Google has unveiled an online market for its Apps service, allowing users to browse, purchase and install third-party plug-ins for the Premier, Standard and Education editions of Google Apps.
Apps Marketplace users will be able to add the plug-ins to their accounts directly from the marketplace after agreeing to the vendor's terms of service, and will be granted access to the data components used by the plug-in.
The web-based service will allow vendors to offer plug-ins while still giving Google some control over the development and distribution. Vendors such as Apple and Salesforce use similar models, as does Google with the Android Market.
The company estimates that some 50 vendors are already working on offerings for the new service.
"The Google Apps Marketplace gives software vendors access to a rapidly growing Google Apps customer base of 25 million users from two million businesses and universities," said Google Apps partner lead Scott McMullan.
"By embracing open standards like OpenID and OAuth, and by giving software vendors freedom of choice for billing arrangement and hosting platform, Google makes it easy to build apps for the Google Apps Marketplace."
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