Motorola's MOTODEV Program Signals Future Android Smartphones

It's no surprise to hear that Motorola is also considering selling a portion of its soul to Android. In fact, we kind of already knew it had a thing for Google-sourced mobile operating system. But now the company is getting serious in a time where other handset makers are doing the same, and we'd surmise that this is happening not a moment too soon. With companies such as HTC and Sony Ericsson already delivering and/or planning Android-based handsets, Moto must get itself into that same category if it wants to be considered a serious player in the smartphone space.

As the company continues to struggle in a post-RAZR world, it's hoping to jump start development of Android phones with its new MOTODEV program. The iniative is the company's first related to this OS, and it includes a new App Accelerator Program as well as MOTODEV Studio for Android Beta. MOTODEV will offer developers early access to a new suite of Google Android developer tools and programs, along with the opportunity to attend the next MOTODEV Summit in San Diego, CA, on October 6, for advanced training and information-gathering. The program has a simple goal, really: to to accelerate the development of applications to be used on Motorola's mobile devices using the Android operating system scheduled to ship later this year.

You read that right: Motorola should have at least two Android devices on the market later this year, and considering that we're already in the second half of 2009, that means these devices will be out in short order. Christy Wyatt, Vice President, Software Platforms and Ecosystem, Motorola, had this to say about the new push into Android:
"Motorola is focused on helping our global network of best-in-class developers create, deploy and successfully market their Android applications to ultimately unleash greater innovation into the mobile application development space. We believe Android and open software has the freedom and flexibility to foster innovation, accelerate time to market, and deliver the most personal and customized mobile experiences for consumers."
If you're interested in getting your hands dirty here, have a listen at this: the App Accelerator Program will give devs the ability to submit their applications to Motorola and leverage the opportunity to distribute through a variety of channels, including carrier stores, the Android Market and third-party distributors. In addition, the program will specifically offer developers:
  • Early access to tools, technical specs, documentation and other development support resources.
  • Exclusive pre-release access to upcoming Motorola devices for testing and debugging.
  • Direct access to Motorola's developer support engineers via private discussion boards.
  • Maximum market exposure for applications as soon as new mobile devices ship to users.
We're excited to see Motorola so interested in making sure they really nail the Android launch. In many ways, this is make-it-or-break-it for the company. None of its current smartphones can hold a candle to the iPhone, Pre or G1--the only hope it has to compete in today's heated smartphone realm is with a solid Android phone or two. We've got a feeling they'll get it right with so much planning going on behind the scenes.