How Google's Failing the Android App Market

Illustration for article titled How Google's Failing the Android App Market

DVD Jon, the reverse engineer who decrypted DVDs for the masses and liberated iTunes with DoubleTwist, is worried about the Android Market. There's too much junk, he says, and Google needs to follow Apple's lead to clean it up.

That might seem like a surprising notion coming from someone famous (or infamous, depending on who you ask) for methodically removing bricks from some of the tech world's most fortified walled gardens, but in a post on his blog, Google's mismanagement of the Android Market, Jon contends that Google's simply doing too little to curate their app offerings.


The top ranks of the Multimedia section, he says by way of example, are bloated with illegal music downloading services and spam ringtone apps (ones that are making money through Google Ads, incidentally). All of these violate copyright and undermine the Android Market's legitimate media players like MOG and Rdio.

Jon also cites a study by Larva Labs study that found Apple has paid developers 50 times the amount of money Google has, noting that Android developers can only sell paid apps in 13 countries out of the 46 in which it's available. Google's doubly negligent, here: it's not taking care of its developers or the apps they create once they hit the Market.

Apple is widely (and often rightfully) criticized for its vague and censorial App Store approval process. But as the Android Market continues its explosive growth, Google will have to make some changes to ensure that its quality apps don't get lost amidst the junk. []


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So people don't extensively research the apps available for a given task before they choose to use an application based on the functionality they require, the interface they most appreciate, and the trustworthiness they need to see from any application that most likely accesses sensitive information? Jeez. I must enjoy making extra work for myself - I guess I should just install randomly offered unknown-quality apps and save myself the time.

Seriously though, while I know the Market won't collate all this for you just yet, I hear Google also provides a service that gathers information on your behalf - all you have to do is enter a few relevant words and it takes care of the rest.