Jul 24th, 2009

Today, Motorola issued a Press Release proclaiming their Android aspirations are in full swing, titling the publication “Motorola Opens Doors for Accelerated Development on Android”. That is exactly the tone of voice we like to hear, Moto. The announcement of new Android development resources through their Motorola Development Program – MOTODEV – hopes to foster added innovation in the Android space with regards to the manufacturers products:


Motorola today announced the launch of advanced Android development resources through MOTODEV, including a new App Accelerator Program and MOTODEV Studio for Android Beta. MOTODEV will offer developers early access to a new suite of Google Android developer tools and programs, along with the opportunity to attend the next MOTODEV Summit in San Diego, CA, on October 6, for advanced training and information-gathering. The program is intended to accelerate the development of applications to be used on Motorola’s mobile devices using the Android operating system scheduled to ship later this year.

A couple things about the above COULD be troubling:

  • October 6th
  • Intended to accelerate the development of applications to be used on Motorola’s mobile devices using Android

I know that we’re looking at a holiday release schedule for Motorola’s Android Phones (Motorola Calgary, Motorola Morrison, Motorola Heron) but if their “head start” begins on October 6th and they’re expecting developers to build and submit applications to THEM for approval and inclusion on handsets, then is a 2009 launch reasonably acceptable? Good question if you ask me – but then again I’m the one who asked it.


In regards to the second point, the question seems to be how “open” Motorola’s Android Phones will be. Thankfully they (at least partially) clear that up:

Through this program, select developers will have the ability to submit their applications to Motorola and leverage the opportunity to distribute through a variety of channels, including carrier stores, the Android Market and third-party distributors. In addition, the program will specifically offer developers:

  • Early access to tools, technical specs, documentation and other development support resources.
  • Exclusive pre-release access to upcoming Motorola devices for testing and debugging.
  • Direct access to Motorola’s developer support engineers via private discussion boards.
  • Maximum market exposure for applications as soon as new mobile devices ship to users.

It sounds as if Motorola will offer additional APIs and frameworks to extend the Android framework even further by utilizing their own resources. I like how the distribution model includes Android Market and how they’ll offer developers “maximum market exposure” – perhaps Motorola will offer something similar to the T-Mobile AppPack where they’ll highlight and neatly package applications they feel consumers would want right off the bat.

But still, “carrier stores” is a little bit concerning and there is a BIG RED FLAG going up in my brain. And the “BIG RED” part is no coincidence – yesterday I feared the Verizon Wireless Android Phone would be severely gimped. Does this suggest Motorola will be the partner in crime or are they merely covering all their bases so people like me don’t draw any conclusions?

There are different flavors of Android ranging from the Google Experience handsets to completely customized versions. Motorola has 3 Android phones in the works (that we know of) and I can’t help but think we’ll get a variety of flavors. And I fear that the “customized version” will be a “gimped version” that heads to Verizon Wireless with applications available in the “Carrier Store” that are build using the MOTODEV Android Acceleration Program. Please… say it ain’t so.

Registration for the summit begins August 12th and you can sign up here. The Press Release also notes that developers in the program may have access to upcoming handsets to help debug and whatnot – if you get your hands on one make sure you hit up our TIP LINE… we are happy to keep our communication confidential and our sources anonymous!

UPDATE: Just found this video posted by MOTODEV YouTube Channel YESTERDAY!