My pick for the biggest Android app paradigm shifter in 2010 is Angry Birds for Android. Angry Birds is, of course, the hugely popular game that has sold millions of copies for the iPhone at 99 cents each. But, Rovio did something very interesting when it released its Android version of the game: It made the Android game free with advertisement support. The result? Millions of Android users discovered the joys of being challenged by Angry Birds’ onscreen catapulting puzzles. And, Rovio produced the biggest and, perhaps, only giant Android app hit so far. Moreover, their advertisements actually provided a tidy revenue stream. The in-game small on-screen ads have recently been supplemented by full screen video ads that are shown between (often unexepectedly) between gaming sessions sponsored by industry giants like Microsoft (advertising Bing).
Rovio’s Angry Birds for Android is my 2010 paradigm shifting pick because of the way it successfully adapted to Android users’ general resistance to paying for apps.