Today, Google hosted a live event to unveil its much-anticipated tablet operating system, Honeycomb, as well as a web-based Android app market. Marketers might take these developments – and the high levels of consumer buzz surrounding them – as a cue that it's time to get serious about mobile content and mobile app advertising.
At the beginning of the event, Google's Andy Rubin said, “It's no secret that tablets are a force in the marketplace.” No – it's no secret at all. Brafton has reported that tablet shipments are poised to exceed PC shipments this year. We've also reported that the mobile app market is rapidly growing, and brands that offer consumers branded apps may find that Honeycomb and the new Android app site make it easy for the growing number of Android users to discover their brands.
The company announced its new Android Market Website, which allows users to purchase apps on the general web as well as via their devices. Then, it announced a new Android functionality: in-app purchases for web developers. Many marketers and developers have long been waiting for this service, as it could help their brands generate real dollars from virtual stores.
Google's new Android 3.0 software for tablets seems like it will also up the ante for mobile content marketing. The system renders web pages beautifully and makes it easy for users to navigate the mobile web. During the event, Google execs demonstrated a free CNN news app and its sharing/user-generated options as an example of Honeycomb's quality.
More news apps might be in store for Google's mobile devices. As Brafton has reported, news app developments are on the rise, and others have reported that Google is rumored to be developing a digital newsstand. Marketers looking for a way to enter the app market might consider offering branded news content to on-the-go consumers.