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Alternative Android Market To House Banned Apps

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the where-are-the-fun-apps-are dept.

Android 114

sl4shd0rk writes "In contrast to the Apple's iron-fisted control over their App store, the Android Market is much more open. Google does, on occasion, remove apps it deems inappropriate, such as emulators, legally-questionable music services, tethering apps and one-click root apps. But if Koushik Dutta of CyanogenMod fame has his way, these heretic apps may have a home after all. Dutta plans an 'underground' Android Market complete with an approval process to weed out malicious applications; something Google doesn't do. Ideally, this will give Android users a more trustable source from which to get applications without having to resort to dictatorial software control."

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Alternative Slashdot to house FIRST POST (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799305)

I am so good at this.

What's he going to call it? (2)

plover (150551) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799327)

Cyandroid? Andia? Trandroid? TheDroidsYou'reLookingFor?

Re:What's he going to call it? (1)

Chemisor (97276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799761)

Droids-R-Us [wikia.com] , of course. Save your buckazoids!

Re:What's he going to call it? (3, Funny)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799763)

The most recent version of Android is nicknamed "Ice Cream Sandwhich."

In keeping with the theme, I propose that the next version be called "Creampie."

Re:What's he going to call it? (4, Informative)

ozmanjusri (601766) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800481)

I propose that the next version be called "Creampie."

It'll be called "Jelly Bean".
http://www.androidzene.com/the-key-features-of-android-5-0-jelly-bean/ [androidzene.com]

Re:What's he going to call it? (1)

thunderclap (972782) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801721)

KreamPie will be the one following that. (the names are alphabetical)

Re:What's he going to call it? (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802691)

I thought it was key-lime pie?

Re:What's he going to call it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38802757)

Personally, I'm hoping for Koeksister [wikipedia.org]

Re:What's he going to call it? (1)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802777)

Gief Yum Yum [greggs.co.uk]

Re:What's he going to call it? (2)

plover (150551) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800595)

Thank you for not posting a link to their new logo.

Re:What's he going to call it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800487)

How about TrojanAppsThatStealMyData.com?

Hemorrhoids... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800609)

because you'll never be very sure if the malware was indeed weeded out.

Re:What's he going to call it? - Camelot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800691)

I heard through the grape vine on IRC its going to be called camelot

Re:What's he going to call it? - Camelot (2)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801881)

I heard through the grape vine on IRC its going to be called camelot

Never, because any nerd (aka, Android user) will hear that and think "let's not go to Camelot, It is a silly place [youtube.com] ."

Re:What's he going to call it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38806493)

Maybe they could call it appbrain...oh wait [appbrain.com] ...

How is this any different than BlackMart? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799357)

https://www.facebook.com/BlackMart?sk=info [facebook.com]

Looks like BlackMart provides the same functionality and it already exists.

Re:How is this any different than BlackMart? (3, Insightful)

Cederic (9623) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799409)

Well, for a start, it's unlikely to require access to Facebook. That gives it a strong credibility boost from the outset.

Re:How is this any different than BlackMart? (2, Interesting)

errandum (2014454) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800147)

Besides you needing a facebook account, CyanogenMOD has a reputation, making it a trusted source. I would install their market, but I wouldn't be caught dead with that one in my phone.

trust is the key element (4, Interesting)

Cederic (9623) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799373)

I'd happily use this, maybe even pay for apps if they meet a need well enough.

But only if I can trust it. There has to be a general belief and continued lack of proof to the contrary that the apps can be trusted.

The Google controlled Market ironically lacks this element of trust - but Google have the track record of resolving any issues as soon as they spot them. So on balance, you tend to have a reasonable level of comfort, particularly if an app's been downloaded 5 million times.

However, I'm all for it. Lets get it up and running - after all, this is the very openness that drew me to Android ahead of its rivals.

Re:trust is the key element (4, Insightful)

wbr1 (2538558) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799567)

particularly if an app's been downloaded 5 million times.

