– droidcon Berlin7th - 10th April 2013
For the fifth time droidcon was held in Berlin and the evolution of droidcon hasn’t stopped. New venue due the number of attendees still growing in 2012, spread over four(!) days including the hackathon, new elements like our start-up track together with the element attendees liked since the beginning made a new challenge and it was another success.
Up to 750 attendees per day had the choice between a record number of talks and numerous special offerings from the areas start-up, gaming and hacking.
For the first time the conference program, the core of droidcon, covered two days with a total of 75 talks. Following an opening address given by Cornelia Yzer, Berlin’s senator for economy, technology and research, Prof. Kai Rannenberg of Goethe University Frankfurt discussed why Android devices are involved in less commercial transactions although their market share is much higher than that of iOS devices. His finding: The Android ecosystem lacks standardisation, and transparency of how apps handle individual data is too low. As a way out he proposed to establish a rating system for the privacy of apps and display the ratings in app stores.
In contrast, the Taiwan-based German Blogger Sascha Pallenberg foresees a bright future for Android developers anyway, because, as he said, the system increasingly evolves beyond the area of telephones and tablets. – Examples, like Fords App Sync technology for connecting smartphones with in-car information and communication systems, could be seen at droidcon.
Regarding the market share of Android, Pallenberg criticised the well-established analyst companies for having ignored the Chinese market for over a year now, although it is dominated by roughly 100 million Android tablets. According to Pallenberg, the popular assumption that Apple’s Ipad is the best-selling tablet is plain wrong.
Further highlights: The Amsterdam-based Fairphone initiative reported about plans to launch an Android smartphone for about 300 Euros that features a widget-based user interface and is manufactured and traded under fair conditions. Philipp Kandal, CTO and co-founder of navigation company Skobbler, spoke about „Monetisation Hacks“ – ways to make money with apps – and received rave reviews on Twitter. The Russian company Yandex introduced the One Platform Foundation, which is slated to establish standards for application meta-data and in-app payment. Raimund Genes of security specialists Trendmicro warned of increasing malware risks; he clearly opposed statements by Google regarding Android security which he said were too optimistic. Andlabs from Munich launched their multiplayer framework „Lounge“. And Matthias Krebs of Berlin-based Digiesemble, which make professional music on smartphones and tablets, sees music apps like Groove Grid as a new class of instruments with the potential to change the way people make music.
On the two days before the conference 200 developers gathered for a hackathon at first, followed by the traditional droidcon bar camp. As a novelty on the bar camp day, a whole track of talks addressed particularly start-up companies. Entrepreneurs, among them the former Intershop founder Stephan Schambach (who is now with Demandware), Christoph Räthke of Berlin Startup Academy, and delegates of several venture capital firms as well as of Hubraum, the corporate fund of Deutsche Telekom, introduced developers into topics like app marketing and choosing investors.
In addition, eleven developers presented their apps in brief demo sessions to a jury of investors and experienced founders. Chosen as the winner was Pockets United, an app allowing groups of people, for example roommates or carpools, to share and automatically clear collective costs. Runner-up was Shirtagram, a solution for printing individual pictures on shirts, mugs etc. The music app Groove Grid came in on third place. – And on the evening of the first conference day 50 droidcon attendees used the opportunity to acquaint themselves with the multiplayer game Ingress, being developed by the Google branch Niantic, and applied their newly achieved knowledge right away to a game in the public space.
droidcon is a global developer conference series and a network focusing on the best of Android. Find an overview of our 2015' events here [pdf].
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