Blapkmarket: Gone, For Now, But Not Forgotten

If you are unfamiliar, Jesusxxx has been maintaining a black market for pirated Android applications until recently, when he received an email from his host that he was being shut down. His blapkmarket provided a place where you could obtain free applications that would normally cost money in the Android Market. Although this type of behavior cannot be condoned, I’m sure if you knew about blapkmarket, you’ve used it. If you’re just now hearing about it, I’m sure you wished you had. I believe we’re all guilty.

Obviously, I recommend that you use the Android Market for its intended purpose as many developers and companies depend on their purchased applications for further development and support.  With that being said, Jesusxxx has brought to everyone’s attention some minor flaws in the Android Market as we know it.

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The first flaw is that is that when you purchase an app from the market you have a 24 hour grace period to make a decision to keep or return the app for a full refund. Many take issue with this fact since they might not actually be able to fully test the use and/or need for a particular application in such a short time frame. Some would perfer a week to truly get down to the nitty gritty with an application. You also only can return an application to the market for a refund once. So, if a different build or update to application rolls out and you decide to give it another shot and still don’t like the app, you can uninstall it but not get a refund. Maybe Jesusxxx was providing a place where we can continuously test applications and provide feedback without having to lose $1.99, or so, at a time.

Also, we regularly get help questions via Android Forums from our friends in other countries complaining of an application not appearing in their Android Market, or their market not functioning at all. Jesusxxx  provided a market for those to be able to enjoy the market and applications as we get to here in the states

So, I ask you, is Jesusxxx really a bad guy? Not that we support piracy by any means, just a question to get the pot stirring devils advocate if you will. Like I said before, does giving users the opportunity to continually test applications in order to further their development along with allowing access to applications to those in foreign countries outweigh the negativity of piracy and the blapkmarket?

EDITOR’S NOTE: Hey it’s Rob, just want to address some negativity in the comments. Phandroid has not, does not, and never will endorse piracy on any level. Anthony admits he is playing “devil’s advocate” and says the goal was to “get the pot stirring”. The comment about “we’re all guilty” needs to be read in context. If you’ve ever burned a CD from a friend – you’re just as guilty – yet that seems to be a much more “accepted” practice. When AndroidAndMe held a contest for Android Developers to create a Droid Torrent App it was praised and all these developers flocked to enter – the winner got a TON of buzz and press. Do you see the contradiction here?

THIS is why Anthony is saying we’re all guilty. Musicians, Android Developers and large companies ALL deserve compensation for their hard work and shouldn’t have their creations stolen. From Napster to Limewire to Piratebay and other torrents, if you’ve NEVER pirated anything you’re exempt and can flame away. You’re also one of 12 people on earth who also have internet access and/or a CD Burner. There is a reason we’re called “Phandroid” and the fuel that keeps this Mobile OS running is undoubtedly the developers – PLEASE don’t think this article was meant to sleight you. But at the same time, put in perspective that this particular form of piracy “hits home”, whereas you’ve likely crossed the same line somewhere else. And if you have, which is likely the vast majority of us… we’re all guilty. So yeah, I stand by Anthony’s article and ask that you take a deep breath, re-read it and understand that this wasn’t meant as a “free pass” for pirates and those who make pirating accessible.

[Via AndroidGuys]

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  • Yeath

    Yes that web site is wrong. Developers create software programs, those programs are the sole property of the developer, and the developers have the right to sell that software how they see fit.

    Could Google provide a better market experience? Sure. They could allow developers to specify the return policy on their applications. That would seem to solve a lot of issues. If you publish a game that can be completed in a week, then maybe you don’t want people refunding the purchase price outside of 24 hours.

    Also, developers don’t have to use the Android Market to sell their app. They can sell their app directly from other web sites, web sites that are accessible to Android users in more regions. Whatever flaws the Android Market may have is not an excuse to pirate the efforts of developers. That will only push developers away from Android and lessen the quality of apps available.

  • Casper Bang

    I don’t support piracy and I would not have used his site, but I absolutely can understand why some people did. Here in Denmark where I reside, where for many years we’ve had more cell phones than land lines, it’s just frustrating that we can still not officially purchase applications on the Android marked. Unless of course you root and use MarkedEnabler, which is a hack normal users can’t do. Very disappointing Google!

  • Don

    He’s a thief pure and simple. Maybe he should put that talent towards writing some apps instead of stealing other peoples hard work!

  • Pedro Rodriguez

    Yeah, the grace period needs to be longer for some apps. Not for games, because some people can beat a game in a day.

  • Swamp Fox

    It is very disappointing that google has not launched the market worldwide and very unfortunate for the hardworking developers that so many users think that it is okay to steal their software. None of the developers are becoming super successful. People think that they are making a lot of money when they see a paid app has big download numbers like 50,000 at .99 a pop over the course of a year, but what they do not realize is that most likely more than half of those downloads were returns, google takes 30% of the earnings and then another ~3% for google checkout transactions. So that $50,000 that the market user thinks the developer made is more likely in the $16,000 range… if the dev was lucky! …for a year of hard effort of constantly developing updates, bugfixes, and putting up with the terrible, rampant negativity in comments and emails from the average market user. Is it even worth it to the developer? Amazing how someone can spend a year writing an app and then some jerk will download, spend 10 seconds to click through, and NOT read the instructions, and then just give it one star and write ‘sucks’ as comment. UNREAL. What is wrong with people?

    The community needs to learn to embrace the people that are developing for the platform and support them and not see them as the enemy. Stealing their software just slows down the whole process as they have to eat too, and if they can’t make money by developing on Android, they will focus their efforts elsewhere.

  • dirble

    Are you honestly asking us if that website is wrong with a straight face because you aren’t really sure yourself, or are you just trying to stir up discussion? Because if it’s not the latter, it may be time for me to unsubscribe from phandroid. (Yes, I’m a developer)

  • http://www.nerdofsteel.com Rocco

    Yes, running a piracy site where you – or Jesusxxx in this case – provide people with stolen software makes you a bad person. What is more troubling however is how Phandroid is trying to make excuses for his behavior.

    As a developer this is the number one thing that annoys me about pirates. Not the fact that they steal, or that they pirate my work, I’m fine with that. In fact, whenever I see something I developed pirated on one of those sites I get a little happy inside. Nine times out of ten it means there is a demand for the product you created and instead of throwing a hissy fit like most developers, it is your job as the creator of the product to try to find ways to increase your sales instead of punishing the users that want to use your product so badly they refuse to pay the less then $2USD pricetag. If that means adding new features or releasing into new markets, then that is what you do.

    What annoys me about pirates is the same thing that annoys me about this post. No matter how you try to slice it, pirating is theft. You can’t make it all right because you thought of some hypothetical situation where it is beneficial. Theft is theft, own it.

    Pretending it is not theft is the equivalence of dressing a cat up in a kangaroo outfit and then sitting around like a douchebag trying to philosophies how that cat is really a kangaroo now. The cat is still a cat no matter how adorable that damn outfit looks on him. Don’t sit around and try to pretend what you’re doing is not stealing or you’re providing some great service. Be an adult and take responsibility for your pirating. Once you accomplish owning up to your piracy then try to touch base with the developer whos stuff you pirated and let them know what they can do to make their product more valuable to you so you feel the need to purchase their product instead of stealing it.

