Google Seeking Android Developer Input in New Surveys

Android developers have previously given great feedback, so now Google is asking them to put their latest thoughts down in new surveys.

Developer feedback

Google wants to know what Android developers think about how the Android development process can continue to be improved, so the company has set up new online surveys to find out what's on their minds.

The 2013 midyear Android Developer Survey, which is available in several languages, is now open online for developers' comments and input, according to a July 9 post by Reto Meier, the Android developer relations tech lead, on the Android Developers Blog.

"Last year more than 5,000 of you shared your Android Development experiences and challenges with us, and your responses directly influenced our choices and priorities for building things like Android Studio, the new Google Play Publishing Console, and the Google Play services," wrote Meier. "We in the Android Developer Relations team are passionate about making Android app development a great experience, so we're once again asking all of you involved in developing Android apps—engineers, designers, product managers and distribution and support folks—to let us know what you think."

The survey takes about 15 to 20 minutes to complete and includes four sections for user input about engineering and writing code; design, including user experience and interaction and visual design; product management, including deciding what the app should do and which devices and platforms to support; and Google Play, including publishing, distribution, monetization, and support via Google Play, according to Google. The developer responses will be used to help Google "test our assumptions and form a better understanding of the challenges you face, your motivations and your priorities, so that we can create better tools and resources for you," according to the survey Website.

Developers can choose not to answer questions or survey sections that don't apply to their work.The developer survey is available in English, Japanese, Chinese (Simplified) and in Chinese (Traditional).

"Last year you told us you'd like a way to give us general written feedback, so to facilitate this while keeping the survey short and simple, we've included a link at the end of the survey that will let you send us as much direct feedback as you care to, completely anonymously," wrote Meier. "Of course, you can always send us your thoughts, questions, suggestions and complaints any time by posting to us (publicly or privately) on Google+ at +Android Developers or using the hash tag #AndroidDev."

Google has been busy recently producing tools and services aimed at encouraging and promoting Android apps development.

In June, Google created a new Mobile Backend Starter that allows developers to focus on their apps and customers rather than on back-end code details of their applications. The Backend Starter essentially automates the back end of apps development so developers can work on adding cool and useful features and innovative marketing. The Mobile Backend Starter deploys with one click and is a complete mobile back end that connects with the cloud.

In April, Google gave its Play store new capabilities for developers to showcase their apps to Android users. Under that program, app developers can now upload screen shots of their apps running on 7-inch and 10-inch tablets so consumers can see what those apps will look like on their similar devices, which Google and the developers hope will continue to spur even more sales of innovative and useful apps in the store. The update also reminds app developers to run through a previously released checklist to be sure that their apps will render properly on users' devices.

Earlier in April, Google revamped its Play store app for Android smartphones and tablets so that it features larger images that jump off the page to help users find the content they are seeking. The latest Play store app is available for devices running on Android 2.2 or above.

A huge portion of Google's revenue comes from ad revenues, so the ability of advertisers to get their ads in front of viewers' eyeballs is huge for the company.

Google Play, which was created in March 2012 to combine what until then were separate sites where Android lovers could buy their favorite apps, music and ebooks, has been a huge hit. Before Google Play, users had to shop through the individual Android Market, Google Music and Google e-Bookstore sites.

By September 2012, Google Play had served up more than 25 billion downloads to app- and game-hungry Android users, reaching a significant milestone in only six months.