App Inventor for Android, Good or Bad?

Yesterday, Google announced App Inventor, a WYSIWYG app development tool for Android.

Official Google Blog: App Inventor for Android

App Inventor aims at the non-developer user base who are assumed to want to build something but don’t want to/are afraid of code.

This is the same user base that mashup builders, HTML editors and countless tools have addressed, with mixed results.

It also aims at the Android beginner segment, made up of people new to development or new to Android.

But is it a good thing for Android?

On one hand, it opens up the platform to non-developers and fosters development on Android.

On the other, it means more apps of dubious quality and utility.

Personally, I don’t buy the argument that there’s this huge under-served market of wannabe developers. In my experience, non-developers don’t want to build apps, and if they do, they write code.

However, I do think App Inventor makes sense for Android beginners.

TechCrunch offers some thought.

What’s your take? Find the comments.




  1. One area where the AppStore model doesn't fit is with internal corporate apps. Meter readers, census takers, police and other emergency services. There's a lot of scope for privately built applications.

    Plus the more apps that appear in an App Store with a market of “one bloke and his mate”, the harder it will get to find the best. This offers a good base for a person to build an app, get it out to friends / colleagues etc. And then, only if it is commercial, do they make it accessible to the general market.

  2. Good points. About 12-18 months ago, I heard from one of the teams doing iPhone apps that Apple was building App Stores for enterprises to accomodate internal apps like the Oracle People2 app Clayton built.

    Obviously never happened.

    My guess is that Apple will stay away from enterprise bc of control issues, and as you say, Android will fill the vacuum.

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