Android Market for phones, with books and movies

Recently, we’ve been hard at work improving Android Market to give you new ways to find great applications and games, purchase books, and rent movies. Today, we’re releasing a new version of Android Market which makes all of these available on phones (Android 2.2 and higher).

In the U.S., you’ll be able to rent thousands of movies, starting at $1.99, right from Android Market on your phone. With the Videos app, available in Android Market, there’s no more waiting for downloads, syncing, or worrying about storage space. Simply sign into Android Market with your Google account, and you can rent movies from anywhere – the web, or your Android phone or tablet – and start watching instantly. You can also download movies to your device so they’re available for viewing when you don’t have an internet connection.

Also in the U.S., you can now purchase books from Android Market on your phone. Like movie rentals, books are linked to your Google account, so they’re instantly available across all of your devices – computer, phone, or tablet – without the need for wires or downloads.

You’ll be delighted to find we’ve overhauled Android Market to make it faster, easier, and more fun to discover great apps, movies, and books. We’ve created more space to feature some of the most interesting content of the week on the home page. We’ve added more top charts, with newer, more relevant items, and we’ve made it easy to swipe through these charts as you browse the store. We’ve also introduced new collections of great content, like staff picks and Editors’ Choice apps.


The new Android Market will be rolling out in the coming weeks to Android 2.2 and higher phones around the world. You don’t need to do anything – the update is automatic on supported phones. If you’re in the U.S., you’ll also be able to download the Videos app, rent movies, and buy books once you receive the new Android Market.

Google Search for tablets

As part of our effort to evolve the Google design and experience, we’ve improved the search experience on tablets. We’ve simplified the layout of search results pages and increased the size of page contents like text, buttons and other touch targets to make it faster and easier to browse and interact with search results in portrait or landscape view.

The search button located below the search box provides quick access to specific types of results like Images, Videos, Places, Shopping and more. Just tap to open the search menu and select an option to see results in one category.

For image results, we focused on improvements that enhance the viewing experience such as enlarged image previews, continuous scroll, and faster loading of image thumbnails.

This improved search experience is rolling out in the coming days to iPad and Android 3.1+ tablets across 36 languages. Give it a try by going to in your tablet’s browser.

Solar Permit AppEngine Examples

It was a milestone that took over 50 years, and at last solar panel manufacturers can produce their modules for less than $1/Watt. Now, the renewable energy community is faced with the dilemma that the permitting and interconnection costs, i.e. the paperwork, is a significant fraction of the cost of a rooftop installation. To deploy gigaWatts of solar energy in the United States these costs need to drop. In response, the Department of Energy has made permitting part of its Sun Shot Initiative and SolarTech has launched its Solar Permitting Challenge. And now Google is pleased to announce Solar Permitting Code Examples to make it faster for software developers to be productive using AppEngine.
A small team of Googlers (Alex Martelli, Arjun Satyapal, Clay Murphy, Luke Stone, Ross Koningstein and Dave Fork) pooled their 20% time to help out. We tried to make the task of building a web based permitting application easier by providing examples of essential tasks in AppEngine including login, creating new permit requests, uploading files, and gathering statistics. Two different versions, one in Python and one in Java, were created.
We were inspired to create this code example by the work that SolarTech has done to promote faster permitting through its Solar Permitting Challenge, and by the Solar ABCs efforts to produce a simple, uniform process for solar permitting. The user login screen for the Python code example appears below.
Navigant consulting estimates that there are 700 gigaWatts of solar power generation resource on rooftops in the United States. Overall, we believe that efforts to streamline the workflow connected with rooftop solar installations could reduce the costs of installations by 50 cents/Watt. Please help us help the industry make this a reality.