    This really isn’t rocket science people!

  • kingloud

    yes he is a bad guy.

    if developers need public beta testing they should compile ‘lite’ versions or make the first version free

  • http://android.mikedg.com Mike dg

    I second dirble’s comment. Count me out from reading Phandroid. This is the most idiotic comment an Android blog has made since googleandblog compared Android to the Iranian Green Movement.

    There is no legitimate reason for blapkmarket to have existed. Developers are free to choose how they want their apps to get get out. Most developers will provide demos. Others will determine that a 48 hour refund period is sufficient.

    Furthermore, the refund period for paid software on Android is unique. It’s pretty much unheard of. While bitching about a “short” return period, has anyone stopped to try and get a refund on an iPhone app? or PC software that has well documented issues? or a console video game with flat out broken online play? In all 3 cases I think you’ll have a very hard if not impossible time trying to get a refund from the point of sale.

    I refuse to upload even my free apps to most alternative markets or other regions. Why? I don’t have the time to wade through support requests not in my native language. There can be other costs associated with my applications that take into account it only being available in certain regions.

  • Rutherford_Atlas

    Yes, it’s absolutely wrong. But that doesn’t change the fact that piracy is often tolerated (to an extent) in markets in which certain flaws can be seen, as outlined in the article. I can see how some people have serious problems with the topic, especially in Dirble’s case, assuming that he is, in fact, a developer.

    However, I’ve come to expect this sort of taboo topic to come up in Phandroid, and I actually love it. It has the potential to facilitate legitimate discussion. I think some of you are taking this a bit too personally. Yes, it’s a large point of contention, and not only for Android users. But I don’t think you should condemn Phandroid for opening discussion on such a heated topic.

  • dirble

    It’s not the topic I have a problem with, it’s Phandroid’s defense of the practice. I could go on and on about why it’s wrong, but why should I /have/ to?

  • http://stefan.sarzio.de Stefan Sarzio

    Considering the prices one has to pay for really cool and helpful apps there are no excuses at all (*) for pirating apps.

    (*): as long as you live in a country that allows for apps to be bought

  • cool

    Are you kidding me to ask such a question? That providing a base for thieving $2 apps might be ok by your implications? Come on, that’s like stealing a cookie from a baby, it’s wrong and there is no way anyone with half a brain could say it was ok. There is no way the market, it’s applications or the developers will continue to exist if this type of behavior becomes acceptable to the norm. The 24 hours grace period for refunds is remarkable – there is no other software providers that subscribe to this and yet you want to say that a week would be better? Come on… These developers aren’t spoiled brats from MTV Cribs show, basking in multi-million $ homes and cars while crying about downloads! This is totally different.

    Fact of the matter is simple, if we don’t support the Mom & Pop operations we will be subjects to the mega corps and eventually submit to their will and pay 20x over for those same apps. Just my opinion… but it’s important for the little guy to survive and that is up to us. It is important for Android to survive and that is up to us.

    Support your local Android developer!
    lol

    :)

  • Nathan H.

    What Would Jesus Do?

  • Quiksand

    Too many of you are missing the point. Too many of you are thinking as a Dev. Too many of you are from areas with a Market. Too many of you THINK there is an alternative. Making most of you wrong for over-reacting. I am sure you going to give a million reasons why this is stealing or wrong so lets try this.
    Too many Devs. overcharge for there app. I dont care about the amount of work you are putting into the app, you made the choice to build the app. When I open an app and the first thing it does is crash or “force close” I just want to throw the damn phone across the room, sure I can refund right then and there but what if it is after an update? then what? are you as a dev going to get right on fixing it? today? tomorrow? abandon the a app (this is something that has happened to me and many others) so please dont say we dont abandon apps. Believe most of the devs will get the update when they get it out.. or blame it on my phone like my phone is any different than anyone elses phone.
    Also many of you fail to realize that the “Blapk Market” made available many free apps, not just paid apps and many of those apps were you so precious but waste of my time “lite” apps that helped promote your over priced crap.

    If you seriously want to take issue with “Blapk Market” take issue with Google current Market first. Solve the worldwide problem on select markets for the market.Solve the problem with how I have to find your app.

    Lets be real if your app was so well made and soooo great I would have bought it already. This way when you put an update out, I dont have to wait hours,days, or weeks to get my hands on the update. Look at it as FREE Promotion for your app. I have saved Hundreds! by using the Blapk Market! Why because too many devs want .99+ for an app that doesnt work or that goes south after an update or two. I have currently purchase about 60 apps from Market,most before Blapk and about 80% of those apps purchased before Blapk I no longer use(Lack of updates,they no longer work on my platform, or they just suck).

    Many of the Best apps on the Market are FREE!!!!! Why don’t you just make it free? Did it really cost you that much to make the app? Is your time more valuable than other Devs?

    Improve your apps, don’t move backwards. I don’t want a game I can beat in a week. I want a game that keeps me coming back for more, something that keeps me entertained for more than a few mins.Make your app useful for on the daily. That’s when you will get my money.

    Phandroid and Android Guys and who ever else wants to run with this story is right to do so. They are right to question b/c its been almost 2 years since the G1 dropped and I(we) want to know where the Quality is?From the Devs? From Google? From Android? Where is my Market?

    Dont like my opinion(I am sure you dont)? That’s just too bad because I have a right to it.Just like you have a right to hate it (or me for saying it)

  • lighthacker

    Discussion like this is very useful, and can lead to some potentially useful changes in the Android Market. When I read the comments of any product I take into consideration the tone as well as the specifics. It is no different than what you read on Newegg or Amazon.

    As for the piracy issue, it is a reality. I service client PCs every day and find hot copies of Windows XP, Microsoft Office, etc. I take the time to show them why they need the legal software, but never get in their face about it. I get at least 50% of them to buy the legal version, since I can show them they are using it every day. If they are not, I remove it (with their consent) and bring them back to the side of “Truth and Light” :-)

    If you cannot see the value in this discussion perhaps you should find another site (I have 8 bookmarked) that are less controversial (and less interesting).
    –lighthacker

  • Kurt

    No question the site deserves to be removed. Even if he was providing a service at no profit he was depriving others of compensation for the time they invested. It was and is not his or anyone’s place to make the determination to change those rules regardless of the benefit. By doing this he may have damaged developers who can’t continue to invest in developing apps for a still young mobile OS.

    As for the grace period, I can see why people would want more time and maybe it should be up to the developer, but so many apps offer trial versions and others are so situationally specific that it is difficult to offer an extended trial without creating a model where people take advantage of the system to use a program and return it every tim ethey need it.

  • testhase

    The problem with the official market.apk is that it isn’t available to me. E.g. several device manufacturers didn’t include it in their devices.
    So Google are you listening? I want to pay for apps! I really do! But I just can’t…
    Make the market.apk available on your website. What the heck I would even pay for that so you wouldn’t lose any of the licensing revenue you get from the device manufacturers that include it.

