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

Posted by KG in design, econ, media, news, tech.
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tyler cowen on the economics of prizes:

machinist.salon.com:

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.

google:

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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