Google I/O rocks!

Weekly newsletter of Android and Global Mobile Market

Presented by: Ndoo Networks

Android Market Growth

  • Android phones surpass iPhone in Japan

    Google’s Android software captured 57% of Japan’s smartphone market last fiscal year, cutting the share of Apple’s iPhone, MM Research Institute Ltd said. Shipments of Android phones rose to 4.91 million units in the year ended March 31, Tokyo-based MM Research said in a statement. That compares with sales of 250,000 units, or 11 per cent of the market, a year earlier when devices running Google’s software started to be widely available in Japan.

    Apple shipped 3.23 million iPhones in Japan in the last fiscal year, accounting for 38 per cent of the nation’s smartphone market, the report said. The company, whose mobile phones are offered exclusively by Softbank Corp in Japan, shipped 1.69 million of the devices for a 72 per cent share a year earlier, according to the report.


  • GOOGLE I/O 2011 Android KEYNOTE (I/O 2011)

    100 million activated Android devices

    400,000 new Android devices activated every day

    200,000 free and paid applications available in Android Market

    4.5 billion applications installed from Android Market

    International market is really picking up. Last year this time 70% of device activations were US, but now over half are abroad. US is around 40% of app consumption of Android Market. The take-away: the US is very important, but so is international.

    “Android users love games.” “Android users are more technically savvy — they’re interested in tools that add more utility.” Productivity has remained a top category since the beginning, but a few apps represent bulk of revenue. These are relatively expensive apps that do well.

    Starting today, based on the manifest of your application, you can upload published or draft app and see which devices it will be visible to. You can also opt out specific devices.

    Another feature: in some cases developers have multiple versions of the same app for different products. Starting in June will launch multi-APK. Developers can have different versions of the app for different platform versions, screen sizes, texture compression formats — available as one product listing. All the user ratings, comments, billing are aggregated.

    Launching support for large apps in June. Support up to 4GB — Publish 50MB app package and up to two 2GB archives. Android Market will host these files. Market will manage the download and install of the archives. Want to make it easy to launch marketing in products. One-click entry to AdMob campaign setup from dev console.

    Starting today, adding new page on Android Market webpage called ‘Trending’. Also launching two more lists: Top New Free and Top New Paid. Refactoring existing Top Free and Top Paid to focus on most popular apps. And, a big one: Launching Top Grossing list.

    Starting today these lists will be regionalized for top countries around the world. Adding ‘Users also viewed‘ and ‘Users also installed‘. Will feature personal recommendations based on your apps Starting today, launching Editor’s Choice. This is aimed at providing consumers information making it easy to find the best apps. Also launching Top Developers — top devs who make great apps consistently will be highlighted. See screenshot below.

    There’s accelerating growth, particularly outside of the US. Want to increase the number of buyers in Android Market (i.e. bring payments to more countries. 99 additional countries getting buyer support .

    Carrier billing: saw sales transactions double in Asia when carrier billing launched.

    In-app billing launched 45 days ago. A few apps have it, make up 14% of average daily revenue. They monetize 25x more than counterpart on paid side.


Android App Market Update

  • One of the most important pieces in the Android ecosystem is Android Market — Google’s application storefront that comes pre-installed on the vast majority of Android devices. Yes, there are third-party markets (Amazon launched a rival in March), but with 4.5 billion app installs so far, the official Market is where most of the action is. Today at a breakaway session at Google I/O, Eric Chu took the stage to walk developers through some of the key trends on Android Market, and to announce some new features that will be coming soon.

    The web version now features a dozen new lists that showcase various applications, including, ‘Trending‘ and ‘Top Grossing‘ lists. Market will start suggesting apps based on your previous downloads. And the Android team is taking a more active role in flagging the best apps — there are new badges that top developers can earn for producing consistently good applications, and an ‘editor’s choice’ badge that can be placed on individual great apps. All of this is designed to help both users and developers weed through the noise.

    The client version of Market on Android devices is also getting an update that will include many of these new discovery features. The visual design looks significantly better than the current app. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like the web version of Market is getting a redesign and there wasn’t a discussion about the Tablet version of the Market client.


Android Tablet Update

  • Google’s Plan to Take Android Everywhere (I/O 2011)

    Call it real-world domination, or simply Android Everywhere: Google unveiled two initiatives at its I/O developer conference on Tuesday that hint at plans to take Android well beyond the mobile and tablet device space.

    The first part of the puzzle was the unveiling of the Android Accessory Mode, which makes it possible for third-party developers to build hardware accessories that can communicate with Android devices via USB. One of the applications demonstrated by Google included game controllers for Android devices, and companies exhibiting at I/O showcased the use of Google’s reference Accessory Development Kit (ADK) to play music, grow plants and control robots.

    Google used part of its Tuesday keynote to preview Android@Home as an initiative to connect all kinds of appliances in the home. The company teamed up with LED company Lighting Science Group to develop an open source wireless protocol that can be used to roll out inexpensive hardware for mesh networking.

    Combine these technologies with the existing Android developer ecosystem, and things are going to get interesting. Android devices will automatically detect connected accessories, whether these are plugged in via USB or connected through a mesh network, and give apps the ability to utilize their functionality.

    There will also be entirely new categories of applications, designed to specifically run on devices that don’t have displays, or work with different types of input. One prototype device demonstrated during the I/O keynote was dubbed Tungsten, a music player that interacts with the user through NFC.


Mobile Internet and Others


  • Angry Bird’s Rovio Mulling IPO

    The maker of the popular mobile game Angry Birds is reportedly eyeing an initial public offering sometime over the next three or four years, Rovio’s chief marketing officer, Peter Vesterbacka, told Finnish business daily Kauppalehti on Monday.

    While an IPO is not necessary at the moment for Rovio to achieve its current plans, Vesterbacka said it would offer a more meaningful direction down the road than would selling the company. The Finnish gaming company operates a new office in China and has mulled new facilities in Japan and the U.S.



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