IPhone Store Takes Off; Will Android Pay The Price?

imageApple (NSDQ: AAPL) has not only been successful at selling millions of iPhones, but its application storefront has been a runaway hit, too. That could complicate life for Google’s Android, which is just now coming to market, as developers become too preoccupied with Apple to focus on another new platform.
Launched in July, the iPhone App store is available in 60 countries, and is stocked with about 8,000 games, social networking sites, and other reference tools. The number of apps is rapidly rising, jumping by 45 percent in the past month. Downloads aren’t too shabby either. In the first 100 days, users downloaded 200 million applications, some of them free, some for a fee. At that rate, Apple is likely to hit 1 billion in the first year — an accomplishment that took iTunes five years to achieve online. At a press briefing on Wednesday, Apple invited developers to showcase a number of the applications they’ll be launching in time for the holidays. In attendance was EA, which showed off the new game “Need for Speed,” Gameloft (EPA: GFT), which demonstrated “Ferrari GT Evolution,” an ad agency which created promotional apps for both Gap and Target, and also Handmark, ngmoco and Loopt. In conversations with the developers, what surprised me the most was the dedication that they had to the iPhone. In fact, many of them were so focused on the platform, they said it was unlikely that they would develop for any new platforms, and specifically Google’s Android…
It may be partly due to the economy — if a company has limited resources, logically it may be more selective about which platform it develops for. To be sure, this may have been a biased crowd, but it’s worth asking the question: Will developers stick to the iPhone because they know it works, and hold-off developing for Android, which may present a risk? Or will Google (NSDQ: GOOG) also have a chance at success? I asked Google