Canalys tells Google to do more to encourage development of tablet-specific apps on Play Store

Almost half of the top 50 iPad apps are either unavailable or not optimised for tablets running on Google’s Android OS with a research firm calling on them to do more to attract developers.

Research carried out by Canalys showed that 30 per cent of the top 50 paid and free iPad apps were absent from the Google Play Store completely. Another 18 percent were available but not optimised for tablet use and offering just a smartphone app blown up onto a tablet screen.

“Quite simply, building high-quality app experiences for Android tablets has not been among many developers’ top priorities to date. That there are over 375,000 apps in the Apple App Store that are designed with iPad users in mind, versus just a fraction of this – in the low tens of thousands – available through Google Play, underscores this point,” said Tim Shepherd, Canalys Senior Analyst.

As just 52 per cent of the apps had Android versions that were both available on Google Play and optimised for use on tablets, Canalys believes the company should “do more to encourage greater number of developers to invest in delivering high-quality Android tablet apps quickly”.

Another disadvantage is that the six top paid titles on iOS that are among the 52 per cent are only available as ad-supported free versions on the Google Play Store – something that is to their detriment according to Canalys.

“While nominally free, set against a paid version of the app, ad-supported offerings typically deliver a poorer and often more limited user experience, sometimes taking a considerable toll on device battery life and often subjecting users to unskippable videos or other unpopular intrusions,” said Canalys Analyst Daniel Matte.

In order to make the Google Play ecosystem more attractive to consumers the company must to do more to build trust by encouraging them to register billing details and credit cards to reduce any hurdle to spending money on apps. Doing this, will in turn encourage developers to work on apps that are optimised for use on Android tablets and go further than just increasing the amount of tablets available.

Google’s Android OS continues to grow where smartphones are concerned and figures show that it now accounts for 79 per cent of the worldwide market as opposed to Apple’s 14.2 per cent.

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