Really.. that is not a good judgement. What if the app is a popular one, you decide to trust it, use it for 6 months, then get alerted to an update. You download the update, through the market, only to realize that your precious mission critical (to you) app, no is either ham-strung or personal info reporting malware. Basing an apps security off of it's popularity is not wise my friend. Hell, Melissa and ILOVEYOU got downloaded millions of times!

Re:trust is the key element (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799609)

You download the update, through the market, only to realize that your precious mission critical (to you) app, no is either ham-strung or personal info reporting malware. Basing an apps security off of it's popularity is not wise my friend. Hell, Melissa and ILOVEYOU got downloaded millions of times!

Hey...you leave Pandora out of this!

Re:trust is the key element (2)

errandum (2014454) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800179)

Well, it might be possible, but I don't think it'd be easy to hide a 5M downloads app with malware in it. The only real risk I see in all this is a compromised developer computer and passwords (for those than don't know, all apps need to be signed by yourself - that's not easy to achieve if you're not the person).

Either way, highly unlikely.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

plover (150551) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800639)

Either way, highly unlikely.

No. Either way, proven continually in the Chinese Android app marketplace. People are continually getting ripped off by apps that are stealing passwords, credit card data and other info. Apparently a high percentage of the "cracked" apps (those with copy protections or DRM restrictions removed) include an unhappy ending for the downloader. They may not get 5 million downloads, but I've read of Trojan horses with hundreds of thousands of victims. The stories have even been posted here on /.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

errandum (2014454) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802807)

You are talking about unofficial chinese app stores? Is that your point of comparison?

How many trojans ever got anywhere that far in the official market?

Re:trust is the key element (1)

macs4all (973270) | about 2 years ago | (#38803595)

You are talking about unofficial chinese app stores? Is that your point of comparison?

How many trojans ever got anywhere that far in the official market?

Not sure; but it's thousands of percent more than the ones that got anywhere in the Apple App Store.

Re:trust is the key element (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38804611)

You are talking about unofficial chinese app stores? Is that your point of comparison?

How many trojans ever got anywhere that far in the official market?

"Macs4all": Not sure; but it's thousands of percent more than the ones that got anywhere in the Apple App Store.

lol lol lol

Re:trust is the key element (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 2 years ago | (#38806413)

You are talking about unofficial chinese app stores? Is that your point of comparison?

In China, AOSP based Androids outnumber official Androids. There are few ways for AOSP Androids to get apps (SlideME, GetJar, AppsLib) and they have few apps compared to Google Market (which they can't get).

So instead, these people set up unofficial Chinese marketplaces because they aren't well served (can't get Market apps, other app stores are pretty useless to them) and they serve up all sorts of apps, including pirated ones.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802279)

But very easy to do if you are the person.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

errandum (2014454) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802833)

Well, if you own an application that is that popular you'd be screwing yourself over if you ever did that.

But betrayal by a trusted source is actually the worse kind of attack, since you never see it coming. I don't even know if Apple's app store would be able to help you there... Do they review every patch you make to the application or just the first submission?

Re:trust is the key element (2)

coinreturn (617535) | about 2 years ago | (#38804323)

Well, if you own an application that is that popular you'd be screwing yourself over if you ever did that.

But betrayal by a trusted source is actually the worse kind of attack, since you never see it coming. I don't even know if Apple's app store would be able to help you there... Do they review every patch you make to the application or just the first submission?

Each patch. Though my experience is that the first submission takes a lot longer than updates.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800377)

That's technically true, but there's a certain comfort level of being in a huge "pack" of users.

Also, cyanogenmod lets me revoke suspicious permissions (which I always do). It's actually kind of amazing how many unnecessary permissions there are in some of the most popular apps that, when revoked, don't effect the functionality at all.

Re:trust is the key element (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800875)

One of the things I like about the Fdroid market (in addition to housing only free software that I can get source code for), is that it houses multiple versions of software. This is important for the reason you suggest. If the thing suddenly goes crazy, I can downgrade.

Re:trust is the key element (3, Insightful)

thegarbz (1787294) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802661)

It pays to check the permissions of an app prior to download the first time, regardless of how many people use it.

