July 31, 2014

Will New Devices Fragment the Android Market?

android_market_bagWill the introduction of new Android devices fragment the Android Market?   I suppose it’s possible, but not probable.

As companies like INQ hint at their own take on the experience and Cole Brodman acknowledges the shortcomings of the Android Market if there is fragmentation, it’s likely to be in how it appears on handsets.

So far, one the physical differences between Android handsets is screen and pixel size.  With the HTC Tattoo gearing up for release, will developers have to also worry about how their apps work on both capacitive and resistive touch screens?  What about other form factors?

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The T-Mobile G1 and the Motorola Cliq  sport full QWERTY’s and we already know apps play well with track balls,  soft keyboards, and touch screens.  However, way back in 2007, Android was shown on a device that resembled a 1st generation BlackBerry Curve and other low-to-mid level phones.  Now we could be looking at fragmentation – Writing apps to take advantage of specific hardware.

Just how specific are we talking?  Will Android Market have device specific apps?  For instance, if I went into Market and look for NitroDesk could it be identified by “NitroDesk – Cliq” and/or “NitroDesk – Tattoo”.  Nah…that’s way too much confusion for the casual smart phone buyer.

So will new devices fragment Android Market?  App differentiation maybe, but fragmentation no.