Google just went ahead and launched an App Marketplace of their own. Hmm, strange, you may wonder what kind of apps they’ll be selling? Well, it’s easy – web apps. The first available apps are business oriented and already available for purchase. Now let’s get behind the storefront.
You can find the Google App Marketplace here. The stuff they’re selling is a bit ethereal – you may use it only as long as you’re connected to the Cloud. And I’m not talking the woolly, fluffy kind of cloud here, but the Google web cloud of servers that delivers web services and applications to users throughout the world.
Well, this Cloud just got more open – ready to accept third-party apps beside the ones Google manufactures for you.
For developers it’s a chance to sell code to millions of users – the stuff they thrive on. For Google – it’s a way to generate the needed application ecosystem for their upcoming Chrome OS plus they’ll be beta testing the whole process on people who are already using their web apps actively – the Google Apps users.
To buy apps from the Google AppStore you need a Google Apps account configured for one or more of your personal domains. No matter whether you’re a paying customer of the Google Apps for Business ($50/user per year) or a user of the standard free edition you will be able to purchase services and apps from the Marketplace and add them to your Apps account.
Developers, who are willing to join in the program, are promised a reportedly very easy building, distribution and installation process. In addition Google offers them a 25 million users community for a one-time participation fee of $100 (which is how much Apple charges). In the end developers keep 80% of the revenue from their apps (Apple AppStore developers get 70%).
Well, that’s about it for now. Opening a Cloud-based marketplace full of Cloud-based apps in preparation for a Cloud-based OS sounds like a practical move and I suspect that strategically, this announcement will turn out as important as the announcement of Apple’s AppStore back in the day. Happy sailing, Google!