over 10,000 members.

Xda-developers has been here since the start, as we saw in orb3000’s part one of this two part story. I’m here to cover the more recent news and what has come out of our community. From rooting and ROM development, to flashing and hacking, XDA members and developers have been the ones sustaining this community and are the reason we have had so much fun playing with our devices.

After XDA hit the ground running, it didn’t take long for us to make our first breakthroughs and become the first in the smartphone scene to have a site as unique as xda-developers.

As the population started growing on the site, we soon saw more development of ROMs and apps for Windows CE and Windows Mobile devices. This type of development was never done before as apps were locked by the manufacturer and carriers. Along the way, we have seen some great projects and things come out of XDA that is truly what the spirit behind the site is. Not far behind, was the addition of XDA’s first non-htc device along with other additions such as Android. These changes were all made in 2009. As quoted from a quick interview with xda-developer and Senior Moderator Chainfire:

“The key to XDA’s continued success has been the addition of new devices and OS’s, which have broadened the community and united it all under one roof where people can collaborate and develop many great things for their smartphones.”

And with all this activity, it sure hasn’t been hard to write stories on such development.

If you haven’t been around long on XDA then you may have not noticed the big increase in users. XDA now grows at a rate of roughly 3,000-5,000 new users a day. The site also has a constant 10,000 users online on average at any given time. With so many new devices and users, there is a lot of content that comes out of XDA. Everyday it seems there is a new ROM, application, or tweak that a user has made.

Part of keeping the site the way it is, is because of the dedicated staff that works the forums and the behind the scenes operations. We have Administrators, Senior Moderators, Forum Specific Moderators, and of course the News Writers. We all work tirelessly to make sure the users are behaving, some of you may not like us for our actions but we have lots of responsibilities. Since there are 2.8 Million users and only about 100 moderators, that is a ratio of 1 moderator for every 28,000 users. As of this last Summer XDA has implemented a new moderation system designating some moderators to forums and others to a more general area. Keep in mind that all moderators are non-paid volunteers who dedicate countless hours to make sure the site runs smooth and isn’t in a total chaos.

So far, we have only been inclusive to Android and Win Mo OS’s. Recently, XDA admins Svetius and Arbre announced the addition of iphone-developers.com to the XDA family. The site is up and running in beta and hopefully we will see some great development come from the Apple side of development and more openness with this OS. We may also see an addition of other OS’s down the road depending on their popularity and development possibilities. When Android was introduced, we became a major benefactor to the OS and we hope to see this happen again with another mobile platforms.


The site's main purpose is discussion, troubleshooting and development for Android, Sailfish OS, Windows Phone, WebOS, Ubuntu Touch, Firefox OS and Tizen phones. The site also offers Windows Mobile and Android users general information about devices, ROM upgrades, technical support, Q&A, and reviews of device applications and accessories. Separate forums exist for each model of phones manufactured by Micromax Mobile, Sony, HTC, Samsung, LG Electronics, Motorola, and many others. Forums are also available for tablets and many other devices.


Joshua Solan manages and owns XDA Developers via his company JB Online Media, LLC. [5] [6]

JB Online Media, LLC, is located at 1400 N Providence Blvd, Suite 303, Media, PA 19063, USA [7]

Custom ROM controversy[edit]

In February 2009, Microsoft asked XDA Developers to remove all ROMs created by OEMs.[8] In response, a petition was raised and signed by over 10,000 XDA Developers members. The petition was put aside when Microsoft did not pursue the removal of the customized images. Microsoft felt that using custom images based on the ROMs originally provided by Microsoft was acceptable as the ROMs work only on specific models and are not portable to devices for which the original ROM was not designed.

CNET Asia suggested that XDA Developers offers potential solutions to problems with many Android-based mobile devices. In other mobile phone reviews, testers at CNET preferred using XDA Developers' ROMs when carrying out detailed reviews.[9]

Many software and hardware hacks, rooting methods, and other phone and tablet specific tweaks originate from the members of the XDA Forum. The XDA Portal, launched February 2010,[10] is a source for Android and mobile phone development news.

See also[edit]


xda-developers: The History -Part One- By XDA Administrators "MikeChannon" & "Flar" on 10/18/2010 {The History of XDA-Developers}

xda-developers: The History -Part Two- By XDA Administrators "MikeChannon" & "Flar" on 10/27/2010 {The History of XDA-Developers}

  1. ^ "xda-developers.com Site Info". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 2017-05-20. 
  2. ^ "XDA Developers Statistics". xda-developers. June 11, 2015. Retrieved 2015-06-11. 
  3. ^ a b "xda-developers change log". xda-developers. Retrieved 2016-11-30. 
  4. ^ "XDA Changelog". Xda Developers. Jb Online Media, Llc. Retrieved 9 November 2013. 
  5. ^ "U.S. Copyright Office Filing" (PDF). U.S. Copyright Office. Retrieved 13 October 2014. 
  6. ^ "About Themer". Themerapp.com. Archived from the original on 6 July 2015. Retrieved 27 January 2016. 
  7. ^ "U.S. Copyright Office Filing" (PDF). U.S. Copyright Office. Retrieved 13 October 2014. 
  8. ^ Dennis, Tony (February 16, 2007). "Microsoft stomps on xda developers". The Inquirer. Retrieved 2011-05-22. 
  9. ^ Chan, John (January 23, 2008). "HTC and the case of the missing drivers". CNET Asia. Retrieved 2011-05-22. 
  10. ^ "XDA Launches Portal". xda-developers. February 16, 2010. Retrieved 2012-12-20.