back to article Google Android Market fee favours big brands

Andrew Kerry, head of the company behind the Andy Pad cut-price Android tablet, has coughed to implementing the Android Market on his product without Google's permission. But, he insists, the move was forced upon him by what he claims is a tacit "tie up" between Google and "big brands" in the tablet space that has "strangled …


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  1. Jim 48
    Thumb Down

    It was also confirmed on the forum and nobody mentioned that it's not the official. This makes be glad I won't for a Hannspad instead, especially as the AndyPad reviews haven't been glowing.

  2. Jon 84

    Google need to make up their mind

    Do they want a broad and open ecosystem or a controlled proprietary structure?

  3. DrXym Silver badge

    Why would Google do this?

    It's one thing to demand devices comply to some level of compatibility, but to demand money? I hope not. After all they cut of 30% of sales plus another cut from all the advertising revenue that free apps would push at people. Seems to me that Google should be handing out these apps like free sweeties to any compliant device.

    1. Oli Wright

      Interesting bit at the end here:

      "Once you've built a compatible device, you may wish to include Android Market to provide your users access to the third-party app ecosystem. Unfortunately, for a variety of legal and business reasons, we aren't able to automatically license Android Market to all compatible devices. To inquire about access about Android Market, you can contact us."

      I'd quite like to know if there's anything beyond the monetary side of a license (especially anything technical) that prevents the automatic licensing of the Market.

      I didn't realise they charged for the market for device makers (honestly hadn't seen that mentioned anywhere before ...). Ad revenue for Google isn't guaranteed on free apps btw as devs aren't limited to AdMob as a provider. There is a one off $25 dev registration fee though.

  4. jj_0

    Tweet-based decisionmaking

    Anyone who buys this based on a confirmation in a Tweet deserves what he gets...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Its still on their website under support/apps

      "Step 1 - Android Market

      To install apps on the Android Market, go onto the Android Market, select an option- Applications, Games, or search.

      Step 2 - Android Market

      Select the chosen app and tap ‘Install’.

      Details about the app, functionalities and other information will load, and if the requested permissions are as expected, tap ‘OK’."

      I would expect after reading that to find market on the device.

  5. a_been
    Thumb Down

    Since when did Google owe him a lunch?

    or anything else for that matter?

  6. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

    I didn't know that.

    Maplin has had Android 1.x and 2.x tablet devices that aren't phones and, according to forums, have required user hacking of doubtful legality in order to get apps from Android Market. It's also apparently been an issue with CyanogenMod releases of Android OS.

    But I thought it was on the basis that Google doesn't want to be associated with not-phone tablets running 2.x - I got the original Samsung Galaxy Tab, which -is- a phone and everything's fine... well, I think I'm an approved OS update behind, and the front screen is liable to freeze up for an increasingly long delay from time to tme, unless I reboot. Even worse, this may be the latest release. But my phone SIM isn't 3G or internet so it may be a sub-optimal configuration. But anyway...

    I did not know that Google is also licensing Android Market to device manufacturers for a fee. A fee that Andy Pad can't afford.

    I suppose that this is Google's software and they can treat the legally closed parts of it as they please, and also they don't want it put on devices where it isn't satisfactory and it makes Google look like a villain for that - but it still looks like being mean.

    1. DZ-Jay

      @Robert Carnegie

      I thought it was common knowledge. I know El Reg has mentioned it before: Google provide the Android OS for free, but retain control to Google-branded apps and the Android Market, which require a license. The license is not free and further requires Google's approval of the device.


  7. Syren Baran

    @El Reg

    "Kerry's comments imply Google wants rather a lot of cash for the rights to Android Market"

    Did you send a mail to Google requesting more information on that topic? If thats true the new slogan for Android should be:

    Android, the free and open OS*

    *fees and restrictions apply where possible

    1. flibblesan

      Android is open

      The Android operating system is fully open source. The issue is with the Google Apps, which the Market is part of. These are not freely distributable nor open source.

      1. DZ-Jay

        Re: Android is open

        It may be "open" in that technical sense, but it is not what is implied or expected. There is Android the "OS" and Android the ecosystem/platform. One may be useless without the other.

        In this sense it's the same as those toys that claim:

        "Batteries not required!"*

        *A charging transformer is required for power, sold separately.

        It's inaccurate at best, disingenuous at worse.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Would people stop mixing up the OS and other services please. Similar complaints arose when Google limited access to the movie rental service to rooted devices and were equally daft. I really don't understand this assumption that once a company mentions the word "Open", everything that they do should be open! The Market is a service on top of Android. While I'm a little disappointed to see that Google are charging for manufacturers to license the market (I thought it was only limited by ability to pass the compatability tests), I'll get over that.

          As for what is "expected", well, that's down to you chum, not them.

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