Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

Summary: Google did what it had to with its highly-anticipated Honeycomb demo but the more lasting impact were fixes to the Android Market.

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Google did what it had to with its highly-anticipated Honeycomb demo---it showed a few nice features that closes the Apple iPad gap somewhat---but the more lasting impact were fixes to the Android Market.

Now Google's fixes to the Android Market---I call them fixes since I think that app marketplace is a mess that probably hampered sales---aren't revolutionary.

In a nutshell, the new Android Market:

  • Has more description and an improved interface (like Apple's App Store);
  • Allows you to share apps via social media;
  • Gives developers in-app purchasing and multiple currency support;
  • And enables user to buy apps on the Web and send to a device (like Amazon's Kindle store).

Gallery: Google buzzes about Honeycomb

In the long run, the tweaks to the Android Market, which went live today, will have a more lasting effect. I'd argue that Android app sales have been restrained due to a poor store experience. At least that's why Amazon is exploring an Android app store.

As for the Honeycomb demo, Google highlighted a few 3D features, neat maps and other multi-tasking tools. But in the end, Honeycomb looks a little like Windows 7 on a tablet. Perhaps there's too much stuff there.

However, Google will make us forget those first-gen Android tablets and that's a start. And Honeycomb looks comparable to what the iPad can do. The problem is iPad 2 is right around the corner. In the end, the popularity of the latest batch of Android tablets will depend on price. If Android tablets are cheaper than the iPad they'll find an audience. If Android tabs are on pricing par with Apple, most folks will keep buying the iPad.

Topics: Google, Android, Hardware, iPad, Laptops, Mobility, Tablets

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27 comments
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  • Not so fast

    "In the end, the popularity of the latest batch of Android tablets will depend on price. If Android tablets are cheaper than the iPad theyll find an audience. If Android tabs are on pricing par with Apple, most folks will keep buying the iPad."<br><br>Is that what happened in the Android smart phone market? There are people who simply prefer Apple products, people who do NOT like Apple and finally people who just prefer Android.<br><br>Pricing is just one factor.
    Economister
    • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

      @Economister Exactly, and to further the point the reason why the HTC Evo, Samsung Galaxy's and the Droid X are so popular is because they can run rings around the iPhone in terms of functionality. They are all the same price as the iPhone, and personally I would pay more for an Evo than I would for an iPhone 4, although I am very much the power user and not a typical customer.
      Reggie Middleton
    • And people who do NOT like Andoid

      @Economister
      DDERSSS
      • ROFL. But there are MORE people that DO Like Android

        Sales figures proved that during 10Q4.

        In the US Android outsold iPhone 3-1,
        Worldwide the figure is 2-1,

        How ever you dissect this, Android is more popular!
        Uralbas
      • Some people don't care or don't know

        @Uralbas My brother got an Android phone a few months ago. He knows nothing about phones. The sales pitch was: "like an iphone, but free". Telcos prefer selling Android phones to iPhones, because of the control they have with the Google phone. So here they push them.

        A lot of people don't want to pay for a phone, yet want the smartphone experience. Android is perfect for them. People who care either buy iPhones or Android phones. People who don't most probably go for Android phones, hence a larger market penetration.
        themarty
    • And people that just don't like Android

      @Economister

      It slow and jumpy on its interface.
      Bruizer
      • Again, more BS from Bruizer

        @Bruizer My Incredible is more fluid than my iPad but then again you like being told what is better for you and I make up my own mind...

        Maybe you're not the Bruizer, just Bruised.
        slickjim
    • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

      @Economister <br>I agree. To me, writers are treating devices individually and ignoring the overall eco-system. For example, a person owning a PC, a Blackberry and an iPad might have less integration that someone who chooses the one eco-system and who purchases all of their items from it. That might be an iMac, iPad, iPod and iPhone or other equivalents such as PC, Zune, WP7 phone and W7 tablet. If a person disperses their purchases, such as by having a different phone to tablet, then they will constantly need to doubly or triply buy apps and/or music. In my opinion, more discussion should be about integrated eco-systems than individual devices.
      Wakemewhentrollsgone
    • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

      @Economister Exactly. I think Honeycomb tablets will have enough differentiation to make customers undecided, specially:

      * Flash support using hardware acceleration
      * Widescreen
      * A desktop-mobile hybrid experience. Honeycomb is not just a bigger version of Android. It has mobile and desktop features: interactive widgets, multiple home screens, multi-tasking without even requiring hardware buttons.
      * Video chatting integrated to GMail and Google Voice.
      * Convenience: HDMI output, USB slot and SD Card.

      People who bought an Android phone recently will tend to choose a Honeycomb tablet simply because they go well together. And they are not a minority.
      BioNerd
  • I don't think so

    "At least that?s why Amazon is exploring an Android app store."

    If you have the store then you get to make money on everything sold through the store. That is exactly why Apple will not allow competition from Sony or anyone else by prohibiting 3rd party stores for their devices.
    dragosani
  • Zero Leadership

    Blah, blah? like what Apple has done. Blah blah? more like Apple. A familiar refrain. Not exactly a culture of leadership. The sport of "catch-up" now includes Microsoft. It all feels like a garage sale or dumping ground for tech with a notoriously short shelf life.

    So this is what tech has become? Or has it always been this way? A kind of Canal St hustle in which vast numbers of wilting and cheap knockoffs are hawked to suckers. China seems happy to buy the debt of every tech addicted rube who needs to send a message to Apple for threatening their careers in PC repair.

    Lower that price boys.
    norgate
    • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

      @norgate

      Like Edison with Tesla. Oh wait, Edison died rich and famous, and Tesla died poor, and crazy. Oh wait, you probably don't even <i>know</i> about Tesla.
      man_strosity
      • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

        @rueldeleon@...
        Don't count on that, a lot of us know nikola well.....

        chuckle ;)
        rhonin
      • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

        @rueldeleon@... He probably doesn't know anything that Steve Jobs doesn't tell him!
        slickjim
  • Windows Phone tablets are on the way...

    My rep and I have launched operation "Take A Pill...A Windows Tablet" and have seen tremendous success. We deducted $800 from each IT person's paycheck and provided them with a Windows Phone tablet prototype. Responses were off the charts. It was obvious people were distracted as everyone left their's in the office overnight, obviously afraid they would be too distracted if they brought the tablet home.
    Mike Cox
    • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

      @Mike Cox

      Welcome back.
      Michael Kelly
    • Mikey!

      @Mike Cox
      Good to have your always-astute observations back with us. 8.7.
      Userama
    • Well I'll be ...

      @Mike Cox .. dipped in batter and deep fried! Is that a voice from beyond the grave that from yonder breaks .. ? ?

      ... if it is, could it truly be the voice of [i]razorwit[/i] past?

      [i]"Take A Pill...A Windows Tablet"[/i]

      .. would that be their [i]Happy Pill[/i]?

      9.5 / 10 (..for the promo' phrase alone)

      Willkommen zur?ck Sie alt dr?ngt ;)
      thx-1138_
  • RE: Google fixes Android Market, overshadows Honeycomb demo

    >>>
    it showed a few nice features that closes the Apple iPad gap somewhat
    >>>

    Huh? The iPad UI is the same as the current crop of Android tablets (bar Notion Ink). A scaled up phone OS. Honeycomb is an OS designed specifically for the larger area. This is what the iPad should have been. Maybe the next version will be better, but Android was not behind the iPad on tablets. In fact it was ahead even at 2.x with widgets, notification system, multi-tasking, more options on hardware etc. It's just stretched the lead with Honeycomb.
    os2baba
    • I think you have that completely backwards. [nt]

      [nt]
      olePigeon