Amazon Is Reportedly Planning an Android Apps Store

Along with everything else that can be sold, Amazon.com is now planning to sell Android applications. According to a story in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal and elsewhere, the giant online retailer is putting the final touches on an online applications store to compete with Apple’s App Store and Google’s Android Market.

The App Store is the leader, a one-stop shop of more than 250,000 apps for Apple’s mobile devices, and Google’s marketplace has become the leading supplier of apps for the Android platform. Google’s store has about 80,000 apps, but the search giant doesn’t screen and select apps, as Apple does.

30-70 Percent Split

The Amazon store’s name and launch date aren’t yet known, but the Journal says the company will take the same 30 percent fee of sales as Apple and Google do. Supporting that deal structure, the newspaper said it has seen an “Amazon document for developers.” The document reportedly also includes the condition that an app cannot be offered at a lower price elsewhere.

Amazon has declined to comment.

The retailer starts with an enormous infrastructure and ecosystem for selling things, including digital things. Apple built its App Store on the iTunes infrastructure, and Google has largely had to start from scratch. Others, such as various carriers and device makers, have also started app stores, but none yet rival Apple or Google’s. Verizon Wireless, for instance, is planning to enable its V CAST music and apps store for the Android platform. Best Buy is also considering adding one.

Avi Greengart, an analyst with industry research firm Current Analysis, said, “Amazon has rather deftly made the transition between physical sales of music and books, to sales of digital versions.” Now, he said, it is continuing that strategy by making the transition from boxed sets of software to downloads.

Android Fragmentation?

He noted that Apple’s approach…

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