You Tell Us: How Would You Improve the Android Market?

fixed_toolsThe Android Market is nice, but it’s not perfect. There’s always room for improvement and everyone has their own opinion as to what would make things better. This brings up the question of the week: How would you improve the Android Market?

  • pjv

    Not much I would improve except for some basic stuff anyone can think of. But… in an ideal world… the Market app would be open source, part of the system, and would just be a front-end to several app providers. Oh and there would be no cut for Google.

  • Todd A.

    hyperlinks to websites/YouTube and/or screenshots, smaller cut to Google, more sophisticated searching (irony here !) — including all apps rated about 3 stars etc., and an actual website dedicated to displaying ALL of the apps on the Market, so you could browse them on a PC as well.

  • Scythe
  • Scythe
  • Scythe
  • Jinx

    Honestly, I would change the rating systems. Age of vote should be part of the rating, much like Digg or Reddit. People typically leave a rating and never re-rate an application — even if the bug that got the low rating is now fixed. Other then that, you should be able to sort by the following: most popular (based on installed count), new, most rated, best rating.

  • JDH

    I'd like to see a requirement of a screenshot, screencast or a demo of both free and paid apps. It's sort of annoying having to download all these apps to see if they're good or not. I'd also like so see more options for sorting…Not just by "Latest" or "Most Downloaded", but highest rated would be nice and so would "up and coming" (apps that may not have a ton of downloads overall, but have a high number of downloads per day). So far though, i think the Market is so much better than spending hours scouring 50 Palm or PocketPC sites to find a good app in a certain category.

  • Andy

    Definetly have to agree with better search, I mean come on this is Google. I also have to agree with the better rating system so I don't have to read through all the comments to figure out if it's a real rating or the first version just sucked. Maybe have a voting system for the comments, like, to determine the most helful comments.

  • JDH

    I think Google deserves a cut. First of all, Apple takes a MUCH bigger cut that Google does. Also, all these apps are hosted on Google's servers. Even though they have massive datacenters, the should be reimbursed for the bandwidth somehow. On top of that, Google is the one handling up-keep of the market (deleting malicious apps, making sure everything is running smoothly, etc).

  • mrbsnss

    They need to make it like like Itunes have a desktop software where you can download and buy from online than sync to your phone

  • pjv

    Ok ok. I was just brainstorming. Let Google have their cut. I admit they kind of deserve it.

  • Danielle

    Comments should be screened before they make it into the app's comment section. Every single app is flooded with comments from morons who can barely form a sentence, much less offer any courtesy to people who work hard to bring applications to the market. Far too many apps probably go unnoticed because the first five comments available say, "dis ap sux wish i could give no star" or "i dunno how 2 use it, don't dl this app". Completely useless information to those who want to get an idea of an app before they install it. As much of a good idea as it is to let anybody create and upload apps, it's unfortunately made for very slim pickings when it comes to things that are actually functioning and useful. I would hope they intend to create some sort of standards for which applications are allowed to be sold. There are applications that literally do nothing but are being offered for $.99 or even more.

  • mkamp

    – PayPal support (or anything on top of Google checkout which nobody uses)
    – Linkable apps (you can't post a link to an app in the market for ordinary browsers to open)
    – Paid and Lite Apps should be able to use the same code (and packagename)
    – Search (it should find twitdroid and twidroid, and newsrob as well as NewsRob)
    – recent comments/ratings/downloads should be weighted higher as ancient ones
    – maybe based on the version like in the Appstore
    – More categories (common News & Weather?)
    – to late, but it would have been nice when all developers were allowed to post paid apps and be the category winner, not only those living in the US/UK
    – Update all (It's annoying to go interactively through the process of updating 5 apps)
    – Active and timely support
    – Talk back to the commenters (It should be optional to post anonymously, but the default should be that the developer can contact the commenter)

    That's just from the top of my head.

  • Doom

    The biggest thing Market needs is a rolling top ~25 list for Apps and Games. Keep the lifetime top list and add a rolling one (where new apps can actually have a chance to get on there). It would use the last two weeks of download data at any given time. It's ridiculous that there's nothing like this on Market – it makes it nearly impossible for smaller apps to get recognized at this point. Nobody will dethrone ShopSavvy or Weather Channel, etc. without something like that.

  • schwiz

    would be nice to browse through apps on the pc like someone else mentioned. That way developers could link to the download straight through their website.

  • radio_babylon

    more categories. tagging. better search. the market is useless for browsing as it stands now.

  • joakim

    – Install of apps to SD Card. – Differentiation of Apps by content (application vs media) – Ability to uninstall only an app within the 24 hour trial period, as well as the uninstall and refund option. (sometimes I like the app, and want to keep the 'purchased' state, but need to remove it temporarily for space reasons) – Official Browse / search for apps via normal browser. (complete with full comment history) – Ability to find apps based on similar app ratings of other users. – Ability to create App lists to share with other people (think amazon lists)

  • freality

    I was thinking the same thing earlier. The market should be a user's interface to the applications available for Android. Users should be able to add alternate sources to the Market. Aside from that, filtering by language would be nice. And the ability to subscribe to a developer or application. There's applications I don't want to install today, but would like to quickly find when the situation arises.

  • jcrane

    Should be able to sort paid vs. free apps.

  • Abe

    Market should take care of sales tax, VAT, export issues. I believe the Apple AppStore does this. The Market puts small shops in impossible situation.

