Android Ecosystem — This Week in Android


gigaom_icon_google-android1Welcome to our newest Monday feature — Android Ecosystem! While some folks are bandying around different sales numbers for the Motorola Droid (s mot) — estimates range between 200,000 and 250,000 in the first week — others are more concerned about the state of the Android Marketplace (s goog). Jason Kincaid penned an interesting piece on how Google needs a desktop application store. Apple certainly has one in iTunes, but as Jason admits in his article, 90 percent of iPhone software purchases are made over the air according to an AdMob survey.

samsung_sgh-t939_behold_iiI’m not representative of your mainstream consumer, but I can’t remember the last time — or even the first time — that I looked for software in the iTunes store on a computer. I don’t think a desktop app store alone is the answer, but it wouldn’t hurt — instead, Google needs to continue revamping its mobile Android Marketplace to make it easier to find apps. I’m not against Jason’s suggestion to revamp the existing Google Android Marketplace website with a “buy here and push to phone” software store. While that would be useful, I don’t see much value added — the best mobile solution is to have customers find what they need for their handset right on their handset, not in front of a computer. Google can start by making better use of screen real estate in the Market — I find that the large “Update” and “Install” buttons are too big and there’s too much scrolling in general when look at an application’s details. Is it just me?

While we ponder and debate Android software approaches, let’s not forget that some new hardware is due out this week. The Samsung Behold II arrives for T-Mobile customers on Wednesday. That price of admission nets you a 3.2″ AMOLED touchscreen display, Samsung’s TouchWIZ interface riding atop Android 1.6, a 2 GB microSD card, Wi-Fi, 3G and 5 megapixel camera. I’ve read two different price tags for the Behold II — $199 and $229 — and Samsung’s official press release does nothing to clarify a price. I’m thinking $199 is the cost later this week because we’re starting to see real competition to get good smartphones under the $199 barrier after subsidy.



the Droid launch reminds me of a rapper “dropping” an album & everyone expects it to go 1x platinum the 1st week. but when the numbers come out & it only sales 1/4 that everyone is stunned.

while the Pre/Droid launch might be considered successful because they are the only smartphones able to sales hundreds-of-thousands at launch. i think VZW had much much higher hopes for the Droid. theres no way they expected a smaller company (Palm), smaller network (Sprint) to perform nearly the same if not better…

besides the iPhone, i doubt we will ever see blockbuster launches (100,000+ 1st week) like the Pre/Droid again. the market is getting ready to become HEAVILY saturated with smartphones. this was VZW 1st & only coming out party, they should have done much better.

oh by the way, HTC Hero is absolutely flopping on Sprint. thought it was suppose to be the new Flagship after Pre? it will be interesting to see the Eris numbers…



I think the difference is that Palm has many followers and generally only one new device out at a time while the Driod phone if just one of many new, cool android phones. And, you can get Android phones on different carriers so if someone was really hot for one they could switch carriers.


its funny how Palm moved over 350,000 units in less than 2 weeks while Droid has moved even less, has 2x the network size, had a HUGE ad campaign.

yet the Palm launch was considered a flop & Droid is a “smash success”? i think this is a big part of why the general public doesnt take news seriously & bloggers even less seriously. every news organization forms different opinions in order to fit their own agenda (whos your friends, wheres your paycheck come from, whos your advertisers, favors, personal bias, etc).

personally, ive always felt the Palm launch was ho-hum, but the Droid launch is an absolute flop. considering everything it had going for it, namebrand Google/VZW, network size, ad campaign, there is NO way VZW execs are very happy right now. i guarantee you they expected a 1m+ launch opening week but didnt expect to overthrow Apples 1.6m. they have to be choking on that 250,000 number right now.


You guys seem to forget that the Droid on Verizon is a result of iPhone envy, and last year Verizon conned many of their own subscribers to buy into the Blackberry Storm 1 hype. Hey, I almost bought into it myself, but refused to pay the absurd data costs that Verizon customers have to bear. So you have a couple million Crapberry Storm customers locked into 2 year contracts that even though they realize that the Droid is a far better phone, won’t pay full price for it, are distrusting of Verizon after buying/testing the buggy Storm, and are waiting until their contract ends to see the winner of the Android Wars. Let’s not forget that the Droid Eris launched at the same time, is an incredible smartphone, and is priced $100 cheapr. The Blackberry Storm 2 is out as well, which again, serves the same potential touchscreen smartphone customer base. The Pre was launched on Sprint with no competition. Since then, the Android Hero has been outselling the Pre. It’s easy for phones like Storm 1, Pre, and even the original Android G1 (which broke records at T-Mobile)to sell strongly when there’s no competition.

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