Mobile Developer Report, "developer momentum is shifting back toward Apple." Tablet interest is particularly precarious, with Honeycomb apparently yet to convince developers to create slate-specific titles. While 86-percent of iOS coders expressed interest in developing for the iPad, only 71-percent of Android developers said the same about Honeycomb-based tablets; similarly, only 44-percent were "very interested" in the Motorola XOOM and just 31-percent in the HTC Flyer. Nonetheless, despite the concerns, developers don't seem to be looking elsewhere. 62-percent say that they don't see how rival platforms could ever catch up to Android and iOS, while the numbers of those expressing interest in developing for Windows Phone or BlackBerry have in fact dropped. The January 2011 report had suggested that Google developer interest was growing, and that the platform would soon catch up to Apple's iOS. [via ReadWriteWeb]
Google I/O 2011 sold out in less than an hour, a sure sign that there's plenty of interest in Google's developer ecosystem, and so the search giant has decided to throw open the virtual doors to the conference. Google I/O Live is, as the name suggests, live streaming from the Moscone Center where the event is being held, free of charge to access. There'll be cameras in the two largest session rooms covering the full 9am PST to 6pm PST keynotes on both full days of Google I/O, covering not only keynotes but Android and Chrome developer sessions too. Google is also aiming to get HD video available of any session not streamed up in under 24hrs. All the feeds will be captioned (including machine-translated foreign language support) and virtual participants will be able to ask questions and those with the most votes will get answered. Google I/O kicks off on May 10 2011, and Android Community will be there to bring back all the juicy details from the opening keynote.
User Experience Lead for Google TV, who would take responsibility for guiding third-party software onto the Android-based STBs. Based at Mountain View, the new employee would be "asked to pioneer new possibilities for web-based and Android application experiences on the platform and establish the patterns and standards used to develop great interactive experiences on Google TV." The absence of apps has been a thorn in Google TV's side since the first products were released, limiting functionality to the preloaded software and whatever could be accessed online. Back in March, a Logitech exec suggested that the Android Market would be arriving "soon" though Google itself has given no public timescale beyond sometime in 2011. Google is believed to be looking to integrate the Google TV codebase with the Gingerbread codebase for phones and the Honeycomb codebase for tablets, into a single AOSP that would allow them to be significantly more nimble with overall updates. That is expected to be the basis of Ice Cream, the next Android release. [via SlashGear]
has launched in-app billing on the Android Market, allowing developers to offer extra levels in their games, additional services and virtual goods in their apps. The system will also enable try-and-buy, where apps can be offered free to trial and then activated in full without demanding a whole new download. As you'd expect, Google has worked with a few software vendors in advance to give a demonstration of how the in-app billing system works. Tap Tap Revenge, Comics, Gun Bros, Deer Hunter Challenge HD, WSOP3 and Dungeon Defenders: FW Deluxe have all been updated. Full details for developers are here, but the key points are that Google still takes a 30-percent cut of every transaction - just as it already does for basic app purchases - and that, since it uses no special APIs, it shouldn't require too much reworking of code. More on the security side here.
Rovio on Fragmentation. On Thursday Google came out with some information that will soon change all of that. The Fragments API.
has released the final Android 3.0 Honeycomb SDK, complete with finalized APIs, on the eve of the first Honeycomb-based tablet being released. Developers now have the final set of tools to code for the Motorola XOOM and subsequent Android 3.0 slates, and the new API level is 11. The Android 3.0 Honeycomb platform highlights are here, and there's a breakdown of differences between APIs here. There's also an update to SDK Tools (r10) and ADT Plugin for Eclipse (10.0.0), including such niceties as improved rendering of what the final on-screen app will look like. Instructions for downloading the Android 3.0 SDK are here.