Android will not auto-update an app or allow you to select the "update-all" option in the Market on an app where the permissions have changed. This has seen many apps instantly weed out the old bait and switch scam. Even if it's done by accident, one popular app from an Australian supermarket had an update and suddenly requested permission to the address book, contacts, make phone calls, etc. The app suddenly had 100 new 1 star reviews along the lines of "wtf permissions?"

Mind you this does not protect against against bullshit apps like Where's My Water? from Disney [android.com] . Now here's an incredibly popular game that for some reason requires permissions to intercept outgoing calls, WAP messages, and read my contact data, modify global system settings, and change my contact sync settings.

Ummm NO! I don't care how popular your game is. I don't care if this is accidental. This kind of bullshit should not be installed on a phone, and an app with these permissions when not needed should no get even remotely near a 4.5 star rating.

Re:trust is the key element (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799653)

Trust is baked into Android's permissions system. If you don't trust an app to use the permissions it requests wisely, don't install it.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

izomiac (815208) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799715)

And hope that it don't use a privilege escalation bug to do whatever it wants! The scary part about how quickly devices are rooted is how a malicious app could do the same, just for different purposes.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

macs4all (973270) | about 2 years ago | (#38803619)

Trust is baked into Android's permissions system. If you don't trust an app to use the permissions it requests wisely, don't install it.

And just HOW many normal, ordinary people (you know, the ones that outnumber us geeks 10,000:1) know that the LOLCats wallpaper they just downloaded shouldn't need access to their Contacts "So you can tell your friends about it!", hmmmm?

Re:trust is the key element (4, Funny)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799743)

I'd happily use this, maybe even pay for apps if they meet a need well enough.

Steady now. Don't be rash. 99c is a lot of money to an Android user.

Re:trust is the key element (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800855)

If .99c is no money to you you're free to send it my way.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802007)

If .99c is no money to you you're free to send it my way.

If only you had posted logged in. Maybe next time.

Re:trust is the key element (2)

Mordok-DestroyerOfWo (1000167) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800921)

And $500 is barely enough to tip a typical Apple user's caddy's chauffeur.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

visualight (468005) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800273)

I trusted Samsung and all I got was a locked bootloader :/

I look forward to alternatives.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

Cederic (9623) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802817)

Hmm. Posting from my Samsung phone with an jnlocked bootloader..

Re:trust is the key element (1)

visualight (468005) | about 2 years ago | (#38805613)

They were selling unlocked galaxy 10.1's, I bought one after opening it in the store and verifying the rumor...I enabled updates to get the new UI, not knowing that it had an extra step "...encrypting bootloader." Now it just sits on a shelf next to my Joe Samsung voodoo doll.

Re:trust is the key element (1)

Cederic (9623) | about 2 years ago | (#38806091)

Ouch, that is nasty. I installed generic ICS after unlocking so I'm out of the Samsung eco system now.

If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (2)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799451)

and if the reason is copyright infringement, then they'll lose their safe harbor protection by approving the apps :(. In light of the last few days of takedowns + jailtime, Brave, but foolish...

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799545)

Taking other people's IP is brave? How about creating your own fucking content instead of leaching it from others?

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (2)

EboMike (236714) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799645)

Going to an MMA gym and belittling the teachers' dick size is also brave, but foolish. I don't think the OP implied any sort of nobility or respectability in this endeavor.

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (3, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799685)

Writing an emulator isn't stealing anyone's IP. But the IP cartels will apply pressure and abused laws to persecute them anyway. Likewise, game rules cannot be copyrighted (art, and particular expression of the rules can) but that hasn't stopped purveyors of popular games from trying to strong-arm free variants offline.

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799745)

Exactly. I'm a bit confused to why Google has taken down all the emulators since they are used for legal purposes (see homebrew). Now of course the various ROM packs available via the market were questionable, but as for the emulators themselves, they could have given people a reason to buy a "game phone" like the Xperia play. Courts have proven time and time again that emulators are completely legal, so long as they are reverse engineered.

