The (likely) future of the Android tablet app market

I must admit that I am something of a prostitute. I used to change phones quite frequently when I was at a GSM provider. Since I switched to Verizon and got the Droid X, I didn’t really feel the need to buy a new phone, nor would it be very easy or affordable to do so considering the significantly fewer number of devices to choose from. However, within a month I had a Viewsonic GTablet (review of that coming soon) and I just got an iPad today (and yes, I do feel a bit embarrassed when I look at the big Apple logo on the back, but hey).

However, one thing is clear, your wallet will be lost to the left and right not only for the upcoming Android tablets, but also for the sleek new apps that will accompany them.

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On GTablet, once I got the full market up and running, all my favorite apps scaled smoothly, unlike what Galaxy Tab users were reporting. They didn’t really take advantage of the extra resolution and screen real estate, but they performed the same way their phone variants did. There were no more rows in Pulse, or a sleek message board in Gmail, but they didn’t seem dull like the iPhone apps look on the iPad, either.

It is now clear that tablets are a different class of device; ideally, they will be more than just a charging device, but more replacements for laptops. Anyway, we are moving towards cloud computing, so sooner rather than later, storage space and RAM will be less of a concern. Plus, Android has attracted some good productivity app developers, so I’m expecting many more to come. The only problem will be the cost of the applications. We’re frowning right now when we think about the cost of Office product licenses, but somehow it feels more painful to shell out $ 10 for a similar product on the iPad (I haven’t, I’m just saying). I doubt that Honeycomb will unleash the full potential of what an Android tablet can be, but Google could at least integrate Google Docs more tightly into the system to begin with.

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The same goes for game developers. Angry Birds looked perfect on GTablet without an HD version. But I have no doubt that the developers will offer expensive versions for higher resolution background images and some code snippets to enlarge the visible area and take advantage of the resolution (I am not a developer, but I can’t imagine there is much more than that for make a game that is already available work on a tablet, at least without adding new features). So pack your wallets, at least you will be losing weight after the holidays.

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