  • swehes

    I have an idea that could help developers. But I would need developers input for it. I know however that developers doesn’t need yet another market for them to upload their stuff to. However if anyone is interested in getting together to develop an alternative that can be used worldwide send me a message at android@swehes.com

  • Ripster07

    Great topic for discussion! Lame to chastize Phandroid for bringing up such a controversial issue…
    Developers complaining about Phandroid instead of focusing on a legitimate discussion point = epic fail.

  • BrianC

    “Does giving users the opportunity … outweigh the negativity of piracy…” Ignorant question. Yes, it outweighs it for the pirate, not for the developer.

    Come on Phandroid.

  • jamesjones

    I support the hard work of developers.
    I often laugh at some of the outrageous (in my opinion only) pricing of apps in the market, but i am not the one to decide a price point for an application. That is the responsibility of the developer alone. I can either chose to purchase the app at their price, or wait for more options. The 24 hr refund policy is amazingly awesome. It allows me to get a feel for an app that Youtube videos can not fully offer.

  • Zer0-9

    Piracy of $2k software (Adobe CS4) while still illegal is rather understandable. If I’m just trying to familiarize myself with software or provide support to an end user should it really cost me $2k. On the flip side a $2 app on a phone is simply not worth my time and hassle to pirate.

    On the subject of the market place being limited in certain areas of the world well… he should have devoted his time/talent to providing an actual marketplace like SlideMe so that all benefit legally is where this should have gone.

  • Brad

    Give me a break yes this site should be taken down!

    I’m an android software dev with an app for sale. I’ve of course gotten my share of free PC apps (no free android apps though), so I’m not going to call the kettle black. I know earlier versions of my app had been pirated. However, I’m not really upset about it since I’ve pirated in the past and I understand why people do it. It’s just part of doing business.

    Android market certainly is not a place to “get rich quick” yet, but that is probably also part of the return ability.

    Since nobody out there seems to want to share stats, I will. But I won’t say what my app is though.

    My app has been for sale for 10 months. I’ve made almost $16000 so far from it. My return ratio is 30% (30% of people who download it return it in the 24 hour period).

    That guy above who said that devs charge too much, or why don’t that make it free, etc. – look, have you ever bought a game on a dumb phone? Most apps/games on dumb phones are 8 to 9 dollars a pop! Compared to that android market prices are a good deal.

    Also, I’ve been able to upgrade my development equipment because of the income, getting a better computer, a real phone, etc, so help improve my program even further. Being able to make an income off an app has been a huge plus. I dont see why we should have to “give away” anything. If you want to make a program for free then write it yourself. But my belief is that you will get what you pay for. The world requires money, it’s a fact, not a “disease”. I need it to survive. I’m not being greedy, and over time I’ve adjusted my app’s price to match its new features and abilities. Remember too that most people will get updates for free. In fact I have over 4000 active installs currently and when I add a new feature those people get it for free. I think if you disagree with this system it’s either that you are already pretty poor (in which case why do you have a smartphone then!?! huh?) or that you have some pie-in-the-sky notion of free and open software. This has nothing to with the sofware, it’s that I need money to live, period, and this is one way of obtaining it. There isn’t anything “evil” about it.

    I do agree however that devs should try to polish up their apps so they dont crash all the time, etc. If you expect someone to pay for it then make sure it’s a solid app at least, and not frustrating to use.

    -B

  • asqwerth

    Speaking as someone from a market without paid apps, I became aware that such sites existed, but chose not to go down that road because I wanted to support developers and encourage the growth of the Android market. I’m taking a long-term view.

    Of course, that means I can’t get some apps I would like unless the developers also allow you to buy their apps from their own website or sites like Slideme. I’m not too happy about that, and can’t wait for paid apps to be allowed in, but I can live with it.

    Delayed gratification and all that, you know. :-)

  • dirble

    “Developers complaining about Phandroid instead of focusing on a legitimate discussion point = epic fail.”

    Commenters still not realizing that the complaining is directed at Phandroid’s support of the practice, not the bringing up of the discussion point = double dog epic fail.

  • Josh

    blapkmarket sucked, and I’m glad it’s down. One of the things that sets Smartphones apart are apps. the iPhone has a good ecosystem where a developer or company can expect to see pretty good returns on their investment, but Android has crap returns right now, making it far less attractive to developers and companies looking to make polished products. (Still better than Palm OTOH) Until there’s the possibility of one person in a garage making enough to support themselves for a year, (Even better would be the huge amount of money the iShoot guy made. Holy crap.) the Android market’s still going to be second best, which will make Android itself less successful.

    Maybe it allowed people in countries not serviced by the market to get stuff, but the damage it did totally outweighed that.

  • http://phandroid.com Talton “Phases” Pettigrew

    I re-read the post to see if it’s really that bad of Phandroid to publish but.. eh. Come on guys, he’s stirring discussion.
    No, piracy is NOT okay and that is Phandroid’s very official stance on it. We’ve always been very against it and have gone to extremes to keep our forums clean of links to places providing such.
    Aside from the “I think we’re all guilty” part (which we’re not), it seems alright. He clearly said use the market and he’s just playing devils advocate to get people talking.
    However – I will point this concern to Rob and let him decide whether to edit, pull, or leave the article. The last thing we want is for our readers to think we support piracy.

  • dirble

    Fair enough. And yeah, the ‘we’re all guilty’ part sent me through the roof.

  • G

    The first flaw…
    !
    Make
    the
    market
    work
    in
    other
    country’s!

  • wow

    So this is 2 android sites that seem to think that there’s a least a possibility that stealing a person’s IP is ok.

    Man, does this make the android community look bad.

  • Rob Jackson

    Hey it’s Rob J – PLEASE read the “EDITOR’S NOTE” I’ve attached to the bottom of the article. I think/hope it will clear up not only Phandroid’s stance on this matter but also Anthony’s intentions. Perhaps they could have been expressed in a more clear manner, so if you were confused/misled by his attempt to provoke debate, we hope this clears everything up.

  • Anthony

    @Brad

    Well said :). I’m glad to see that you’ve found some success in the market.

  • David

    Wow…is this for real? Even with the note at the bottom. Personally, I think you guys have been doing enough “pot stirring” lately…maybe you should let it settle a bit.

    But to answer your question, yes…if he’s stealing from developers, and helping others to steal from developers, he’s a bad guy. End of story.

  • BYU

    Backtracking much

  • Rob Jackson

    Big difference between “backtracking” and “clarifying”

  • Swamp Fox

    @Quiksand… you are clueless and very naive about how all of this works, man. If you can’t afford a $2 app to support the developer then that is your problem. Do you walk out on bar tabs because you think $3 is over priced for a beer?

    @cool, you have it totally right. The 24 hour return policy is UNHEARD of on software and it is amazing that people still want more.

    Google really needs to get their act together on the developing both the reach and features of the app. It is absolutely stupid that the developers can not have some way to contact the people that leave comments. It should not be a one way street either.

    For all who are interested, we have developed and currently testing a new method that all but stops piracy with very, very little impact on the legitimate user. Hopefully in a few weeks once we have collected some more data, this will be BIG news story for Phandroid.

    Software piracy is what will kill the Android platform. The developers need to be able to be successful and fully commit to the platform and depend on it for their livelihood if the OS is going to fly. Why don’t any of the nondevelopers understand that? Instead they would just rather complain that everything is overpriced, forcecloses, or is lame with no real feedback as to what phone they are running, the conditions, or why they feel the way they do… Android users may end up causing its own demise.

