Google is the new darling of software wizards out to cash-in on the world’s love for customising smartphones with fun, hip or functional applications. Developers once obsessed with “apps” for Apple’s hot-selling iPhones are touting creations tailored for smartphones built on the Google-backed Android platform. “In the past seven months, Android has become the de facto second platform out there that people are developing for,” AppNation chairman Drew Ianni told AFP during the gathering of software entrepreneurs this week in San Francisco. “I think there is a general wait-and-see interest regarding platforms outside of Apple iOS and Android,” he added. Mobile platforms being watched by developers include BlackBerry, Microsoft Windows Phone 7 and Hewlett-Packard’s webOS. Ianni expected smartphones based on Microsoft or HP software to increase in allure as they gain traction in the market.
“We need a third platform that is viable, otherwise it is going to be the Android show,” Urban Airship chief executive Scott Kveton said after taking part in an AppNation panel. “Android is growing at a phenomenal rate,” he continued. “I’m afraid it is going to be Android running away with it.” Urban Airship provides tools that help developers make money from smartphone programs. Early in April the Oregon-based company added a feature allowing people to make purchases inside Android applications.
“Increasingly, people are finding it a good investment to build for Android and build for tablets and we are trying to support them,” Google director of mobile Americas Jason Spero said after an on-stage chat at AppNation. Android’s share of the US smartphone market has surged this year while BlackBerry’s sunk, according to recent figures from industry tracker comScore. Android commanded a third of the market, while BlackBerry ranked second with 29 per cent and Apple third with 25 per cent, comScore reported.
Google-backed Android platform:
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