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (3, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799811)

Even without homebrew - I own many Playstation games. The emulators let me play them on another device. That's practically a textbook case for fair-use format-shifting. Luckily, since I use Android and not iPhone, I can just install those apps from their project homepage like I can any other app on my computer.

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (1)

AngryDeuce (2205124) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800349)

Ditto. The only SNES roms I play are the ones that I have physical carts for, to this day. I will admit, though, that I play them emulated 100% of the time, rather than digging out my console because I just can't give up the added functionality....save states, built in Game Genie/Pro-Action Replay functionality, graphical enhancements, etc.

I just finished Final Fantasy III (American version) again the other day. Such a great game...working on Chrono Trigger now (my physical copy has a dead battery backup, so sad, my 15 year old saves are all gone)...

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800775)

There is also the issue of abandonware. There are a lot of games that frankly are ridiculously expensive to find nowadays, often in the hundreds of dollars.

The companies that own the IP could have easily set up a useful digital service but they instead decide to sit on old games and do nothing with them. If they don't want my money, they obviously won't get it. But I'll still get the game.

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 2 years ago | (#38803497)

The companies that own the IP could have easily set up a useful digital service but they instead decide to sit on old games and do nothing with them

Sometimes. For games from the '80s and even the '90s, often no one actually knows who owns the copyright. Games written by a single person will be owned by that person - if he died, then the copyright will be owned by whoever received the residual of his estate. This person may not even be aware that they own the copyright on an old game. Something similar happens if a company goes bust - the receiver will own its assets and some company may buy all of the intellectual property without especially caring about the game (e.g. pay for the patents, get some copyrights that you don't care about). There will be a record somewhere, but if management has changed a couple of times since then no one in the company may actually be aware of exactly what they own unless they happen to refer to an old asset sheet...

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800317)

There are still a lot of emulators on the Android Market. I think Google had to remove Yongzh's account due to copyright infringement--Yongzh didn't publish complete source code for his emulators. http://androidcommunity.com/so-why-were-the-yongzhs-emulators-pulled-20110601/ [androidcommunity.com]

Non-infringing use must be substantial (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800401)

I'm a bit confused to why Google has taken down all the emulators since they are used for legal purposes (see homebrew).

I asked about this on Fedora's legal mailing list once, and let me paraphrase the answer I got [markmail.org] : The Betamax defense to contributory infringement of copyright requires a substantial non-infringing use. Two dozen homebrew games compared to a thousand infringing ROMs is not clearly substantial to the point where Red Hat would have an open-and-shut defense against Nintendo.

Re:Non-infringing use must be substantial (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801989)

What about people who bought the games(I still have 50+ cartridges) but can't bother to connect the ancient SNES to a TV to play on it? (Not to mention dead battery backups for games with save states)

Re:Non-infringing use must be substantial (2)

anonymov (1768712) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802473)

Here, get a load of this [nintendo.com] .

In short: downloading ROMs are illegal, because you must do backup copies yourself, you dirty thief; copiers are illegal, because you can upload copied ROMs, you dirty thief (how the fuck you're supposed to make legal backups without copiers is beyond me); emulators are illegal, because you use them to play illegal downloaded ROMs, you dirty thief; by pirating NES games you damage $15 bln. industry with tens of thousands jobs, you dirty thief; not available anymore != copyright expired, so you won't be playing such gems as Action 52 legally for another half century, you dirty thief.

All around pleasant people.

I wonder, can you go to individual authors asking for permission to distribute, like ZX Spectrum guys [worldofspectrum.org] do, or Nintendo has a say in it, so you might as well go and get fucked?

Retrode (1)

tepples (727027) | about 2 years ago | (#38804057)

copiers are illegal, because you can upload copied ROMs

That's like saying video capture devices are illegal, because you can upload copied TV shows, or CD-ROM drives with audio extraction are illegal, because you can upload copied songs. And don't say Atari v. JS&A, because the device in that case was advertised for making copies to distribute, not copies specifically authorized under 17 USC 117(a)(1). We learned from MGM v. Grokster that how you advertise matters. So I recommend buying a Retrode, format-shifting your Super NES carts, and not distributing the copies.

