Days after Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) announced its App Store now features more than 250,000 iOS-based mobile applications, rivals Google and Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) have checked in with inventory updates on their own storefronts: Android Market now boasts more than 80,000 applications, while BlackBerry App World stands at over 10,000. Google updated Android Market's status in conjunction with the introduction of T-Mobile USA's new Android-powered G2 smartphone--the store has added 10,000 new apps since mid-July. Google vice president of engineering Andy Rubin credited Android's open-source ethos for fostering developer interest in the platform: "Developer-led Android innovation is flourishing," he said in a prepared statement. "On Android Market alone, the number of applications available to consumers has grown from just 50 applications two years ago to more than 80,000 applications today."
But access to Android Market is not available to all devices running the Android OS. Hugo Barra, Google's director of products for mobile, said that Android 2.2 (a.k.a. 'Froyo') is not optimized for use on tablets, adding "The way Android Market works is it's not going to be available on devices that don't allow applications to run correctly. If you want Android Market on that platform, the apps just wouldn't run--[Froyo] is just not designed for that form factor. We want to make sure that we're going to create an application distribution mechanism for the Android Market, to ensure our users have right experience."
Screen size and resolution appear to be the culprits. The Android Developers website states that from Android 1.6 and up, the OS supports three generalized size (large, normal and small) and three generalized densities (high [hdpi], medium [mdpi] and low [ldpi]), with an upper resolution limit of 480x854 on screens measuring from 3.5 inches to 4.0 inches diagonal. Google has hinted that future Android versions beginning with 3.0 (a.k.a. 'Gingerbread') will support the larger tablet form factor.
As for BlackBerry App World, RIM confirmed the 10,000 application benchmark via its Twitter account. RIM recently stated that more than 30 million BlackBerry smartphone users across 65 countries have downloaded BlackBerry App World since it first opened in spring 2009, with consumers averaging more than a million app downloads each day. RIM rolled out a revamped BlackBerry App World in late July--the store now supports credit card payments on top of PayPal, with a handful of carrier partners offering operator billing options as well. BlackBerry App World also boasts new tabbed sections for various application lists: Users can horizontally swipe or scroll to view the Top 25 Free Apps, Top 25 Paid Apps and Top 25 Themes, along with checklists spotlighting the Newest Apps and Recently Updated Apps.
For more on Android Market:
- read this TechRadar article
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