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Amazon launching its own Android app store? (update: tablet too?)

Chris Ziegler
09.27.10
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This sounds like madness to us, but take it for what you will: TechCrunch is reporting via some tipsters that Amazon is preparing to launch its own Android app store, of all things. Revenue split is rumored to be "the greater of 70 percent of the purchase price or 20 percent of the List Price as of the purchase date," which is pretty strange wording -- this "List Price" concept is apparently designed to prevent you from undercutting pricing with other services -- and there'll be a $99 fee to gain entry, which is pretty standard. Apps will be required to use Amazon DRM and could be featured on Amazon's site, which is potentially a pretty big upside considering the kind of traffic that bad boy gets. As TechCrunch notes, a particularly interesting blurb in the alleged terms states that "[Amazon has] sole discretion to determine all features and operations of [programs] and to set the retail price and other terms on which [they] sell Apps," implying that pricing is their call -- not yours -- and they've got some say in how your app's going to work and what it's going to do.

Clearly we're missing something here, since they're starting with zero market share, the Android Market is the obvious choice for consumers, and there are some really odd terms -- and Bezos isn't a dummy -- so we'll hold out and see where this goes. After all, with Google apparently actively reigning in devices by lording Market access over manufacturers' heads, there might actually be some room for third parties to get some traction here over the long term.

Update: TechCrunch is now throwing in a rumored Amazon tablet at no extra charge. Could launch beside the app store if its source is correct. If.

Source: TechCrunch
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