Google’s highly lucrative developer competition has finally come to an end – the winners have now been released and posted to Google Code.
When one looks at the final results, one immediately sees that traditional business applications and games are completely absent: not a single traditional game or application has made it into the top 50. Instead, the panel at Google’s chose to nominate a variety of funky-but-mostly-useless applications that mostly use GPS or offer another form of Location based Service.
While it always is possible that Google felt like helping innovative developers with ideas that are less easy to sell than, say a good scientific calculator, I am nevertheless concerned about the total lack of a business app or game.
This could very well be considered as a sign from Google telling some developer types to stay out of “their” turf – the company has had its own email client, photo processor and office suite for quite some time and probably won’t be too happy about further competition.
Google has repeatedly stated that one of the ideas behind Android was the creation of a new “front-end” for displaying ads to customers: if this should work well, users must spend a lot of time inside of Google’s apps so that ads can be displayed to them in an effective fashion (the company IMHO is very unlikely to allow third-party developers to integrate AdSense ad space into their apps).
Thus, a successful third party application always deducts from Google’s revenue. The programs that got the awards all have a very short “half-life” – you use them, and return to the OS quickly (to process your results further)…
For me, the reasons outlined above make me more skeptical about Android. Honestly: I have not planned ports to Android before – but with the current information out on the market, I am pretty sure that I won’t get down with this OS before having exhausted all other (WM, S60, J2ME) options or having seen how the market shapes up…
What do you think?