While we’ve been waiting for integrated 3G and carrier subsidies to bring the cost of the Archos 5 Android Internet Tablet down, if you’ve some developer skills and some time to kill there’s another way to get a cheap deal. Archos have announced a deal whereby developers can – eventually – get an Archos 5 for just €1; all they need to do is whip up an app for the 5-inch touchscreen MID.
What makes this slightly different from regular Android development is that the Archos 5 lacks certain hardware and software APIs, for instance vibration or Google Maps. That means that much of the software already in the Android Market won’t play nicely with the MID, so Archos have been distributing apps via their own AppsLib download store.
Presuming your application works, is reasonably useful (i.e. doesn’t just say “Hello World”) and is suitably validated, Archos will shoot out a discount voucher for €228. That’s valid for any Archos 5 Android Internet Tablet at the company’s official store, and should cover most of the purchase price of one of the entry-level 8GB models which should drop at the beginning of 2010. Submissions will be accepted up until the end of November; full details here.