  • Swamp Fox

    @Rob, also agree with people on pot stirring… the rhetorical questions in some of these blog entries are ridiculous. There is just NO WAY that this can be justified. Android is going to quickly become an unfavorable place to develop for the little guys if you guys don’t use your power to squelch the anti-developer trend from the users that has been growing. If the smalls guys leave, then the big companies will either let it all die, or move in and rape everyone.

  • Brendan Murphy

    If they don’t want people pirating maybe paid apps should be available in canada. That is the only reason i used Blapk. I can get them from Blapk but i cannot get it from the android market. So i don’t really care. I can still get my apps no problem so it doesn’t matter. There are more then 1 repository he owns =D

  • s

    WAREZ WAREZ WAREZ!!! To be honest I hadn’t heard of jesusxxx’s site but I wish I had. I have so much stuff to pay for in life, I honestly can’t drop all this money on mobile phone apps. (Or pretty much any digital media =p. )

    Like look at that documents 2 go app; $30!!! It’s been out a while and it still has performance issues. No way would I plunk down $30 for a phone app. Luckily there’s a lot of unscrupulous ppl like me who uploaded the apk and I got it FOR FREE!!! (Although I HAVE purchased nesoid, snesoid, gensoid, and dxtop. But only because I want easy access to updates)

    Sorry to dev’s gettin ripped off but to be blunt I’m not you so I don’t care. Besides it happens all the time in business, gotta take some losses. Me personally, I love torrents and piratebay and all that good stuff. I never pay for mp3′s, or movies when I can help it. And I constantly stream pirated media on the internet. And I’m just one of millions.

    Hate to be the extreme @$$hole end of the spectrum, but that’s how it is. You have 2 change human nature to get people to NOT wanna d/l free software or buy stuff that ‘fell off a truck’

  • Z-Liberator

    A blackMartet for apps that is great! Why didnt somebody tell me about this? Is there another one?

  • Bavarian CaveMenche

    @Brendan Murphy You tell them Brendan that make it available for our Polar Bear neighbors or else!

  • WTFMoses

    @The overly sensitive Devs,

    A lot of “R U Serious?” posts here. #1 he never supports piracy or Blapk Market anywhere in the post. Where are you getting that from? He in fact does the opposite. Remember this? “Not that we support piracy by any means, just a question to get the pot stirring.(added the period) devils advocate if you will.”If you disagree with #1 then please show PROOF that he DID in fact show support. #2 Tell me when it became taboo to post an Android relevant topic on Phandroid? Judging by the response it was a very good topic to bring up. Why would you stop visiting a site that brings up topics that you have a strong opinion on? Dont say that your opinion is obviously right. Thats arrogant and ignorant. There are people who feel differently.(some of them made posts of their own. read them with an open mind)Thats the reason for posting topics like this. Stop attacking Phandroid and start arguing your point of view to the people you disagree with. They will respond with their arguments. Thats how this works. Honestly you devs sound like idiots. “Phandroid how could you!”= Pathetic….

  • bray424

    Hopefully Androidplayground.net is the next Android piracy site to be shut down.

  • 2FR35H

    @Z-Liberator

    Actually yes in a sense but its unlimited free apps for $10 a year I haven’t gave it a go but look it up google it.

  • tke

    @Rob

    I’m with you. Everybody wants a reason to throw a self-righteous stone. I’m sure none of the guys flaming phandroid for this article have ever even heard of a torrent ;) We are all pirates, but no one ever wants their own ship stolen.

  • quiksand

    @swampfox when I go to a bar and order a beer and that beer sucks then yes I am asking for my 2 or 3 bucks back. Also I wouldn’t ask for a beer that I knew sucked. Then if the beer is overpriced I am not buying it. That’s easy.

    As for not understanding how it all works. I understand that too many devs just want to leave the people who purchase there apps hanging. The same people you want to “support” you as a dev. I get that your time is money but guess what(seriously guess what I am about to say) so is mine and when I spend $ 2 for an app and I don’t get an update or it doesn’t work after an “improvment update” when do I get my money for my time? So you charge me $5 for an app that works and then you decide a couple weeks later.(after say you sold 1000 downloads that are not returned) you then quit the game. I no longer get updates for the app and the app no longer works because the phone recieves a software update. I am out five buck because of a dev? and that’s fair to the consumer? Give me a break. You seem to think everyone is loaded and can purchase every single app. Again id like to mention the best app I’ve owned are free apps. You seem to think your app and time is worth so much more than those devs?

    You don’t seem to get it my friend. Devs are taking advantage of the end user. You also forget that many of the apps devs go around making are pulling or pushing from something I can use for free and many cases I do. In that case you are just profitting from another companies success,you are stealing that user from using that website in which they lose that possible advertising (or any other form of revenue) from that website.

    Just sayin’ someone is always “stealing” from someone else.

  • Notahotshot

    Great article.

    For those who can’t afford a two dollar app, buy one less drink, one less cheeseburger, eat from the dollar menu just one day and you will be able to pay for the app.

    You want quality? You need to pay for it. You don’t think an app is worth paying for? Don’t use it. If you use it, it’s worth something.

    Devs have the right to make money for their work same as you. They spent the time and money to learn how to code. Then they took the time to develop the app. Why would they give it away?

    You learned to do your job. You spend your time and energy working. Should you give your work away for free?

    As for getting mad at Phandroid for asking a controversial question just stop and realize it is not in support of piracy. They were not defending piracy. They voiced the reasons , the arguments that people use to justify the behaviour.

    Based on what I have learned about this site, if someone were to try to post links to pirate apps/sites the post would be edited pretty damn quick.

    This article did what it intended, it got people talking about the problem.

  • Michael B

    Why the hell does everything think torrents are just for illegal stuff? I only torrent Fedora, and that’s legal…

    Regardless, the part “I’m sure if you knew about blapkmarket, you’ve used it. If you’re just now hearing about it, I’m sure you wished you had. I believe we’re all guilty.” contradicts the editor’s note. It implies that we’d all have used the service if we knew of it. Not a pirating service, but THE service that is the subject of this article.

  • J-B Themes

    A lot of you complaining including devs do miss the point that:
    1. The market return policy does suck, 4 hours is not necessarily enough time to try an app out. I do my best to reply to emails within a few hours, how many of you do that? Because I’ve emailed a few of you with questions and you took more than a day to respond. So if someone is using your app and cannot figure it out within 24 hours and you do not respond they either a) are stuck with it, or b) refund it. If they refund it, they can try one more time and then are stuck with it. Do you honestly think that screwing people in this manner (this is how a lot of users perceive it), help you sell more apps, or make people more cautious to spend just $1 to buy an app.
    2. There are a lot of users that are outside the markets that allow paid apps. So no matter what you do and how much you complain, there will ALWAYS be pirated apps floating around. There are going to be people who supply things to those who cannot get it. Get over it. If you try and take out one person, you will have 5 to replace him.
    3. Do you really thing no one downloads an app for free to decide whether to buy it or not? I would bet more than half the people that can buy an app will, if they like it, even after having obtained a pirated copy.

