Abstract for: Anticipating Future of Android: Role of Quality Gate Keeping

Android is currently the fastest growing mobile platform. But is the growth sustainable? In a platform users and developers feed each other through a virtuous cycle of network effects. Initially, a small number of quality applications attract users. With user growth developers join in to reap benefits. Growth beyond a point activates balancing forces of questionable quality and results in slowdown and bust. To the gatekeepers, quality threshold is a handle to control the speed of growth. This paper builds a system dynamics model of Android platform where growth enabling forces and balancing forces are represented. It is calibrated with real life data. Policy experiments are carried out with different quality thresholds. These demonstrate that a loosely regulated ecosystem enables initial growth. However when users prefer quality to quantity, as applications are available in plenty, the ecosystem needs to be tightened up to ensure sustained growth.