Here’s an interesting number to ponder over.
Android 3.0 catalog still stalled below 100 apps (electronista)
Android 3.0 and the few (one) tablet it currently powers (Motorola Xoom) is in an interesting situation. Android itself has been around since October 2008 when the T-Mobile G1 launched in the U.S. Android was an uninteresting platform for most people until the Motorola Droid appeared in November 2009. Tablets based on various versions of Android have been appearing since early 2010 (or thereabouts). Many of these are not Google approved and do not have access to the Android Market and other Google provided features. The apparently popular Samsung Galaxy Tab appeared in late 2010 using Android 2.x which was designed for use on a phone and not a tablet (according to Google) but was a Google approved device. The Motorola Xoom has only been available for a few weeks now. So, it seems a little early to judge the Android OS 3.0 app market for tablets.
Apple’s iPad only a thousand or so apps when it launched in April 2010 despite a hugely successful iPhone app market. Today, the iPad’s app market is still not as large as the iPhone’s but can safely be said to be very successful. Still, 100 is a very small number. The Android tablet is having a tough time getting out the gate much as Android 1.x phones did for more than a year after it launched (13 months).
There definitely needs to be more Android OS 3.0 based tablets and, more importantly, at more affordable prices. Amazon’s recent launch of their Android Appstore will probably help convince a lot of developers to create apps and get them on the market. Near future developments with ebook readers from Barnes & Noble and Amazon becoming more tablet-like may also spur development. This is especially true for B&N’s Nook color which is already powered by a hidden Android engine.