In a discussion with Android app developers at the Inside Social Apps conference on Tuesday, according to Forbes, Android platform manager Eric Chu revealed Google's dissatisfaction with current rates of premium app purchases, citing a number of factors contributing to the low figures. The key issues were outlined and addressed in a roadmap set to change the state of the Android Market in the forthcoming year. While details were somewhat thin on the ground, Chu was keen to stress that plans are in the early stages right now.
First up is in-app payments. Introduced to the iPhone a year ago, in-app payments will be making their way to the Android platform this year in a bid to get users more accustomed to the idea of spending money on Android apps. Google is also hoping to add more carriers (along with AT&T) to its list of service providers supporting carrier billing. Carrier billing, as the name suggests, allows users to have app purchases charged to their phone bill, rather than through an entirely separate system.
A human team is working right now to weed through the Market and remove any apps in violation of Google's terms of service. More investments will be made into the team, and Google are also planning to tweak the algorithms responsible for promoting apps to help users find apps they are more likely to be interested in.
Finally, Google will be incorporating HTML5 into Android as a new way to get developers involved in the platform. While this wasn't elaborated on, it could turn out to be an innovative way to get experienced web developers developing apps for the mobile market. With the mobile app market estimated to be worth over $17 billion by next year, it is apparent Google is becoming serious about taking a slice of the pie for themselves, and these changes may just be the beginning of a focused effort to improve Android profitability.