Re:Non-infringing use must be substantial (1)

petermgreen (876956) | about 2 years ago | (#38805165)

I wonder, can you go to individual authors asking for permission to distribute, like ZX Spectrum guys [worldofspectrum.org] do, or Nintendo has a say in it, so you might as well go and get fucked?

I don't know for sure but I would bet that for most games on their platform nintendo likely owns some rights to them either through explicit agreements or through the use of nintendo library code in the games (remember games in those days were built into a single big binary).

Re:Non-infringing use must be substantial (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38806625)

What about people who bought the games(I still have 50+ cartridges) but can't bother to connect the ancient SNES to a TV to play on it? (Not to mention dead battery backups for games with save states)

Who. The. Fuck. Cares.

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (2)

compro01 (777531) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801185)

Taken down all the emulators? News to me. Searching right now I see gameboy (original, colour, and advance), NES, SNES, Gamegear, Master System, ColecoVision, and Commodore emulators available.

The ones that got taken down were license violations. For example, SNESDroid was a port of SNES9x, without the copyright notice and being sold commercially, which the license prohibits.

Creating one's own content (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800429)

How about creating your own fucking content

First, the major app stores already ban "fucking content", which would be rated X.

Second, if I were to create my own content, how should I avoid the sort of accidental infringement that got George Harrison in trouble [wikipedia.org] ?

Third, if I were to create my own content, how should I respond to allegations of infringement on grounds of having copied things that the copyright statute explicitly excludes from protection, such as methods of operation (17 USC 102(b))?

Re:If they're banned, it's probably for a reason (1)

cynyr (703126) | about 2 years ago | (#38803611)

Koush had his tether app taken down down by a few carriers. Despite that those users may have been paying for a tethering plan, and the app wasn't violating the market/developer terms. Anyways, I assume that this will be mostly rooting apps, and tether apps, and the like.

See https://plus.google.com/u/0/103583939320326217147/posts/Kd39ccKPL68 [google.com] for the motivation.

Hopefully it's more reliable than... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799467)

..."ROM Manager"

What a POS.

I believe it already exists... (3, Informative)

wbr1 (2538558) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799529)

I don't know if they continue to host 'banned apps', but slideme.org [slideme.org] is an alternative marketplace that seems to have a lot of stuff. It is ostensibly for those in countries who are banned from the market or those who don't like the Google TOS.
I used it briefly as I could not get the market running on my new phone at first. It would not associate with my Google account on WiFi or data using any of the ordinary means. It was not until I logged into YouTube that I got the association working. Even the gMail app would not log in until then. Isn't that strange. You would think Google would have their shit together better than that, but I digress.
My brief experience with slideme.org lead me to think that many of the apps are older, or cracked and possibly mal-ware, security problem laden versions, but I don't have enough experience to qualify that judgement well.

Re:I believe it already exists... (2)

brentrad (1013501) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799621)

I second SlideME, it's a great place to get apps that Google kicked off their Market for one reason or another. All the console emulators are available there.

IMO you can fill all your (legitimate) Android app needs by having the following three app markets:
1) Google Market
2) Amazon App Store
3) SlideME marketplace

AppsLib and Soc.io Mall (3, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800441)

1) Google Market

How long until Google cease-and-desists the developer of ArcTools, the tool to "pirate" Android Market on Archos devices? And how long until Google cease-and-desists the provider of the Gapps package for CyanogenMod, just as Google cease-and-desisted Cyanogen himself [slashdot.org] when he used to provide it?

2) Amazon App Store 3) SlideME marketplace

Are AppsLib and Soc.io Mall any good?

Re:AppsLib and Soc.io Mall (1)

brentrad (1013501) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800571)

1) Google Market

How long until Google cease-and-desists the developer of ArcTools, the tool to "pirate" Android Market on Archos devices? And how long until Google cease-and-desists the provider of the Gapps package for CyanogenMod, just as Google cease-and-desisted Cyanogen himself [slashdot.org] when he used to provide it?

