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Microservices Expo: Article

Google Puts $10m Bounty on Android Development

Google, as promised, put the Android SDK out in early access - along with a $10 million pot for the best apps

Google, as promised, put the Android SDK out in early access - along with a $10 million pot for the best apps written for its open Android mobile platform by third-party developers.

It said the platform would be open and it's going about proving it. It also needs the buzz - and a killer mobile app - for Android to hit a homerun.

The first $5 million will be paid out in $25,000 prizes for the continued development of the 50 most promising entries submitted between January 2 and March 3 2008 to the Android Developer Challenge I.

These 50 entries will then be winnowed down by the end of May to 20 finalists - 10 that get awards worth $275,000 each and another 10 that'll each get $100,000.

There'll also be another contest - Android Developer Challenge II - that starts after the first so-called Google phones become available in the second half of next year.

The judges will come from the members of the Android-backing Open Handset Alliance (IHA) that Google unveiled last week as well, it says, as technology and mobile experts from the industry in general.

Anybody can play this game - except for Google and IHA folk and developers who live in Cuba, Iran, Syria, North Korea, Sudan, and Myanmar (Burma) - because of US laws - or Italy or Quebec - because of cockamamie local restrictions.

Google says developers will retain intellectual property rights to their applications while granting Google a license to evaluate and test it for purposes of the contest as well as a license to display the application to promote the Android platform.

It suggest possible apps in:

· Social networking
· Media consumption, management, editing, or sharing, e.g., photos
· Productivity and collaboration such as email, IM, calendar, etc.
· Gaming
· News and information (weather, traffic, sports, stocks, etc.)
· Rethinking of traditional user interfaces
· Use of mash-up functionality
· Use of location based services
· Humanitarian benefits (monitoring and response for diseases, climate change, natural disasters, etc.)
· Applications in service of global economic development for the 3 billion people living on less than $2.00 per day

The SDK with its documentation, sample projects, development tools, emulator and libraries is at http://code.google.com/android/download.html.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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