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12/20/2007
03:43 PM
Stephen Wellman
Stephen Wellman
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Are Google iPhone Apps Also Beta Apps For Android?

It seems that lots of Googlers are really into the iPhone, including Googler-in-Chief Eric Schmidt. Google has been launching new mobile applications specifically for the iPhone, just as the company also prepares its own Android platform. Is there a hidden connection between the iPhone and Google Android?

It seems that lots of Googlers are really into the iPhone, including Googler-in-Chief Eric Schmidt. Google has been launching new mobile applications specifically for the iPhone, just as the company also prepares its own Android platform. Is there a hidden connection between the iPhone and Google Android?Blogger Jon Bradford thinks Google is using the iPhone to beta test (or in Google's case, is that pre-beta?) new applications for its Android system. But what do the iPhone and Google Android have in common?

According to Bradford, it's WebKit, the open source browser platform. You see WebKit is the framework for, of all things, Apple's Safari browser. It also happens to be the framework for the browser in Google's Android platform.

Hence, what we may be actually looking at is Google's mobile services which will be available on Android from its launch, effectively putting iPhone users through the pain of finding the flaws.

Could this be right? Is Google using the iPhone to test Android?

So for those who have looked jealously on the new interfaces being developed for iPhone, have a little patience, because I think what you are looking at is Google's services for Android.

This is interesting, especially given the revelation earlier this week that Android doesn't work. Here is what my colleague Eric Zeman had to say:

This is an early stumble for Google. Google needs the developers to be happy with the SDK if it expects the platform to gain any legs in the market. If they can't get applications to work because the coding is all messed up, Android might be a very short-lived experiment or fail to have the impact Google hopes for. The developers who WSJ spoke with also said Google has not been very responsive to their complaints.

Many of our readers chimed in, claiming that early SDKs often don't work. As one reader, Roq, wrote:

Android is due a year from now. I wouldn't be too worried about early bugs if I were you. It's par for the course.

Maybe we shouldn't be worried that Android isn't yet up to par. Maybe Google is working on it right now -- and all those iPhone fans out there are also working on it too (without even knowing it).

What do you think? Are all those new Google applications for the iPhone really just Android apps in disguise?

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