Latest Archos A5 Firmware Allows for Paid Apps in Android Market (Rooted Units Only)

One of the biggest gripes about the Android-based Archos 5 tablet is the hoops one must jump to install apps.  With no official Android Market support, crafty users are forced to hack their tablets or side-load apps. That’s not the easiest thing to do when there are nearly 50,000 apps out there.  A known workaround called Market4Archos allowed users to access free applications in the market.  Paid apps, however, were left in the dust.  Until a recent firmware update that is. 

I don’t know why, but suddenly I’m getting paid-for apps listed under Android Market after the update. Cool!

Users with firmware version 1.7.99 have been reporting that paid apps are showing up in the Android Market.  Be advised, you must still have a hacked Archos 5 to get to these applications.  The firmware doesn’t simply add the Android Market to the device.

Source: liliputing

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In addition to smartphones and mobile gadgets, Scott has a deep appreciation for film, music, and sunflower seeds. A husband and father, he likes spending down time riding his mountain bike or binge-watching TV. Scott has overseen the day-to-day activities of AndroidGuys since 2007.
  • Gray

    But how could you pay for these?

  • Jim

    Gah! The headline still isn't correct. Allow an Archos A5 owner to comment:
    There is a Google Marketplace application package (.apk) than can be installed on the Archos just like any other Android application found on the web. Originally, this only gave us access to the Free applications in the Google Marketplace. If you wanted the paid applications, you had to root your Archos and make it pretend to be a T-Mobile cellphone.

    However, the latest firmware update allows the Archos to access some Paid applications without rooting (once you've installed the Google Marketplace package). Granted, not ALL of the applications are available. For instance, I can buy NewsRob and CoPilot, but I still only have access to the free version of Jewelust (bugger).

    The Google Marketplace filters apps that are compatible with your device based on your Device Identification. The going theory is that Google may be tagging some applications to be "Tablet" compatible, and the latest firmware from Archos includes this identification. That is just a rumor.

    The point is that we no longer need to root the Archos. Update the firmware, install the Marketplace package, and go shopping!

    – Jim

  • Hi Jim, to view Paid apps in the Android market the device needs a "signature" that google recognise. Either Archos have "hacked", Google have provided one or some other thing is going on that lets us view paid apps.

    Either way, ROOT is NOT required for this and my guess is Google have yet to support tablets as if they did they would provide Google Apps in a ROM.

  • Jim

    Strange how we can't get an official word from either Google or Archos on this. My guess is that Google sees the coming flood of Android Tablets and decided to have a piece of the pie by adding limited support in the Google Marketplace. I notice that I only have access to the free versions of applications that lack functionality due to the Archos' lack of camera and buttons. Almost every purchasable application is a functional one. There must be some sort of 2-way conversation going on.

    Originally, the Archos tablet had nothing but a blank identification that we filled using the root hack. Now there is an ID in the latest firmware. However, I'm sure that Google and/or Archos wants to test things out with us over-eager hackers before releasing a firmware that includes part or all of the "Google Experience."

    – Jim

  • Yup, no rooting is needed. Just download and install Market4Archos.apk and now with the latest firmware even Paid Apps work as well.

  • Nathan Schwermann

    Bah! got my hopes up I thought someone found out how to root these pieces of crap.

  • Affirmative

  • Robert

    I also see some paid apps on my A5 after installing Market4Archos; however, the device seems to be afflicted with the common problem involving "copy protected" Market apps. Since this device doesn't normally have the Market installed, apparently Google has not certified this device/rom…so applications published with the copy protection option are not visible in the Market.

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