Todor Pichurov

Google, Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) Gives Android Developers New Toys

by Todor Pichurov December 13, 2013
GOOG_chart.pngIn a recent announcement, Google, Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG, GOOG message board) informed that a new set of Android developer tools has been released. The shiny new coder toys will both expand the toolkit for making games as well as add new cloud features.

The first major addition is LiquidFun, a 2D physics library for C++ that allows for fluid particle simulations. Now open-source, the library's capabilities were showcased in a short demo video. Another big addition is a Google Play plug-in for the Unity engine. The plug-in allows for the integration of achievements and leaderboards - always a hit with players, as well as cloud saving for games running on Unity. Considering the huge popularity of Unity across all platforms as a low-cost, yet efficient and adaptable engine, the new features will be a godsend for developers.

Google is doing well to cater to its Android developer base as the Google Play store is turning into a sizable contributor to the company's coffers. Projections for 2013 list a $1.3 billion slice of the company's annual revenue coming from the Android store. GOOG takes a flat-rate 30% cut from all revenues generated through the store, which included both payments for premium games, as well as in-app purchases from freemium titles such as smash hit Candy Crush Saga.

GOOG_Playlogo.jpgGoogle will also be adding new game genre categories to its Android store in February next year, so it will be possible to list games as 'role playing', 'simulation' and 'educational'. The new categories strengthen the notion highlighted by the announcement that games are not for hardcore players anymore, with 75% of all Android mobile device users playing games.

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