Amazon is offering Android developers $50 of AWS (Amazon Web Services) credit if they submit an app to the Amazon Android app store.
Although the announcement refers to apps that actually make use of AWS, this does not seem to be a pre-condition:
September 7 – November 15: Android developers who submit an app that is approved to the Amazon Appstore for Android through October 15 will receive a $50 promotional code towards the use of AWS products and services
The move ties in with reports of Amazon developing its own Android-based tablet/Kindle. Exactly what Amazon will offer is still under wraps.
Amazon is an interesting contender in the mobile wars because it has its own instant ecosystem – millions of customers who are already signed up with accounts and stored credit card details. Add in Kindle eBooks, the MP3 store, and the Amazon Instant Video Store for streaming video, and it amounts to a comprehensive content offering that approaches that of Apple.
The AWS element is also significant, and in this respect Amazon is ahead of Apple. Of course there is nothing to stop you using AWS with apps for iOS or other platforms, though there is synergy when it comes to payments.
The relationship with Google is interesting, in that Google controls Android but Amazon is not hooking into Google services or the official Android Marketplace. Amazon is showing no sign of developing its own search engine though, so Google will still get some benefit if Amazon devices are popular, provided Google remains the default for search.