    Just my 2 cents.

  • http://www.androidappcritic.com/ AndroidAppCritic

    “So, I ask you, is Jesusxxx really a bad guy?” This is NOT what the definition of devil’s advocate is. By asking the question you are inferring that somehow there are two answers to the question “Is stealing right or wrong?”

    @Swamp Fox well said.

    And to those that keep pirating software, remember this. I have two really sweet apps that I will NOT EVER release for public consumption because I cannot stand the fact that 1) my app is pirate 2) Google does nothing about it (not that they can stop it but they could at least try) and 3) people expect the world for a freakin’ dollar. In the PC world I get to charge for version updates, i.e. version 1, version 2, version 3, etc. Somehow, people with mobile phones feel that they can spend a whole buck and expect me to develop for them for the rest of their lives.

    My app has been a solid 5-star app since November when I released it and the second even the slightest things goes wrong everyone is willing to forget all the hard work I’ve put into my app. By stealing or pirating my app it doesn’t make me want to develop more apps.

    So considering the success of my app in terms of what the community has said (by consistently rating it 5-stars with thousands of downloads), pirates have only made me not want to release my other apps. My friends and family get to benefit from it but not the world. I don’t make anything off my app when development time is factored in. The least people can do to show their appreciation is pony up the lousy buck to say thanks.

    Whatever issues there are with the Android Market, and they are many, does not give anyone an excuse to steal apps. Take it up with Google. Otherwise, you are just justifying thievery. jesus_xxx posts on his Twitter that people should help him out and defend him. That’s rich. Defend him? What should I say? It’s OK to steal? All I hear from pirates is justification. At least @s had the balls and decency to admit he is a thief. If you were doing the right thing by not paying for software you wouldn’t need to justify it. How come I NEVER feel the need to justify buying an app but pirates feel the need to justify stealing an app?

  • Pieter

    just to add my 2 cents.
    tony’s article came off a little harsh. but after re-reading those bits, it became clear what he was implying.
    THEN, bob cleared it up as well.
    yet there are still a bunch of pansies (especially the self righteous devs on here) complaining about the article.
    .
    “You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Jesus
    .
    i know very well everybody that use this site has stolen, or took part in the use of stolen music, software, etc. it is the same exact thing.

  • Matt

    Why are all of the users on here criticizing the developers who make the apps that make android a better place? If they don’t like the article, I’m inclined to agree with them. They work hard and they just want to make sure they get their due. I seriously find it hard to believe that people paying $70-100 a month for a smartphone plan are incapable for shelling out 1.99 for a good app.

    @Phandroid… as a long time reader, I find it strange and a little disheartening that Phandroid has been putting up multiple questionable articles as of late. Go back to bringing us the news with a dash of geek humor, please.

  • Matt

    Oh, and by the way, if anybody is interested, androidandme.com did a write up of this issue also. It’s a much better take on it, imo. http://androidandme.com/2010/02/news/blapkmarket-has-left-the-building-can-we-fix-the-problems-it-exposed/

  • grease_gadgets

    Wow!!!!! I read the article and most of the comments posted. I wasn’t going to post until I read AndroidAppCritic’s comment.

    @ AndroidAppCritic first and foremost I bought your Cachemate app and LOVE IT but I will not purchase anymore apps from you. And if I could get my money back for Cachemate I would because of your comments about me. I’m a Consumer and just like YOU, I expect the world for my HARD EARNED FREAKING DOLLAR.

    You said “people expect the world for a freakin’ dollar. In the PC world I get to charge for version updates, i.e. version 1, version 2, version 3, etc. Somehow, people with mobile phones feel that they can spend a whole buck and expect me to develop for them for the rest of their lives. My app has been a solid 5-star app since November when I released it and the second even the slightest things goes wrong everyone is willing to forget all the hard work I’ve put into my app.”

    If your N1 was experiencing slight problems wouldn’t you “forget” all Google’s hard work and want them to give you a N1 that works as you expect it should. How about if Android 2.5 was released in March(speaking hypothetically) wouldn’t you expect Google to release it as an UPDATE for the N1 since it was just released in January and if they didn’t I’m going to assume that you would simply “root” your N1 and apply the new OS on your own and not buy the NEW officially supported Android 2.5 device.

    YES!!!!! I have emailed Google on several occasions asking why are we given only 24 Hour testing period and only ONE refund per paid app no matter the version. But have you taken it up with Google that some of your potential customers have an issue with the Market, after all you’re a DEVELOPER for their OS. But I doubt that you have talked to them since they (Google) help you make money and the current model that they have in place is tilted in your (devs) and their favor.

    Have you talked to your “brother” developers? Many of them don’t even release demos or lite versions of their apps so we can test it (for more than 24 hours) and see if we would like to spend that freakin dollar. In the PC world most paid applications or significantly new version 30 DAY TRIALS before they require you to spend your hard earned dollar.

    I don’t advocate piracy but with an attitude like yours I can see why it exists. AND TO ALL OF THE ARTICLE FLAMERS, GET OFF YOUR HIGH HORSE!!!!! THE ONLY REASON YOUR UPSET IS BECAUSE YOUR “POCKET” IS BEING HIT!!!!! I AGREE WITH PIETER EVERYONE HERE HAS PIRATED SOMETHING. I HAVE!

    @ Anthony Perez and Bob – WONDERFUL article about a valid concern, no matter the media music, programs, movies, or applications.

  • Biffy

    Your idea of testing apps for a day or two, or a longer period if developers willed is conceptually good, but realistically it would just end up with a load of piracy.

    Saying that, everyone knows about appulous and installous for the iPhone, yet the Apple App Store seems to be thriving, though I suppose that’s due to the sheer number of unaware users.

  • http://ukstokes.com/blog Ben

    “So, I ask you, is Jesusxxx really a bad guy?” Errrr, hello??

    Look. This sort of site promotes and encourages piracy, which is not helpful to anybody and ethically wrong. Not only that, who is to say “Jesusxxx” is not modifying the apk’s and installing malware in all of them? People need to think more carefully before installing from ‘unknown sources’. You really don’t know whats going on to your phone if you install from one of these sites.

    Furthermore, not all of us are guilty … just because you do it Phandroid it doesn’t mean we all do.

  • grease_gadgets

    BTW How many of you who are quick to condemn Phandroid and this article called Level Up Studios a crooks for stealing HTC’s property (Beautifule Widgets) or Modaco a thief for putting HTC Sense onto the N1. I don’t beleive any of you have said that they should be shut down? After all they have taken someone else INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY and made money from it. Beautiful Widgets charged approx. $1.50 and Modaco receives money through ad revenue as well as subscriptions.

  • vman81

    I sympathize with the developers on this one, and I’ve stayed clear of sites like those..

    ..but if paid apps aren’t made available in Scandinavia soon (and I mean real soon), I don’t see it as depriving anyone of anything. It’s just so damn arbitrary. It’s not like online tv streaming where the licensing across markets is a hassle.

