Google goes Mobile

"mobile, mobile, mobile - it's probably the most wide open space out there right now." Eric Schmidt1

Google Android is a mobile operating system targeting the mobile device market launched in November 2007 with the backing of the Open Handset Alliance. A year later, the first mobile handset supported by Android was introduced in the United States on the T-Mobile network. Grotnes2 describes the Android platform as "a complete mobile phone software stack including an operating system, middleware and key applications".

Grotnes2 further describes Android as a "platform that other applications can be built on top of". The 'open' nature of Android allows non Google developers to develop software for the platform which is a selling point for the system compared to its competitors. The Android Developer Challenge3 is designed to encourage third party developers to build applications for Android with a total prize fund of $10 million dollars and a first prize of $100,000 for round 2 of the challenge. There are ten development categories to develop apps for:

  • Education/Reference
  • Games: Casual/Puzzle
  • Games: Arcade/Action
  • Social Networking
  • Lifestyle
  • Productivity/Tools
  • Media
  • Entertainment
  • Travel
  • Misc

Canalys4 reported that Android had secured 3.5% share of the Smartphone market and analyst are predicting a sharp rise in market share in the next couple of years, Gartner5 predicts that with help of Google's cloud computing based projects, Android is estimated to become the number 2 market leader in the Smartphone market by 2012.

1. Europa-Universtat Viadrina Frankfurt. Strategy of Google in 2009 Case Study presented by: ChloƩ LEHMANN & Roman HONTAR 2009. [Online] Available from: [Accessed 30 Nov 2009].
2. GROTNES, R. Standardisation as open innovation: two cases from the mobile industry. Information Technology & People, 2009, 22 (4) pp 367-381. [Online] Available from:;jsessionid=68BDB6778A35BD512C8965D82CDE4CDD?contentType=Article&contentId=1823722 [Accessed 02 Jan 2010].
3. Google Code. Android Developer Challenge. [Online] Available from: [Accessed 20 Jan 2010]
4. Apple Insider. Canalys Q3 2009: iPhone, RIM taking over smartphone market. [Online] Available from: [Accessed 20 Jan 2010].
5. Computerworld Mobile & Wireless. Android to grab No. 2 spot by 2012, says Gartner. 6 Oct 2009. [Online] Available from: [Accessed 21 Jan 2010].
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