Mar 26th, 2010

The concept that Google offers revenue sharing to carriers who have Google Apps pre-installed on their Android Phones has recently been brought to light by PaidContent.org and created quite the fuss over the interwebz. Why? I’m not quite sure.

For some reason the move is being explained as if its some sort of sneaky, undermining system. You could make that point… but it would be absolutely ludicrous. Android is a FREE and OPEN system that anyone can use on their devices and we’ve seen PLENTY of folks build hardware that don’t even have a TRACE of Google.

  • Want to include Android Market? No problem, we’ll even share revenue with you
  • Want to include Google Apps? We’d like that very much, and we’ll even share revenue with you
  • Want to work with another partner, like Yahoo, who will outbid us and have THEIR services pre-packaged on your devices for a set fee or a revenue sharing system? Be our guest – we’ll keep working on the Operating System itself so your Yahooified phone is the best it can be

androidpayGoogle was negotiating default search placement in mobile phones WELL before Android was on the table. They do it with the iPhone. They’ve done it with feature phones. Heck, they’ve done it with your desktop browser known as Mozilla Firefox.

In fact, I’m looking at this from a completely different angle than most people: if Google has to “bid” for default placement on phones with THEIR OWN operating system, then obviously they’re playing the “Open” game fair. Much more fair than Palm who claim they want to open things up but don’t allow any other manufacturers to touch their “secret sauce”.

So just a fair warning when you’re reading all these reports from across the web – don’t be surprised that Google is offering carriers money to include Google Apps on their Android Phones. Not only is this pretty much standard operating procedure, but it shows that Android is probably a lot more transparent than its critics give it credit for.

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