I have no idea, but frankly I don't blame Google for protecting access to its Google Market and Google stock apps. If Android tablets and smartphones don't meet certain fairly basic criteria, they don't get to use the Google Market and standard apps. In that case, they're free to use some alternate market, and there are plenty of them. Google has no obligation to support non-standard Android builds with the official Market app and official apps. It's not like it's very hard to use a different app market on Android, and there are plenty of alternatives to the stock Google apps.

2) Amazon App Store 3) SlideME marketplace

Are AppsLib and Soc.io Mall any good?

No idea, I've only ever used the app stores I mentioned above. But even if an Android app isn't in any app stores, you can still load apps from a direct web link.

Until 2011-10 there was no 4" tablet with Market (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800631)

If Android tablets and smartphones don't meet certain fairly basic criteria, they don't get to use the Google Market and standard apps.

The problem is that these criteria once included [dailywireless.org] having a GPS receiver and a cellular radio. Apple doesn't include these in the iPod touch, its 3.5" Wi-Fi tablet, yet it still allows the device to access the same App Store as the iPhone. There wasn't an Android-powered close substitute for the iPod touch to until the fourth quarter of 2011 when the Samsung Galaxy Player came out.

Re:AppsLib and Soc.io Mall (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about 2 years ago | (#38806337)

I have no idea, but frankly I don't blame Google for protecting access to its Google Market and Google stock apps. If Android tablets and smartphones don't meet certain fairly basic criteria, they don't get to use the Google Market and standard apps. In that case, they're free to use some alternate market, and there are plenty of them. Google has no obligation to support non-standard Android builds with the official Market app and official apps. It's not like it's very hard to use a different app market on Android, and there are plenty of alternatives to the stock Google apps.

Yeah. So why aren't Android developers using the alternative marketplaces also?

Both SlideME and Amazon have paltry numbers of apps compared to Google, and most developers don't make APKs available via their website (even free ones), they leave you a crappy QR code and leave it at that.

It becomes a Google problem because these devices are all marketed as "Android" which people believe have half a billion apps in it (or so), but then they get 'em and realize that all the cool apps their friends have they can't get. Then it's "Android sucks - they claim it's half a billion apps but all I see is 10,000".

So it's no wonder people pirate the marketplace. Or pirate the apps themselves.

Android without the Market is more or less just an app-less environment.

Re:I believe it already exists... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800727)

Most of the console emulators that are available there but not on the Marketplace are GPL or other-license violators. The ___oid emulators, for instance. The Marketplace still has emulators, like NES.emu, which are not copyright-infringing.

Re:I believe it already exists... (1)

brentrad (1013501) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800757)

Thanks for the clarification. Those were just the first emulators I started using on my Motorola Droid, so I continued using them when I got my Transformer tablet.

Re:I believe it already exists... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801215)

The only legit one I know of that they took down was Snes9x Ex (same guy as NES.emu), which is free, since Snes9x's license prohibits commercial redistribution. No one knows why Google did that :\

There were others Snes9x-based emulators that were taken down because they were charging; it's not GPL'd, releasing source isn't enough. It could be that Ex just got caught in the crossfire.

Re:I believe it already exists... (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801793)

2) Amazon App Store

Useless until I can download a free app without having to put in my credit card number.

Re:I believe it already exists... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#38804465)

4) SinfulAndroid, for when the demos don't cut the mustard, normally don't exist, or the first few comments on the market are probably shills.

GetJar, too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800633)

GetJar too, another Android market with wide range of software not approved for Google market. But GetJar might not be around too long since it has been copying Google Market apps without permission. I'm expecting the DOJ to kick their door down soon enough MegaUpload style.

Samsung Apps and Amazon Apps already vet the apps before publication. Vetting apps is not new.

If you haven't tried it, try Samsung App store to sell your app, I get more downloads from Sammy than from Google market. (about 10/day from Google, about 50/day from Samsung). If you're not on Google market, I'd recommend you try Samsung, and if all else fails Amazon.

