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Google plans digital newsstand platform on Android devices

Google will launch a digital newsstand to distribute newspapers and magazines on Android mobile devices.

Google will launch a digital newsstand to distribute newspapers and magazines on Android mobile devices.

Apple currently sells digital versions of publications via its iTunes store. A Google-run e-newsstand would allow media companies to distribute digital versions of publications on Android tablets and smartphones, reported the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

The WSJ said Google had approached publishers for support and said it would take a smaller percentage of application sales than Apple. It is uncertain when a service will be launched.

In a statement, Google said: "We consistently said we're talking with publishers about ways we can work together, including whether we can help them with technology for subscription services. We have nothing specific to announce at this time."

Google confirmed plans to launch a digital bookstore in May last year that will step up competition with Amazon and Apple.

Google negotiated with some of the world's largest publishers to sell electronic copies of their books hosted on Google's servers.

Google Editions is aimed at making electronic books available to any web-enabled device, including Amazon's Kindle reader, which is tied to Amazon's digital store.

After experiencing legal and technical problems, the UK launch of Google Editions has been delayed and is now expected later this year.

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