Google to open enterprise app store in March

Google is planning to open an app store selling business software, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The company currently operates what it calls a solutions marketplace for its 20 million-odd Google Apps users, directing users to suppliers of add-on software and tools, and also offers an Android Marketplace for users of its cellphones. But it does not sell the enterprise apps directly.

A business-based app store could bolster the company’s credentials in the enterprise arena. A source told the New York Times that the aim was to provide better integration with the company’s partners.

The store will sell third party apps such as security products or inventory management, according to the Wall Street Journal, and could open as early as next month. Developers would share revenues with Google in much the same way as Apple developers.

Microsoft won’t much like the move, which could loosen its tight grip on the office productivity software market.