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Google opens up App development to everyone

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July 13, 2010

Google opens up App development to everyone

Google opens up App development to everyone

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When Google announced this past Monday that the company would be releasing App Inventor, an app development tool requiring zero programming knowledge, a number of questions arose around the tech sphere. Would this lead to an explosion of Android apps? And if so, how are we supposed to filter through all the 'crapps' that are sure to enter the marketplace (Attention, World, I invented a word: crap+apps=crapps). Does this mark a turning point where programmers start to become obsolete?

From a business perspective, one question trumps all of those, of course: What's in it for Google? I suspect that the company's hopes for this new App Inventor tool can be read from how they have beta-tested it so far. It's all about schools, as the New York Times reported, "User testing has been done mainly in schools with groups that included sixth graders, high school girls, nursing students and university undergraduates who are not computer science majors."

Similarly, if you apply for access to App Inventor via Google's registration form, you're prompted with questions like, "What is your school or affiliation?" or "How do you plan to use App Inventor for Android? K-12 Classroom, University Course, or After School Program?"

Winning hearts and minds, and winning them early. A wise strategy indeed. If nothing else, it will allow wannabee developers to get their feet wet, which might lead them to dive into development even further.

Google opens up App development to everyone

I haven't even mentioned the abundance of people out there dying to make the next great iPad app, but without the coding skills to do so. It seems everyone and their dog wants on that boat, and more than a few will look to hitch a ride with the big G.

But in contrast to Google's more open policy, Apple runs a far tighter, more exclusive ship (a slick, aluminum-plated yacht perhaps?) with Jobs and company reserving the right to jettison any apps that don't meet their relatively high standards.

We'll just have to wait and see how this platform war plays out. However, Android's recent jump in market share combined with Apple's App Store woes might very well be keeping Steve Jobs awake at night.

Maybe that's why he's sending all those late night emails?

For those of you who'd like to see a simple demo of Google App Inventor in action, watch the following video:

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3 Comments

I hate to say, crapps are nothing new. Several months ago I read a review that put down how few apps Android had compared to Apple. I pointed out that Apple has no less that 51 fart apps listed. that's a lot of crapp(s). :)

Raum Bances
14th July, 2010 @ 01:07 am PDT

"Apple's App Store woes..."

Aren't you guys going to correct this? The store wasn't hacked. The account information was obtained by phishing. Even a 100% unhackable site wouldn't be immune from phishing. Gullible users are always the weak link.

Gadgeteer
14th July, 2010 @ 04:44 am PDT

Apps that are good will be ranked/rated highly, and thus sort themselves out from crummy apps. This is a great move by Google. Making it possible for anybody to creat an app increases the chances that for any given an application need, you will be able to obtain an app that performs that function.

Nehemiah E. Spencer
14th July, 2010 @ 12:19 pm PDT
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