  • Brad

    @grease_gadgets get a life! PC apps are usually very high priced compared to an app for your phone. Get with it! There is no reason you need any 30 day return policy on a phone app. Google’s 24 hour return policy is already a new standard for the industry. You want to talk about whining and complaining by devs? You are doing the same thing. The system is not “tilted” in dev’s advantage. WE still have to come up with ideas of apps to create, WE have to write the app and make it work well, WE have to take 30% pay cut on the app, and WE have to pay taxes on that income. You sound like another whiny bastard that has some low wage job and blames everyone else for their situation. You want a better life? Make it yourself! Stop blaming everyone else.

  • grease_gadgets

    @ Brad – It’s amazing that you made the assumption that I’m a disgruntled low wage employee who blames my misfortunes on everyone else from what I wrote. I’m actually living my dream I’m a CW2 in the U.S. Army, in my 16th year of service. Google it then tell me if I have a low age job. BTW I’ve done 3 tours to Iraq, 1 tour in Bosnia and just got back from relief efforts in Haiti! What have you done for your country, lately? I don’t blame anyone for any misfortune that may happen in my life I just suck it up and drive on. I have a wonderful family and I LOVE my life.

    I stated an OPINION just like you did because I felt that AndroidAppsCritic didn’t appreciate his customers (current or potential) because of they ONLY spend a couple of dollars and then get upset if something went wrong with the app that they purchased. His statement “people expect the world for a freakin’ dollar.” just felt like HOW DARE THEY EXPECT SO MUCH FOR A DOLLAR. Did you read his comments then my comments? My first comment was directed at him. The only time I brought other devs in was when I said “Have you talked to your “brother” developers? Many of them don’t even release demos or lite versions of their apps so we can test it (for more than 24 hours) and see if we would like to spend that freakin dollar.” That was in response to what he said.

    Then I posed a hypothetical situation but instead of apps I used the FACT that he owns a Nexus 1 and asked how he would feel if an updated OS was released and Google required him to spend another $200-$300 dollars to enjoy it, like Apple does. Do you have an answer to the other question that I posed? Did you accuse Level Up studios of thievery (or call HTC the bad guy when they issued the C&D) or call Modaco a crook for taking the Desire ROM (HTC’s property) putting it on a N1 and then making it available to the public? Because they have done the same thing Blapmarket did, make money from other people’s or corporation’s intellectual property.

    As to the 24 hour testing period being a new standard. Just because it’s a new standard doesn’t mean it should be the standard and that there is no room for improvement. Look at the uproar brought on by the iPad and the imapct it’s had on ebook prices. Before it’s been released and because of the “power” of iTunes prices on most ebooks have gone up 50 – 60%. AndroidAppCritic said “Whatever issues there are with the Android Market, and they are many, does not give anyone an excuse to steal apps. Take it up with Google.” He is right any problems with the market DOES NOT JUSTIFY stealing but has he as a developer told Google that some changes need to be made to the market because in it’s current iteration it harbors and even promotes PIRACY. I may have over reached with the App Market being tilted comment but like you I was upset when I read a comment and posted that on emtotion.

    For the record I support the hard work that you and other developers have done and continue to do and have purchased many apps from the Market: CacheMate, LockBot Pro, all of Francois DESLANDES apps, Root Explorer, SETCPU (even though it’s available for free on xda), Beautiful Widgets, and GDE to name a few.

  • grease_gadgets

    **EDIT**

    I siad this “Then I posed a hypothetical situation but instead of apps I used the FACT that he owns a Nexus 1 and asked how he would feel if an updated OS was released and Google required him to spend another $200-$300 dollars to enjoy it, like Apple does.”

    What I meant to say was – Then I posed a hypothetical situation but instead of apps I used the FACT that he owns a Nexus 1 and asked WHAT WOULD HE DO if an updated OS was released and Google required him to spend another $200-$300 dollars to enjoy it, like Apple does.

  • s

    Look, more than half the market is flooded with terrible apps that don’t work. Or for example you get people like Zathki who wrote a $2 gameboy color app that didn’t work properly and is no longer supported. Yet that app’s still in the market for over a year and some ppl lose their ‘hard earned $2′. Or there’s the fact that lots of apps have inadequate pics/descriptions. And how about the people I see complaining in the market about not receiving refunds before 24 hrs was up? Or you get dev’s who make an app for free, and when they have enough downloads they release a crippling update and FORCE you to buy their app without any forewarning (that’s YOU polyglotz translator app!!!) Or you get updates that wreck your favorite applications, since half the time dev’s don’t describe updates in the market description. Nowadays I wait several days to look at market comments before updating anything. Now if I couldn’t back up my apps (in case of bad updates or a factory reset), that would screw me over and leave me 100% less likely to EVER spend a dime on an android app, regardless of WHO the dev was. Only reason to pay for an app is if its REALLY good and you want updates. But with all the cr@p in the market who can tell? There’s like 8 million themes and battery widgets and home replacements and tower defense games. How am I supposed to know if I spent my money wisely? Especially with some of the more feature rich apps that 24 hrs ISN’T ENOUGH TIME TO DEMO! I mean games, ok you can beat em quick sometimes but how about not charging for a game that takes an hour to beat? For a lot of people buying apps on their phone is a new and scary experience, half the people I run into with a g1 look at it as a sidekick type device and are NOT power users. This is a complex issue because yes, people who pirate have a lot of these ‘reasons’ for doing it. Me, I’m cheap, broke, and want those apps even if I can’t pay for em. So yea, I’M A THIEF, and freely admit I don’t wanna play by the rules, but how about the others out there who are simply frustrated with the oddball way the market operates and don’t care how much time a dev put into his/her app? They are gonna feel justified no matter what you say.

  • Swamp Fox

    GOOGLE ONLY ALLOWS 325 CHARACTERS IN THE APP DESCRIPTIONS… IT SUCKS. Other than not being able to contact people who have downloaded or even commented on your app, IT IS THE MOST FRUSTRATING THING. Sorry, @S, but if you can’t pay $1 or $2 for an app, you need to give up your $200 phone and $100 a month phone/data plan. I think a lot of these people are just kids on their parents phone plan and got the phone for christmas. Google needs to do do checkout giftcards like Itunes does!!!

  • http://www.androidappcritic.com/ AndroidAppCritic

    @grease_gadgets I wrote a HUGE response to your comments directed towards me but at the last second, I decided not to post them. I’m not interested in debating the details of why I am right and you are wrong. I will keep it as short as possible.

    I am one of the most dedicated developers you will find on the Market and answer each and every email I get from people (to date it’s over 2,200 emails). I put out update after update after update and still, people complain. My app is five stars for a reason yet I still get email asking if the one bad comment is true. Your dollar entitles you to nothing besides the one version you downloaded. There is no promise, nor am I required by Google’s terms, TO EVER provide an update. So please, stop expecting the world for “the whole dollar” you spent. Let’s not sit here and pretend that, no matter how hard you work for it, a dollar is a lot of money. I lose money–a lot of money in terms of time–developing CacheMate. I do it purely as a service to the community. The dollar I “charge” for CacheMate is not for me. For the record, I have donated EVERY PENNY of “profit” to autismspeaks.org. I have spent HUNDREDS of hours on developing CacheMate and still I get crap from people. This is NOT my job. I am a user like you. If you read the extensive Help file I wrote for CacheMate you’d see why I released the app to the public. So please. The next time you want to criticize, get your facts straight first. Between the way users act and Google doing everything in their power to hinder developers it’s a wonder apps even get updated at all.

