Amazon App Store and Android Tablet in the Works?

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This information is all still in the early rumor phase, so take it with a grain of salt. There some loose talk that Amazon is working on its own version of an Android app store which has, in turn, led to speculation that Amazon may even be working its own Android tablet.

The app store rumor contains far more details: a 70/30 royalty split for developers (70% of each sale to the developer, 30% to Amazon), a $99 fee charged to developers to allow them to create apps (Apple charges the same), apps will need to be approved by Amazon and will only work on devices Amazon deems fit to run them, and apps sold through Amazon’s platform must cost the same if they’re offered through other channels (the official Android Market, for instance).

So this system would theoretically be more refined than the stock Android Market, which doesn’t charge developers a fee to create apps and doesn’t approve apps before they get put into the store. As a result, you may see higher-quality apps through Amazon’s app store, though they wouldn’t be available on just any Android device. And it’s likely that it wouldn’t be constrained to just apps—remember that Amazon sells e-books and downloadable music, TV shows, and movies, too.

The upside for developers would be greater visibility–apps can be featured on Amazon’s website—and it’d be easier for consumers to find these apps since the store wouldn’t be overrun with thousands of fart apps and TV show sound clip generators. Amazon’s excellent product ratings system, too, which culls reviews from actual owners of the products, would work nicely here.

Android purists likely won’t take kindly to how such a store flies in the face of the “openness” of the Android platform. However, a more polished and streamlined app store from a company like Amazon that has years of experience selling stuff to people might make it easier to woo people away from Apple products. If Apple’s platform is a wine bar, Android is a kegger. Maybe this Amazon platform could be the friendly pub that bridges the gap.

As for an Amazon-developed Android tablet, that’s not out of the realm of possibility at all and would make a perfect flagship device for Amazon to showcase its own app store. The company has experience building hardware devices with the Kindle, and an Amazon Android tablet would be a good way to extend the Kindle platform as well.

Again, keep in mind that all this information is in the early rumor stages. We’ll keep an eye on everything to see what, if anything, shakes out.

In other, more reliable news, Amazon has officially announced Kindle for the Web. It’s a web-based version of the Kindle software that allows people to read the first chapter of a book online before deciding to purchase it. Website owners can embed book samples on their sites and earn referral fees for and copies of the books that are sold.

More on Techland: Amazon Announces New $139 Kindle

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