Average Salary (£) for OS X Software Engineer?

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by OS X Dude, Jun 4, 2008.

  1. OS X Dude macrumors 6502a

    OS X Dude

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    #1
    Hi,

    The people who work on Mac OS X (like the people working on 10.6 now), what do you suppose they earn? £50k?

    I ask because it's something I would like to do and Google can't seem to help me find out :(


    Thanks
     
  2. yeroen macrumors 6502a

    yeroen

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    #2
    Keeping in line with what I generally know about software development salaries, I'd suspect anywhere from US $60K to $120K a year, perhaps more (if it turns out that, as a working software developer, I'm grossly underpaid) That's just salary and doesn't include stock options, bonuses, etc.

    Of course, being in Silicon Valley (like New York City or even worse, London) that money doesn't go nearly as far you'd think.
     
  3. Sayer macrumors 6502a

    Sayer

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    #3
    You want to be a Systems / OS engineer? That's usually the upper eschelon of programming. I guess I am an application programmer and as such don't make as much as quoted above. Still for what I do its crazy how much I get a week. I like money so it all works out okay.
     
  4. Sijmen macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    I wonder why there's such a taboo on salary. Is it wrong to say "I make € X per year?"
     
  5. liptonlover macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    well it can make people who don't make as much feel bad. But I think it's fine here. It's not like you're going out and saying your salary for no reason.
     
  6. yeroen macrumors 6502a

    yeroen

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    #6
    To give an example, I felt bad when I learned that first year associates at white-shoe law firms in big cities like New York, Boston, and Washington DC start out at $160K/year, bonus not included. For that much money, I could maintain my current living standard and hire an english butler at above-market rates.
     
  7. Earendil macrumors 68000

    Earendil

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    #7
    It's pretty easy to get the average software engineer salary, heck you can find it by city/region!

    If I were to add a qualifier to the original question, I guess I'd want to know which side makes more money on average, and what the demand is in the OSX market vs the windows market. Obviously all us CS majors come out trained to work on the windows side, and yet the OSX side is a hella lot smaller (by software volume).

    Ideas?
     
  8. bigjnyc macrumors 601

    bigjnyc

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    #8
    I work for a big investment bank in NYC and beleive me that kind of money doesnt go too far here in the city. housing prices are downright absurd, taxes are legal robbery, tolls, food and a night out on the town are super expensive.
     
  9. oli2140 macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Good luck hiring the English butler with that kind of money...
     
  10. lee1210 macrumors 68040

    lee1210

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    #10
    http://dice.salary.com/salarywizard...leselect&searchtype=1&geo=Cupertino,+CA+95014

    This is the free dice report for Operating Systems Programmer V in the Cupertino area where Apple is located. Chances are these are the people doing the hard engineering work on Apple operating systems. It looks like the median is $125K US/year. Now obviously doing a straight conversion from US$ to GBP to Euros is not really going to take various cost of living differences, supply/demand for a position in an area, etc. into account, but a straight conversion is 64 GBP.

    While it does seem touchy, and it might hurt some people's feelings (especially since I see some others from the Austin area) I don't think I'm grossly over- or underpaid at ~$xxK (~xx GBP) as a Senior-ish Software Engineer in the Healthcare Informatics field. I feel a little bad that if i was a badass systems programmer in CA I'd be making closer to $125K, but I also know that for the house I live in here my mortgage in CA would probably be 3-4x as much.

    -Lee
     
  11. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #11
    Good CS courses are platform independant as CS has nothing to do with specific platforms. It is more a maths discipline.
     
  12. yeroen macrumors 6502a

    yeroen

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    #12
    As a fellow math-nazi, I couldn't agree with you more. Unfortunately in a bid to make the field more accessible, many departments have severely relaxed their undergraduate math requirements. Hence, the 'CIS' degree.
     
  13. Earendil macrumors 68000

    Earendil

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    #13
    I suppose what I mean is, most of the platforms we LEARN on are Windows, with some Linux. After C++ and Java, an extra course might be C#, not Object-C or Cocoa.
    More people learn to use Visual Studio, not XCode. And, most users are Windows to begin with, and certainly most professors grew up on the Windows/Linux side. In a strictly B&W world, I think Windows comes out ahead.

    Now I'm not saying that's the best case, nor should it be the standard. I'm also not saying that's the essence of Computer science, because it certainly isn't.

    What I'm saying is, if you are trained in the falling of trees, and the took for training was a saw, and you go out to take down a tree for the first time, and your options are an axe and a saw, you aren't likely to choose the axe.

    There is a certain amount of comfortability in working with what you know. I might be wrong because I have no sources to back up this feeling, but I'm thinking that the ratio of competent windows programs to OSX programmers, right out of school, is worse than the ratio of Windows and OSX users.
     
  14. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

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    #14
    Apple does not pay in £. Yes the figure can exchanged into pounds with 2:1 ratio, but it doesn't work that way.

    Cost of living in CA can be high in the high tech areas, but not as expensive as London, so it would have no meaning in £.

    Cost of living in London is twice as much as a city such as Boston (and probably 3x or even parts of US midwest). I would say perhaps cost of living of London is 1.5x the cost of living in the high tech areas.
     