I find Google Market tries to sell advertising to you, and search doesn't work to force you to advertise, you need the advertising to get your app seen.
Amazon tries to sell you hosting, at $99/year and plays you off against other commercial apps to get a discount and market their own store. I think over time if they succeed they'll just increase their margin, till all profit ends in their pockets.
Both Amazon and Google treat you as a source of money to be tapped. Neither tries to work for their sales margin. Samsung on the other hand tries to sell handsets, and works for their margin. Banner rotations, a decent search engine and marketing.

Re:GetJar, too (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802895)

It's easy enough to produce a basic app store - a web browser pointing at some apks is an "app store". It might not do updates or other stuff but it fulfills the basic requirement of providing a list of apps that people can install. Android has APIs however that an app store could use for package management so the next step up is to use them. Most of the rival app stores are simply thin wrappers around the package management apis that present some list of apps, know which ones you already have installed and then present the appropriate update / install / uninstall options.

Where getjar is making money is probably by allowing all the telcos to produce their own branded store fronts hosted by the getjar infrastructure.

Trustable (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38799585)

Barely a word. Next time, sl4shd0rk, next time...

Mostly an old concept (1)

EboMike (236714) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799597)

Sounds similar to those projects like Al Sutton's AndAppStore (now merged with soc.io), which have been around for almost as long as Android.

The only difference I see is the approval process, which will make it harder for Koush to explain that he wasn't aware of the nature of an app once a C&D flies in. And given that apps are typically banned because they infringe copyrights or other monetary interests of big corporations, I'd say that C&Ds are inevitable.

Advance counter-notification (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800493)

And given that apps are typically banned because they infringe copyrights or other monetary interests of big corporations, I'd say that C&Ds are inevitable.

For example, these cease-and-desists may take the form of notifications of claimed infringement under OCILLA, commonly called "DMCA takedown notices". But if each developer includes a use rationale explaining how the facts and/or law disagree with any past claims of infringement, wouldn't it be that much easier for an alternative market to help the developer draft an automatic counter-notification?

Good (1)

bobbutts (927504) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799719)

When the android market started banning apps based on carrier request it only increased demand for such a market. As the number of people using modified phones increases, the incentive to make something better than the shady file locker/forum distribution method will only increase. Megaupload and similar sites falling apart may help the momentum even more. Cyanogen/Koush are in the best position to launch a new product like this since they can roll out new apps cooked into the ROM and they are already the most well known, trusted, and user base.

risky (2)

Khashishi (775369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799769)

If it fails to gain popularity, then it might as well not exist.
On the other hand, if it becomes popular enough to attract endorsements from famous entertainers, it'll probably get shut down by the feds and he could get arrested.

Google only removed the emulators... (4, Informative)

JackAxe (689361) | more than 2 years ago | (#38799981)

That were breaking the license agreement of the code they based their app on; so SNesoid and Gensoid as an example. One can still download a ton of different emulators from Google's market; some are free, some cost a tid-bit.

Re:Google only removed the emulators... (1)

geekforhire (300937) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800871)

I believe that Koush started to kick the idea for this around after his Tether application was removed from the Android Market for Sprint users. It was eventually restored but he was not pleased that they were able to pressure Google into blocking it.

Where is my ICS you Cyanodorks?! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800521)

Where the fuck is Ice Cream Sandwich for my G2 that was suppose to be out "before the end of the year"?

Give it to me you dipshit dumbass programmer morons! You guys couldn't program your way out of an infinite loop.

So stupid have many little kiddie morons work on this shit. It's like music applications, they all suck horribly because the only people working on them are little kids with shit programming skills.

And will promptly be sued by the ent. industry. (1)

BlueCoder (223005) | more than 2 years ago | (#38800611)

It's a store. They will make money. They will make money selling apps that people with sue over.

Best way to get around this is to dump the money to an IP licensing company.

Create the store software. Licence it at a rate that will consume 90% but not all of a stores profits. Possibly in the beginning charging more than 100% since it's reasonable in the beginning for a startup business to be in debt. Have the store pay the company it's IP licensing fees. Being an expense the amount paid is not taxed. In the licensing company you pay income tax, possibly less if it's based in a tax haven country such as Ireland. The software is just everyday online store software so there is nothing sketchy about it. It's incredibly hard to determine market value for IP so you can basically charge whatever you like. Even smarter to have multiple companies for different software components and or change companies supplying the software semi regularly.

