Android pledges to make paid-apps popular in 2011

by Kristen Nicole

Google disappointed with Android app sales

The Android Market has made some big strides in the past year, adding thousands of apps to its repertoire and presenting itself as a viable platform for development. Yet Apple (AAPL) is still ahead of this game, having recently surpassed 10 billion downloaded apps, and reaping the benefits of its mature iTunes App Store marketplace.

That’s not making Google (GOOG) very happy, and Android platform manager Eric Chu discusses the company’s plans to encourage more paid app sales during the Inside Social Apps conference in San Francisco this week. A new in-app payment system is one goal towards Android’s marketplace enhancements, along with strategic partnerships beyond the limited service provider integration, which allows a user at least two options around making app purchases.

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Tablets, portals and more opportunities to make money

The tablet market is another opportunity for Google to push new features around updated payment methods, as Android tablets are already conjuring excitement amongst developer communities. A recent report released by Appcelerator and IDC Research shows 72 percent of survey respondents are “very interested” in developing for Android tablets in the coming year, with Android phones still taking 87 percent of this market as well.

These numbers should be encouraging Google to make systematic improvements for its developers, creating opportunities for all parties involved to generate some revenue.  Determining how this will play out in the end is a long and arduous process, but we’re already seeing progress being made. After a brief stint in the Android Market, the Kongregate Arcade app was banned by Google, though a few tweaks to its game-saving method have allowed the portal to return, according to Engadget.