  • wow
  • bryon13

    I remember the first guy on my block that had 2 VCR’s. he was a minor legend, because he could copy movies! or the first guy with a 2 tape boom-box. all of a sudden, we had a reason to buy blank tapes! now, my parents have a 2-disc DVD player/burner. they didn’t buy it from some seedy, black-market guy wearing 42 fake watches. they got it at Wal-Mart. how many people are using a computer a friend built them? you think that super cheap computer has an official copy of windows? what about DVR’s? I don’t want to make anyone think I’m in favor of piracy, but I would be willing to bet EVERYONE who is bashing piracy right now has, somewhere in their house, SOMETHING that was pirated. a VHS, a mixtape, a cd someone made them, an mp3, a movie bought from the seedy guy in front of the dollar store, heck, almost anything you buy at the flea market. I, for one, cannot afford to buy every movie I see, but if the movie is worth owning, I buy it. have I paid for every movie I have ever watched? have I paid for every song I listened to? no. how many of you have iMusic installed? have you deleted every song you’ve checked out with it within 24 hours? take a good look at yourself before you get on a soap-box about piracy.

  • bjtheone

    I think it really depends on the cost of the app. For $1.99 I don’t expect to much nor am I willing to spend much time investigating/researching before I buy. At that price point buy, try and decide works well as a model. I also do not expect to be entertained for weeks by a $2 app. For example, I have purchased a number of task managers before I found the one that worked best for me.

    Most of the games and many utilities have lite versions to allow try before you buy. That is actually one of the easy ways to gage how serious the developer is.

    OTOH, I did pirate and try out GPS apps as they were significantly more money and I needed more than 24 hours to test them.

    I still have more free or ad based apps than paid but I have no issues paying for the ones I want. I am delighted to support developers of apps like SetCPU, SUFBS, WeatherBug, ASTRO, SnapPhoto, World Attack or Jewellust.

  • http://www.androidappcritic.com/ AndroidAppCritic

    @bryon13 You are certainly correct. There are millions of people who pirate everyday, many without even knowing it. But believe it or not, I have paid for every single song I own. I’ve purchased some albums on record (yes, I know), tape and CD. Before throwing out my CDs I did rip them to MP3 which is completely within my rights to do as the owner. I don’t really own any movies but the two or three I do I’ve purchased. I pretty much own all the music I want but if I do need something I buy it on Amazon (very, very rarely though). Believe it or not, there are honest people in the world. It’s not that I’m so pious. It’s that I believe that people deserve to be paid their fair share for the work they do. I’m sure that I’m guilty of unknowingly being a pirate. The Internet is so vast that it’s difficult to know if I reading, listening or watching something that is copyright material. But I do my best not to intentionally pirate digital media. For the record, I do NOT have iMusic installed although I did download it to add it to CacheMate. If I need a song here and there I can just pay the buck on Amazon.

  • Orlando

    I worked for four months learning Android and making a game. I’m unemployed and put my app in the market with the expectancy of making some cash to survive. Has been four days since I put my app (which in my and other people’s opinions is a fun game) and I have sold only six copies, which is less than $8 for me!!! How can developers like myself survive in a tough market and then on top of that you have people like Jesusxxx pirating our hard work?? I’m so angry at these people that expect everything for free. They steal. And no, it’s not necessary for the android market to provide more than 24 hrs to sample the apps, for Gosh sakes most apps are a DOLLAR, you can even consider it a low scale tip for us, developers and let us keep it.

  • grrowl

    Do people like this Jesusxxx have brain in their heads? Is he aware that he is seriously harming the Android developer’s community? He’s not – as he or you might think – fighting against huge companies with billions of income but mostly against hobbyists and small firms.
    I mean: what’s the point in stealing 1-dollar-apps? That’s like stealing a baby its pacifier.
    Go away, Jesusxxx, leave our community and never come back.

  • The Rat

    I, for one, believe that the “Us Vs. Them” mentality running rampant in society now a days is getting sickening. Humanity as a whole is getting so wound up that it’s only a matter of time before WWIV starts….

    I will admit to occasional piracy, but the music that I keep on my computer, I buy. The games that I like, I buy. If what I pirate is worth the money, I whole-heartedly support the devs, but when every developer treats EVERYBODY like a pirate, it just drives the previously mentioned mentality even further home. When I buy a piece of software, and an update from the developer KILLS IT, I feel justified in a pirated copy, because it was paid for and the dev is the one who broke it.

    If the software is utter crap, on the other hand, the pirated copy is deleted, and I don’t look back.

    As for Pirate Bay and the like, there’s more than a few things you can download that are perfectly legal, like an album by an unkown band, just trying to get their name out, or a game by a new dev in the same situation. Services like this offer the user a double edged sword, you can use it for illegal purposes, or not. Ultimately, the choice is on the head of the user, not the person running the service.

    Just me adding to the wall of text, good luck with the arguements, and try to remember to breathe while reading.
    Tempers tend to flare when money is involved.

  • http://greatlifegolf.com/berkshire Matt

    The blapk Market was and is (its back), AWESOME. If you dont like it, dont use it. Its a great thing to have and its not hurting anyone. The people pirating your apps wouldnt have bought them anyway. Im not paying 20 bucks for an app to watch basketball games from my phone, why? cause I dont need or use it very often, but it is cool to show off to friends, so I have pirated it. Whatever.

  • Shajahan Shaharia

    i will admit i have used pirated software on my android in the past.. main reason being the cards i have are all maestro cards

    but my credit card has arrived and yes i have started purchasing apps and i like how the refund system works

  • Juan Ramos

    Hey I have read all your responses to this issue as you would say. Tell u what Blapk market does help Android market make money in a way. Like me for instance I have used the blapk market one thing is for sure once you have an app for Blapk market you truly have to go out of your way for the future updates. so once I’m tired of looking for an update I give in and actually buy the real app off of android market. so that way I have the constant updates as they come out. what blapk market helps is where its lets play with apps till you see fit to purchase. Look at it this way at least I haven’t rooted our phones for all the real free stuff, so be easy I can almost bet 99% of the people here have bought a pirated movie one time or another, but even thought you have the bootleg before the movie came out to video. you knowing that it was a great movie you may go out of your way and buy the original copy. so everyone should just get over it, people are doing far worse with there phone then jesusxxx has.. Props my brother and good luck with this and its out come

  • war371

    OK yes its illegal we all get that. What I am wondering is this. Was jesusxxx making money off this blapkmarket or was he just trying to help those of us who can’t afford the apps or like it was said maybe he wanted to give people more time to preview the apparently. I don’t know. But everyone who is condemning him needs to think have you all used limewire or maybe heard a CD your friend had and copied that disc for yourself. I don’t know but I know I have. And what about the countries where you can’t get the proper applications. Here is another question and be honest with yourselves. How many of you have ever gotten a ride from a friend and not offered to give them a bit of money for gas. Yeah we all have done it. So look at that. You are getting something for your benefit without paying for it. That in itself is a form of piracy.

