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google’s $10 million “android” prizes November 12, 2007

Posted by KG in design, econ, media, news, tech.
Tags: , , , , , , ,

tyler cowen on the economics of prizes:


Today Google put out a sneak peek at Android in the form of an SDK — a software developers kit that will help programmers get used to making things for Android phones.

The company also announced $10 million in prizes for developers who build great Android programs. The Android Developers Challenge offers 50 prizes of $25,000 each for the best programs submitted by March 3; some among those 50 will then go on to compete for greater prizes of $100,000 and $275,000.

Though this isn’t a huge sum for Google — we’re talking fewer than 15,000 shares of Google stock here — the prize is sure to spur at least a few clever comp-sci grads to drop everything and build Android’s first great app. The third-party apps will be crucial to the system’s success, because judging by the video of a couple of prototype phones that Google put out today (see above), Android, as it stands now, looks rather bland.


We welcome all types of applications but are looking to reward innovative, useful apps that make use of Android’s capabilities to deliver a better mobile experience. Here are some suggested areas of focus to get you started:

  • Social networking
  • Media consumption, management, editing, or sharing, e.g., photos
  • Productivity and collaboration such as email, IM, calendar, etc.
  • Gaming
  • News and information
  • Rethinking of traditional user interfaces
  • Use of mash-up functionality
  • Use of location-based services
  • Humanitarian benefits
  • Applications in service of global economic development
  • Whatever you’re excited about!


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