The Android market is growing at a remarkable rate, if figures from MobileCrunch are to be believed. A Google spokesperson confirmed to the mobile blog that there are now approximately 30,000 free and paid apps available to Android devices.

Google said back in December that it had 16,000 apps available, so that's approximately a doubling in 3 months - a very healthy rate of growth for the platform. The latest indications of the ratio between free and paid is 39% paid vs. 61% free, according to third-party developer AndroLib.

What's not clear, though, is how many of those apps are available across all Android devices. Some apps aren't accessible to Android versions below 2.0, and as a result, the App Market is splintering a little as manufacturers seem reluctant to update phones running Android 1.5 or 1.6, like the HTC Hero, to the latest version - 2.1.

In January, Apple stated that it has over 140,000 apps available, so it's clear that the Android App Market, while still between four and five times smaller, is now just about on the same order of magnitude as the iPhone App Store. Things are getting interesting.