Monday, February 16, 2009

Google Supports Intellectual Property Rights

Google gets it. Sometmes it makes sense to go open source and give away your product, and sometimes it doesn't.

In October 2008, Google announced that they would provide the source code for their new phone operatng system, Android:, we're making what might just be the most exciting announcement of all: we and our Open Handset Alliance partners have now released the source code for Android. There's a huge amount of code and content there, so head over to for all the details.
However, it is allowing Android developers the right to charge for their apps. and maintain intellectual property rights with regard to the products it offer. Gphoneholic reports and then explains:

What does this mean for you? Presumably we’ll be getting some high quality apps from developers that aren’t keen on giving anything away. I expect we’ll see many of the apps on 3rd-party stores (like SlideME, AndAppStore, Android Guys, Handango, etc.) will make appearances on the Android Market now. To compete with Google, those other stores are going to have to increase the incentive for developers perhaps through lower fees (however, Google’s rates are not outragous) or by utilizing other forms of payment from users, since the Android Market will only use Google Checkout for processing transactions.

Get ready for more apps, and to pay for them.
And Google locks it all down in their developer agreement:

...The Market will allow you to protect your Products so that users may not share Products with other users or devices...Each party shall own all right, title and interest, including without limitation all intellectual property rights, relating to its Brand Features. Except to the limited extent expressly provided in this Agreement, neither party grants, nor shall the other party acquire, any right, title or interest (including, without limitation, any implied license) in or to any Brand Features of the other party.

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