  • Thomas

    Just a note here jcrane. When in the market and selecting either "by popularity" or "by date" click the menu button and on the top right you have (change view) – this allows you either to view all by "paid" or " free". T

  • Thomas

    Excellent points Danielle, Further I feel that those who market "grouped" apps should have a sub section, in that if they place one app out and there are 5 that either follow it (as in the comic apps) or add ons (such as the themes apps), that when they post to the market place ( the end users) do not have to sort through the entire section of their products spread through out the market.. Example, if a comic comes out – lets just call it "Mortal Fool", all other "Mortal Fools" that come out get placed in the same sub folder. I also think that there could be a section for 'Platinum Market Winners' (for those apps that placed excellent in all areas (ratings, downloads, updates / bug fixes…) So the idea (as it has been put) of dethroning and app is NOT need, but more so, JOINING the ELITE is what is as important. T

  • jcrane

    thanks Thomas, good to know.

  • Tasneem S.

    Yes, I agree. We need a more sophisticated searching mechanism. Today, I have no way of searching through all of the apps on a desktop – I can only see the "Top Free" or "Top Paid", but have no way of knowing about all of the Android apps available. It is highly desirable to have a dedicated website to be able to browse all of the apps from the Android Market on a desktop PC and there should be ratings posted, based on the number of installs, reviews, etc.

  • Pete

    They should add screen shots of the application.

  • Thomas520

    Not a problem, I too had the same idea a while back and someone told me this little bit of info. T

  • Andy

    I also agree that the ranking and comments engine/system is flawed. I would like to be able to supply a screenshot next to my app description. It would also be nice to be able to contact application users in an efficient manner; providing the ability to assist users experiencing issues.

  • TareX

    Better filtering So when you check the "Top Apps", you can filter them to "Today – This Week – This Month – All Time This way recent killer apps can get noticed.

  • TareX

    …and youtube video links would be great.

  • James

    – Allow sorting of search results. – Additional sorts: recently updated apps, by number of installs, by rating. – More categories. – A one-line description of each app on the search results page.

  • Jim

    I think the usability of the Market would be improved TREMENDOUSLY by some sort of recommendation engine, to help you find the apps that you want. If each App page had a "Related Apps" that were determined by tagging… OR, if there was an Amazon-y "People who downloaded this app ALSO downloaded X, Y, and Z".

  • Deej

    I love those ideas. I have had similar thoughts as well. I think the rating system should be radio buttons, that have options and of course not limited too, for example, How long did you use it? and give options, How many bugs did you have did it foreclose ?> Was the UI simple, and easy to understand? yes or no would be the answers of course. Something on those lines, and of course then put in to some graph or something. if answers were not favorable, comments could be written that go to the developer only. This would weed out the morons, who write It didn't work for me and give it 1 star, or 1 star because they said they didn't know how to use it or don't get what it's for. Usually that's the case, when it states in the description it needs root, and of course they don't have root. or they are just idiots anyway. Also, some descriptions for some apps, don't really give us enough on how to use things, or tell us what it is. so better descriptions. Categories, for example, a tip calculator, or a to do list. which the developer has tagged for these categories. Then I see the list of ALL of what ever the type of app I'm looking for. Right now, I can do a search for something, and it doesn't always give me everything. Like the tag could be twitter, and every app that was tagged for twitter would come up and I could pick and choose what client I want by having them all in one spot. I mostly want the stupid rating system fixed, so we can get a better understanding you shouldn't be able to give it a 1 star because you don't like it. it should be on the app, just because you don't like it, doesn't mean it's not a bad app and someone else may need it and love it. I read down on all comments there are some intelligent people rating apps fairly, I go by those I also don't just download an app to download, I only download what I find will be useful for ME. I also don't usually report bugs in the comments I email them, because it could be just a one time thing, it doesn't mean I'm going to stop using the app.

  • Lionel

    3 things FLASH VIDEO CUT and PASTE

  • M. Taylan Baysefer

    besides everything; since android is an oss project, google needs to supply detailed information about the current customer base. including demographics… ofc not to general public but to use it as a leverage against the streamline software developers. to lure/attract them to develop software for android platform. current perception of the platform is "by nerds for the nerds" in fact, it might be partially true, and as a business model, none of the major developers invest 1cent without knowing the return, and without the major developers, android market can not be improved by naive -in a good meaning- hobby applications. ofc, i am a huge supporter of the hobby developers, they are the source of the innovation, and they keep pushing and pushing the limits, so they are the utmost important group whim contributes to the development. but matter in fact, customers needs to see a reliable brand if they want to purchase a software for their usage, personal or business related… when i compare market with other similar stuff, most of the offerings are experimental, and for fun. which can be interesting for a while but after that? it might sound confusing, forgive me, it is kinda late here and i have enough amount of the alcohol on my blood stream 🙂 final words: android market needs mainstream developers!

  • Mike

    maybe they can add categorized apps by country, android phones for sale to all countries,just think the word OPEN-SOURCE!

  • nitro

    this is a MAJOR MAJOR issue which will get most paid developers in trouble very soon

  • WilcoR

    Better sorting, better search (come on Google! its your ballpark for heavens sake!) better rating, more 'preview' info (picture's / movie?) automatic updates if not involves crippling software

  • Moscow

    Doesn't the Checkout site allow the developer to define tax percentages? That is how it works with non-Market Checkout transactions.

  • Really good and interesting stuff.. keep writing