Will There Be an Android App Boom Soon?

With a number of Google’s Android OS-based smartphones on the horizon, developers are devoting significant resources to the mobile platform, which will result in a boom in Android apps, according to reports  from two Silicon Valley startups, Flurry and AdMob. Flurry, a San Francisco-based mobile metrics company, today said that it had seen an unprecedented 94 percent increase in the number of projects started by Android developers between September and October. 

androidprojectsFlurry collects data from more than two-thirds of all Android-powered devices, and nearly 500 developers have embedded Flurry Analytics across more than 1,500 applications, tracking more than 100 million end user sessions to date.  Of the estimated 3 million Android handsets deployed, more than 2.1 million include applications integrated with Flurry Analytics, the company says.

AdMob, which serves advertising inside mobile apps, recently noted that Android OS accounted for 17 percent of all smartphone traffic in its network in September, up from 13 percent in August.

“With 12 Android phones already available through 32 carriers in 26 countries, the international impact of Android may be greater than it is in the U.S.,” AdMob said on its official blog. About 10,000 apps are available for the Android platform vs. 85,000 for Apple’s iPhone OS. More than 2 billions apps have been downloaded from Apple’s iTunes App Store.

Last week, Douglas MacMillan of BusinessWeek profiled iPhone app developers who had made over a million dollars by selling their applications (or games). In comparison, many Android app developers have been frustrated with the Android stores and lack of sales.

That might change soon, as AdMob folks point out on their blog:

There is also huge marketing muscle behind Android now. Verizon, who has been aching for a handset to combat the iPhone, launched the much discussed Droid campaign this past weekend. Motorola is betting the house on Android and investing significantly in the Cliq and MotoBlur functionality. Enter a T-Mobile store and the myTouch is promoted everywhere, from the devices to the signage to the accessory wall. No doubt that this will be a huge holiday season for Android devices in the U.S.

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Last week, Sebastian pointed out that Android needs more than just marketing to succeed against the RIM and Apple juggernauts. More than 75 million Android handsets will ship in 2012, according to Gartner Research, making Google’s mobile operating system the second most popular smartphone OS behind Symbian. The problems Android faces are fragmentation of the user experience and the existence of multiple app stores.

Google will have to step up to the plate with exceptional marketing and promotion to get the all-important dollars into the pockets of already-enthusiastic developers.

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