Then when the media companies sue you you can pay out the small change the company kept and go bankrupt. Then start up another corporation with another shill and sell them the software and consultation services. This way you keep the money. The shill gets a job manning the store and taking the fall when he gets sued. Get a cheap lawyer to drag the cases out for years so you don't have to go bankrupt and change domain names every 6 months.

Yet another alternative android app market ? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800675)

"these heretic apps may have a home after all." Hallo ?

http://francois.telematique.org/htm/android.htm lists some 30 alternative markets for all the countries where google doesn't work or for all the devices which have not paid for google market and hence do not carry the "market" software.

http://f-droid.org/ is definitely my favorite.
If it is far from the google market choice, the applications are of very good quality.

AppOke isn't bad either, and slideme was already mentionned, to name a few.

Special mention for GetJar, which I was using before my android phone for java stuff.

And this is different than Cydia ... how exactly? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38800999)

I mean, yes, I presume you don't have to jailbreak the device first, but seriously -- the only people who are going to want "banned" apps are the sort of people for whom jailbreaking is not a barrier at all.

From a strickly "market" point of view, I fail to see how this is anything but yet another ripoff of the Mac community's ideas. :)

Open Source Android Market (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801277)

I use FDroid http://f-droid.org.

Its an open source only android market. (The number of applications is pretty limited, but the apps that are of good quality for the most part, for instance there is an offline gps application, so I can use my GPS without requiring an expensive data plan, the application is called OsmAnd).

The best part is, it doesn't have push updates like the market app has...

Download Bridge software (0)

bridgeshop (2551494) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802009)

Bridge Shop offer Bridge Software, Bridge Playing Software, and Contract Bridge Software [bridgeshop.com.au] for players of card games such as Bridge, or Poker. We provide all software tools for playing online bridge games.

OT: Tethering? (1)

DerPflanz (525793) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802219)

I know I am wildly off-topic, but why is Google banning tethering apps and why is that an issue at all? Android has the WiFi hotspot by default, which enables any WiFi device to use the mobile device's internet connection.

Or am I missing something?

Re:OT: Tethering? (1)

InEnacWeTrust (1638615) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802487)

I know I am wildly off-topic, but why is Google banning tethering apps and why is that an issue at all? Android has the WiFi hotspot by default, which enables any WiFi device to use the mobile device's internet connection.

Or am I missing something?

Carriers are all to happy to remove features from the phones they sell only to sell you the features as an added option. Hence they're not happy when someone comes ang gives that feature for free.

Re:OT: Tethering? (1)

anonymov (1768712) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802533)

Caving in to carriers, obviously. There were stories about Verizon getting in trouble with FCC over this last summer, for example.

And that's why you don't buy devices without apps sideloading.

Re:OT: Tethering? (1)

blueg3 (192743) | about 2 years ago | (#38804787)

There are a fair number of tethering apps in the Android Market, actually. However, carriers have an option to filter out some apps -- generally, they're the ones that the carrier charges for (like tethering). Ostensibly, the built-in feature of the system (which is much better now than it used to be) checks with the carrier to ensure that the feature is enabled on the account.

Who needs another app store? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802689)

I use this great store that an unsolicited email told me about. It has all the pay apps for free on it and all I need to do is grant the phone root permissions! There are a few glitches with the store to sort out such as the occasional 3 hour calls made to premium lines in Burkina Faso but otherwise it's been working out great.

cydia? (2)

pak9rabid (1011935) | about 2 years ago | (#38805703)

So it's like Cydia with moderators?

Old news (1)

Venotar (233363) | about 2 years ago | (#38806609)

That's so 14 days ago [youtube.com]

What's Next? (1)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about 2 years ago | (#38807083)

To give users an alternative to Dutta's iron-fisted control of his Marketplace, someone else will develop an app store for malicious apps.

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