We’ve got almost 13k software developers among our users. Here are the 5 best cities in the world for the technology-savvy.

Underneath the income, living costs & quality of life preferences you can toggle in Teleport Cities, there are 180 different data dimensions from 58+ different sources, with topics ranging from an active tech scene to pollution and travel connectivity.

We’ve got a super cool internal data visualization tool in the brewing, so we figured we’d have a look at some of the sweetest places to live for certain professionsstarting out with the tech fam.

developer workspace

What are software developers looking for?

Looking at our statistics, these are the top five preferences our friends in software development care about when looking for their best place to live and work:

  1. Low pollution
  2. Low crime
  3. Low living costs
  4. Startup scene (composed of number of startups, increase in number of startups, startup jobs, city followers (on AngelList), investors, and jobs per startup)
  5. Rent cost

We see these layers a lot – the general safe living environment and low living costs are important to many people regardless of their profession. To make the list more relatable for developers, we went ahead and added five more specifically tech related layers into the mix:

  1. Internet download speed
  2. University quality
  3. Number of tech events per year
  4. Increase in startup count (last three months)
  5. Number of coworking spaces

This should create a pretty good balance between a great tech scene and an affordable and safe living environment. Let’s see what happens.

The top 5 best cities for software developers

Drumroll, please—when we add of these 10 layers all together and give them the same weight in the results, this is what the final top list looks like:

top cities for software developers

Congrats, Canada (although, let’s be real, Berlin is heavily stepping on your heels here)!

To be able to give you a more detailed overview and comparison of the top cities, let’s cut it off at the top 5, although please feel free to go and explore Boston, Singapore, Washington, Seattle and Denver for yourself.

Let’s take the main preferences (startup scene, rent prices, living costs, safety and pollution) that our users in software development care about most – here’s how the top 5 compares:

software developers preferences

When it comes to a lively startup scene, New York, Berlin and London are heavily dominating, which probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to anyone. However, London and New York especially stand out with a low score in environmental quality, the cost of living (consumer price index) is very high, and first and foremost—rent prices are sky high.

Therefore, if low living and housing costs are super important to you and an excellent startup scene score isn’t worth your wallet being half as light, London and New York are probably not the best options.

Instead, out of this batch, Berlin stands out as the most reasonable way to go – it has a stellar tech scene as well as reasonable living costs and (safe) environment.

This is how the top 5 looks like with the tech layers we added:

software developer added layers

Taking into account strictly tech related layers, we can see that London and New York are both winning it, with Berlin not too much behind. Melbourne seems to be lagging here a little, but it’s not terrible, either.

The only thing Toronto—our winner—drags behind on here is university quality, which is also an issue for Berlin and Melbourne, but if this layer isn’t a vital requirement for you, it’s all good.

In conclusionif you’re looking for a near perfect startup and tech scene, aim for London or New York City. If living costs are way more important to you, consider Melbourne or Berlin. And, if you want the best of both worlds, get ready to pack your stuff and set foot towards good ol’ Canada.

Here’s some reading material about the top 5 (make sure to go check out the city profiles to learn even more):


Toronto is a multicultural city in every sense of the word. Nearly half of its population are immigrants from virtually every corner of the globe. The city is internationally known as a center of finance and business as well as the film and television industry.

There are still plenty of ways to unwind, be it hiking in the nature with breathtaking views or immersing in the local cultural scene. Toronto is also one of the top ten city matches for a good chunk of Teleport users42.6%, to be exact.



Berlin is a sprawling, diverse metropolis, home to people from around the world. Although it is roughly nine times the size of Paris, Berlin’s key districts are well-connected by public transport or cycling roads, and many even close enough for walking.

The laid-back atmosphere combined with low living costs attracts young people, artists and entrepreneurs, making Berlin one of the most vibrant startup scenes in Europe.



London, United Kingdom, is among the best cities with a vibrant startup scene. According to our city rankings, it’s also a generally great place to live with high ratings in venture capital, travel connectivity and business freedom.


New York City

The New York metropolitan area is one of the most populated cities in the world. New York City itself is an international center for numerous industries including finance, theater, television, film, arts, and technology.

It is also home to an astonishing 37% of foreign-born residents. Costs are high, but so are the energy levels and ambitious spirit. Whether you’re visiting or planning to move, the “Big Apple” has something to offer for everyone.



Melbourne, Australia, is among the top cities with a free business environment. According to our city rankings, this is a good place to live with high ratings in startups, healthcare and environmental quality.


Image credits:

Toronto – photo by Dennis Jarvis

Berlin – photo by Thomas Wolf

London – photo by Christine Matthews

New York City – photo by John Cunniff

Melbourne – photo by Diliff