Flipboard for Android: Coming Soon (as Long as You Buy a Galaxy S III)

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[UPDATE: if you’re excited about Flipboard for Android but don’t want to buy a Galaxy S III, you won’t have to wait that much longer. A Flipboard representative e-mailed to tell me that the app will be coming to other Android devices at a yet-to-be-determined date this summer. Great news for Android fans.]

If you’d asked me a few weeks ago if I’d consider dumping my iPhone 4S for an Android phone, I would have said “Maybe — if Instagram and Flipboard were available for Android.”

Well, Instagram for Android launched a month ago. And now Flipboard, the amazing and influential social media app, is headed for Android, too. But as SlashGear’s Ben Kersey reports, it’ll only land on one phone at first: Samsung’s new Galaxy S III.

Samsung isn’t saying how long the Galaxy will have dibs on Flipboard; presumably we’re talking about a period of a few months at most before the app is available on Google Play. But even a brief period of exclusivity is a coup for Samsung, and probably a smart move. It certainly makes the Galaxy S III more appealing to me, at least — and I’ll bet that it’s an app that takes good advantage of the phone’s 4.8″ screen.

Here’s SlashGear’s video demo with my friend Chris Davies:

[vodpod id=ExternalVideo.1018038&w=425&h=350&]

For Flipboard, debuting on one phone may make sense for technical reasons as well as strategic ones. It’s a very carefully designed application. Off the top of my head, I’m not entirely sure how it’ll deal with Androidland, a place where there are all sorts of phones with all kinds of screens at a bevy of different resolutions. Making Flipboard for Android great on one handset is going to be easier than making it shine on every handset.

Whatever the logic behind the Galaxy/Flipboard deal, it’s yet more evidence of Android’s inherently fragmented nature.