In a large scale challenge to developers on Monday, Google has released a preview of the Google TV add-on for the Android Software Development Kit. With the formal release of the Honeycomb update growing ever closer, Google invites developers to build new Android Apps for TV, optimize existing apps for TV and distribute it all through the Android Market: give them the tools and they will develop!
The add-on doesn’t contain all of Google TV’s features, but it is enough to enable developers to emulate Google TV and build apps using standard Android Software Development Kit tools. Using the add-on, developers can test their apps to determine if they would be a good fit for TV or whether they will require fixes to establish compatibility. Google is also publishing user interface guidelines to help with tough topics such as designing apps that work well across multiple devices and how Google TV UI elements differ from other Android devices.
Google is releasing this add on early in the hopes of inspiring developers interested in adding to the limited Google TV listings of compatible apps. The move is unsurprising to those who switched to the leaked beta version of Honeycomb and found little app compatibility to speak of: the fact is that Honeycomb on Google TV will be a huge disappointment if more offerings aren’t added soon. We will keep our fingers crossed that some worthy parties will rise to the challenge!
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