  15. OS X Dude thread starter macrumors 6502a

    OS X Dude

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    #15
    I was intending to work from the UK, hence the £.
     
  16. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    #16
    Not if you want to work for Apple on OSX. It's Cupertino all the way...
     
  17. liptonlover macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    just google search "software engineer average salary"
    I just did, lots of results.
     
  18. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    #18
    I think you are "close" but it varies widely. At the low end of the pay scale are people who are writing the back ends for web pages, ost of this work does not really qualify as "enginerring" and at the other end are people who can lead small groups of enginerrs is very technical and specialized areas in system software. So it could be as much as 50% higher or lower.

    But remember, In Silicone Valley no one thinks anything about a house that sells for a million dollars. You can work out the monthly payment on that, I'm sure. The salery puts you in a middle class lifestyle and your kids into a good public school but that is about it.
     
  19. lee1210 macrumors 68040

    lee1210

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    #19
    I'll toss in my opinion, since this thread "went there", that CS has little to do with programming. In a number of my courses we could turn in assignments in whatever language we wanted as long as the TA would agree to grade it (and that gave us a pretty wide berth). The programming aspect was to demonstrate our understanding of a concept or algorithm, not to make us good programmers or proficient on any platform.

    If a school is teaching things in Visual Studio, I think they're doing something wrong. If they require an assignment in C, if someone wants (and can manage) to write standard C in Visual Studio more power to them. C# is tricky, and I would expect that most serious CS profs would not use it. Maybe in an Information Systems degree in a business school, along with VB.NET and the like, but probably not in a serious CS program.

    Note I don't mean that C# isn't a real/serious programming language, but training you to be able to work on a particular OS, architecture, platform and even a specific IDE seems to be the domain of a trade school rather than a university. In CS programming is a means to an end, not a pursuit of its own merit.

    -Lee
     
  20. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    #20
    I'd agree 100% CS should be about learning the concepts and philosophies of computing, not how to use Visual Studio (or any other specific toolset). When I did CS at Edinburgh we were told that our assignments for our Object-Oriented programming class could be handed in written in any OO language we wanted as long as it would compile and run on Solaris. Most chose Java, but the class did not teach any specific language...
     
  21. Earendil macrumors 68000

    Earendil

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    #21
    Why do I feel like we agree, and yet still aren't talking about the same thing?

    I school/program/classroom/professor/or subject matter can not be taught equally well on every platform in every language for practical logistics reasons.
    So, tools must be chosen, perhaps a few tools, in order to learn the art of Computer Science.

    My point and argument, is that those tools lean more towards a windows environment, with a larger push towards Linux of late, then it does towards OSX. Am I mistaken?
    So while I fresh graduate way be trained in an art that can be applied using any tool out there, that student will inevitably be more familiar with the tools he used to learn with, than a brand new set (XCode/Object-C).

    If someone wanted me to whip out a quick calculator program for them, I would not go to XCode and Object-C, sadly, because those are not the tools I am currently familiar with. Could that program be written with any number of IDE's, in any number of languages? Most certainly.

    I think we all agree on the definition of CS, and what the ideal education in such a field would involve. But does anyone disagree with my assertion of the situation as it stands today in the Software Engineering carrier?


    All of that to ask my question yet again: Who is starving/getting paid more, the guys working on the Windows side, or the guy on the OSX side?
    Where is there a greater demand for competent knowledge of the tools?

    ~Earendil
     
  22. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #22
    I don't understand what computer science has to do with an IDE. Surely that is what software engineering is? But learning tools should be something the student does surely?
     
  23. lee1210 macrumors 68040

    lee1210

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    #23
    This is going to be much, much harder to quantify than some of the other things we've discussed in this post (and I think is different than the OPs question, but anyhow..). For one, I would say (hope) that most CS programs are focusing on general POSIX APIs for system level things, and other broad tools (Java is pretty cross-platform till you get GUIfied, etc.) that don't tie you to a platform.

    Maybe the tools that are used do lean towards Windows (though not in my somewhat recent experience) and Linux (Or other UNIX-alikes, this seems to be more prevalent), but this really doesn't matter unless you are worried about making a GUI and not programming the application logic/business logic/backend whatever. System-level APIs might also tie you down, but the GUI and System level seem to only cover the two extremes, with most tasks falling squarely in the middle.

    If you want to know if someone who knows Win32 (or .NET/Winforms) vs. Cocoa will be paid more, I doubt that there's any way to say. You'll probably have an easier time finding a job with Win32 skills, but once you do I doubt either will pay more if that's the only criteria. Perhaps there are fewer Cocoa developers, so the demand could be somewhat higher, leading to slightly higher salaries, but a Win32 dev is not better than a Cocoa dev or vice versa.

    I'm really in a poor position to say as I do neither. I write server-side code in Fortran 9X, C, shell, SQL and Java targeting Linux (though I do the Java dev in an IDE on Windows then deploy a Jar to Linux, and it runs the same).

    -Lee
     
  24. OS X Dude thread starter macrumors 6502a

    OS X Dude

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    #24
    Live in USA? Not for me. So Apple don't offer any software engineering jobs in the UK full stop?
     
  25. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    #25
    I looked into it a while back. Basically no.
     

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