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Perhaps you’re wondering why there’s been no full review of Amazon Cloud Player on Android.AppStorm? It’s because we’re waiting to see whether Amazon is going to be allowed to continue. Last week, the streaming music app Grooveshark was kicked off the Android Market, and we’re wondering whether the same thing will happen to Cloud Player.

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It’s been a good month for fans of Amazon and Android. Last week the Amazon Appstore was opened, and this week sees the launch of Amazon Cloud Player for Android, an app which lets you store your personal music collection in the cloud and access it on your phone, without having to connect to your computer’s library.

We’ve been expecting to see similar technologies from either Apple or Google for a long time, but there are still no clear signs on the horizon. So, has Amazon scooped the big two, or should we keep waiting for the manufacturers to get around to building their own services?

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This week sees the US launch of a new marketplace for Android apps: the Amazon Appstore.

Naomi Bush wrote about the new marketplace, and what it might mean for you, last month. Let’s take another look at it now that it’s up and running.
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Alien Dalvik: All Android, All the Way!

Android Market is second only to the Apple App Store when it comes to the number of apps listed for sale. This is a huge feat considering the troubles developers have to endure with the Android Market: a spotty payment system, unfettered piracy and poor promotion by Google. Still, the number of quality apps in the Android market is steadily increasing.

Recently Myriad, a popular mobile technology company, has announced that they have developed a solution that allows Android apps to run on other smartphone platforms like Blackberry OS and Meego. Let us take a look at how this technology could disrupt the Android Ecosystem. (more…)

Google are now selling ebooks through the Android Market. Check it out via this link. (If it goes to the Market homepage, then ebooks aren’t available in your country yet.)

On paper, this is not a big deal; Google have been selling ebooks through the Google eBookstore for months, and a free Android app to let you read them has been on the Market for just as long. But let’s look at the bigger picture…

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Nope, Google Buzz isn’t getting an update (at least, we don’t think so). Instead, Google is hosting an event in Mountain View today to show off what’s new in the Android ecosystem, including news and demos on their upcoming Honeycomb release. We expect to see extensive descriptions of Android’s 3.0 software and possibly news of an expected 2.4 release dubbed “Ice Cream” (or “Ice Cream Sandwich” depending on where you read). The event started at 10am PST, and will last approximately an hour and a half before the invitees get hands-on.

Honeycomb is Google’s tablet-based release of their popular Android smartphone platform, expected to launch on the Motorola Xoom earlier this year. Honeycomb also introduces video chat via Google Talk, tabbed browsing and support for dual-core processors.

The rumour mill also suggests Google might be officially announcing its streaming music service (a topic I covered in my first article here) and maybe even upgrades to the Android Market, including a web-based, desktop interface.

The event is now over. Check out the post to see the video and the transcript of our live tweets of the event.

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One of the things going for Android against iOS is the ability to try applications. You will have to pay for the app before downloading, but you can play with the app for 24 hours and if it is not up to your expectations, simply uninstall the app to get a refund. This refund policy helps users to evaluate the full version of an app instead of a crippled “lite” version.

A few weeks ago, Google revised this app refund window from 24 hours to 15 minutes, stating that most users who request a refund do so within minutes of purchase. After the jump we will be weighing in the pros and cons of this new refund policy.

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Apple, one of Google’s main rivals in the mobile (operating system) industry, is also the operator of the number one digital music store in the US. However, recent reports suggest Google may be planning its own attempt at breaking the market and reclaiming some share from the Cupertino crew. An alleged Gingerbread screenshot shows the ability to sync music with an Android handset, but the real question is whether it will be a success like Android itself, or a failure due to a lack of mainstream user adoption as was Wave.

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With Gingerbread the Android platform has been tweaked and improved to be more sleek to use, which should make it more user friendly and lower its learning curve for new users. Bundled in this latest update are a new design, a new software keyboard, better power management, higher performance, and increased support for the ever-improving hardware that phone manufacturers are building.

This update improves on an already polished version 2.2 (Froyo). And while its not a big update — like the much talked about Android 3.0 — it does bring with it many great tweaks and changes, as well as a few new welcome features.

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