  • Erik

    I for one, was unaware of blapkmarket specifically and only vaguely aware of non-market piracy sites in general. Had I known of its existence when it was active, I probably would have used it. That was before reading this lively debate. Morality aside, it is well worth the $1-$5 price of most apps to avoid the headaches associated with tracking down the current version on some obscure site. I believe that is the crux of the issue. Piracy will always be with us, and therefore those who lose money to it will forever be attempting to stop it. If a developer is concerned about lost revenue, then their best defence is to update and enrich their apps frequently enough to make it bothersome for would-be pirates to track down the software. I don’t expect my cheap purchase to remain current forever more. I just want it to stay relevant for a good 6 months to a year, anything longer is simply a pleasant bonus. It does seem that Google market needs to seperate the chaff and place an expiration date on any apps which have not seen updates in a while. It would also be nice to see developer responses to those reviews which cast an app in a negative light. Its quite disheartening to open up a 4+ star app and see the top 3 reviews at 2 stars or less with such informative postings as “sux”. Another issue with the market is its search engine. If I go to my computer to research apps, I expect to be able to better find what I want than on my hand held device. Instead, I am greated with a keyword search and no advanced options. Even when I run said search, the returns are significantly less than what my handheld displays. So yes, the develepors are being somewhat hobbled by the poorly designed market format. I personally have downloaded maybe 30-40 apps in a 5 month period. I always try the free versions first and decide from there whether or not to upgrade. I currently have all of 3 purchased apps on my phone and 4 apps which have been there for more than a few weeks. If its not worth upgrading, then its not worth keeping either. As others have stated, giftcards similar to the iTunes format would go a long ways towards increasing the appeal of the app market.
    Rambling aside, I write this posting because I feel that this discussion has swayed me towards making more frequent purchases in the market. I was unaware that most developers were small independants, nor did I realize exaclty how small the financial benefit was. Thank you for a most informative debate.

  • http://keyeslabs.com dadical

    This thread just won’t die! It’s a touchy subject. Devs are frustrated because Google doesn’t (yet) provide all of required the tools for them to market and maintain healthy apps. Of course we take theft personally! Our apps represent huge personal investment in time and effort. My paid apps have a piracy rate of 70% and higher. Two users “steal” my app for every one that buys it.

    Android users, on the other hand, are accustomed to free apps, since that’s how Google started things out. Also, the situation is exacerbated by the fact that many users CAN’T buy from the market. This is slowly improving as more markets come on line and as the Android market becomes balanced with more affluent and mainstream owners.

    As a dev I’m trying to strike the right balance. I don’t want to stop people from installing and testing my apps regardless of how they get them. I just want to strongly encourage them to buy them if they actually are using them (see here: bit.ly/9ZYrh7).

    The bottom line here is that the tension between devs and those who wish to use paid software without paying for it (regardless of their rationalization) could be dramatically reduced with the right set of tools provided by Google or others.

    Devs just need the ability to effectively turn pirates into patrons!

  • Justin

    Here is a little common sense from the broke consumer, who would be using your apps if you if you were even the least bit intelligent. Stop making CRAP! And when you do make something that you know everyone will want stop trying to pick the pockets of your fans who already pay a huge phone bill to corporate companies. Get the billion dollar corporation GOOGLE to pay you for your time and effort, you are the people selling their damn devices they should foot the bill and make everyone’s day. You can’t even tell me I’m wrong because I’m not.

  • Erik

    Re: Justin

    “You can’t even tell me I’m wrong because I’m not.”

    That statement effectively devalues any opinion you may have. If you aim to influence others rather than trolling, please provide some reasoning.

  • Alex

    That was the only way for me to load an application in my f***ng HTC Hero. In our land(Ukraine) we don’t have any F***ng Market at all… You say “He’s a thief pure and simple.” – probably but for us that was the only oportunity to get some aps for F***ng Android.

  • rghtb4theeyeblnks

    Maybe if the apps where all open sorce like the os. All the dev teams would not have to pay for help. Sounds like the dev teams for android need to make apps for the iphone and the cydia team needs to make apps for android. Until then I refuse to give anything other then a donation to an app maker. Ill be pirateing until someone gets the point. They are greedy, not starving.

  • Niclas

    Well. I do not support pirating, which is pretty much stealing a file taking money and credit for it. that’s pirating. as long as the person that bought a file just share it to others so they can give the program a try i’m fine with, as the companies are being to greedy nowadays. and about android apps in the market that you have to pay for, some of us are unable to get those apps due to google beeing dheads and not release a full android market for us. I would rather pay for a good app then download a file that someone else bought. but if i want a certain program for android which i only can get by paying i have no choice then to download the app as i’m aint able to buy the product in my country. so stop telling ppl they are asses for giving us the possibility google aint giving us. i think their should an app which is pretty much like android market so we in these countries that don’t have market also can buy the apps we want.. those who started this whole thing was google by not giving all the countries the full android market. so please complain at the source and not on those giving us the opportunity to use the paid apps. it’s all up to google if ppl still will have to download the wrong way

  • ZAC

    Hell yes I’ve used the blapkmarket! I could seriously care less about you sorry-ass developers, or the fact that “I’m stealing from you”.

    EVERYBODY I know that has android used the blapkmarket! Why? Because who the hell wants to pay for apps when you can get them for free!

    Thank you, Phandroid, for writing this article, and stirring up all the developers. They needed it.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GG-RWGb0jNI scoobythegambler

    the new black market seen here

  • http://www.frenchwomen.org French Women :

    everybody wants to get rich but not everybody wants to sweat to get rich _

  • Mike in Houston

    Here’s my take…. I bought an Evo from Sprint as soon as I was able to find one..Anyway, the VERY FIRST THING I did was to root my phone and get familiar with it. I LOVE this os..and I use the Android Market all the time…But not to buy apps, only to research and get opinions on apps that I’m going to dl for free.I have never paid for one, and I’m surely not the only one who can say this. Devs will never be able to get around the fact that there are people like me out here, but the thing to remember is that people like me (like US) represent a miniscule part of the total number of Android users. I still don’t consider the 200 or so apps on my phone”free”…to me, I think the monthly fees I pay to my provider are enough, and I take into consideration how much I for the handset itself. A advice to devs…write a GREAT app, then eithergive it away and get advertisers too pay you for including their banners (which users like me (us) would block anyway

  • Mike in Houston

    cont…..(sorry)…OR,devs, sell your app on the official market…if it’s good, you’ll make money off plenty of casual android users…But ALSO, keep track of and document how “popular” your app is on the black market (not talking about Jesus XXX’S market thing, never used it)..then wear that as not only a badge of pride, but use it as part of your resume in the job market or as more support for your other apps…For instance, I have no idea who wrote the original app/idea for the Swype version I’m using to write these posts,but I bet you they could write their own ticket in the job market….and I’m pretty sure no one ever PAID for Swype on Android. To me, this whole thing is part of what it means to be open-source, and it’s the reason I bought an Android. If you want to pay for lots of apps and music, movies and books, then go buy an iphone. Anyone else feel the same way?

  • http://www.moneybusinesstalk.com Emma Johnson

    well of course, everyone loves to get rich but not everyone would love to do hard work ‘;,

  • http://koowie.com Peter Shen

    Too bad. I like their site. But yea it is totally expected they would be shut down.
    Peter, Founder Koowie.com