Google+ Getting Slammed In the Android Market Over Lack of Invites


I like to consider myself a pretty easy going guy, always smiling, petting babies and kissing little dogs. Most people would describe me as laid back and are usually amazed at how almost nothing can really set me off. Well, all that changed with the Android Market and, for lack of better words, the Android challenged individuals who have no business rating apps in the first place.

Take these recent reviews on the brand new Google+ app. I can tell you first hand, the app is awesome. It’s got a few bugs here and there but that’s to be expected whenever a new app launches. Overall I would give it a solid 4 stars. So, why the 415 1-star reviews? While I can’t view all of the one star ratings and read all of their reviews, I was able to nab this screenshot here. Yup. These folks are giving the app a 1-star rating simply because they cannot receive an invite. To top it all off, they even have the nerve to provide their email addresses hoping Google, Vic Gundotra or some other benevolent soul will see their pitiful review and send them an invite. Not by a long shot.

I’ve had an Android device since the beginning and I can tell you this: Android will live and die by its Market. If we want to continue to see the OS succeed, we need to be responsible about how we rate the apps in the Android Market. I can’t even begin to tell you how many ridiculous reviews I’ve come across when browsing great apps in the Market.

If you were lucky enough to get into Google+ and have tried the app out, please go back into your Market and rate the app accordingly. Funny enough, I’m sure the majority of people who rated the app 1 star because they didn’t received an invite, wont even take the time to go back and change their rating upon receiving one. And that folks, is what really grinds my gears.

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. Just tested this, and it seems to work. So if anyone still needs invites, there’s a (probably temporary) hack!

    1. can’t use a different account. my real account is not invited, but the other one is… no way to change the account.

      1. Just log in to the invited account and then use that guide to invite your real account?

  2. screen grab is broken…can’t see it

      1. yep, thx.

        def agree tho. hate seeing this douches do this crap

      2. Invite me plz …. invitenme porfavor [email protected] GRACIAS

    1. Crap. I think I fixed it.

  3. One of the problems with Android growing at such a fast rate is that everyday people now have one. By everyday, I mean dumb. The inconsiderate masses, thinking with their self serving fast food mentality, crying out “give me, give me”. They are insatiable and they will leave bad reviews from their own lack of understanding.

    1. Unfortunately, they’ve infested the dev forums at XDA now too.

      1. You could see it decay gradually over the past 18 months. I went from using it almost daily to maybe once every 6 weeks. I’m just surprised at how demanding people are of the dev’s.

        1. Also, did you see what they did to HTCClay? He had a bible verse in his signature, and they removed it because some people were offended.

          1. Go read @cyanogen ‘s timeline on twitter. Amazing the kind of stuff you see show up. Most recently someone completely oblivious to how the CM process works demanding that Steve port CM7 to the dell streak (a device he doesn’t own) himself. Combining that with the crap that shows up in his release threads on XDA and I think it’s a miracle he can keep his composure.

          2. Wow. I was just reading the tweets he was replying to… I could not take that.

            Most of the people are not asking for a port, but they are whining or demanding. A lot of them ‘R evn ta!kin lik dis…!!.!?!>>!?’.


          3. Eeugh. I read them and just had to send a tweet thanking the team for their hard work. Some people have to be nice, right?

          4. Hmm, how nice of them. Not.

            I wonder if they would have done the same thing if it was a verse from the Koran…

          5. they wouldnt have realized it. thus they would not care…

    2. Agreed. Nothing annoys me more than comments along the lines of

      “Nova 2 lags all the time do not download. HTC Hero.”

      1. lolllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

      2. It’s especially bad now that the original droid is bumping up against its limits. 7 billion of those sold, and they had one of the longer runs as “top dog,” so half of them are convinced they still have one of the better phones out there. It’s sacrilege and costs you a star easily if it won’t run on the Droid, even if you specify in the description that it won’t.

        Google really needs to allow developers a way to specify specs/phone so instead of just saying “This doesn’t work on HTC phones” in the description, leading to 15000 “Does not work on the Hero! Total crap!” HTC phones either don’t see it, or you have to ok a second page along the lines of “The developer of Wii Controller has indicated this app doesn’t work correctly on your device, install anyway?” at which point you’re not allow to rate/comment.


      4. Or for the free Voodoo Sound app for the Galaxy S and Nexus S devices with a custom voodoo sound enabled kernel

        “This apps suckz! HTC Thunderbolt”


        “Doesn’t work at all. False description. Nexus S stock”

      5. Amen to this! made it hard to know which apps are actually good. I still look for app review on the internet much, which i shouldn’t have if the reviews are thoughtful

    3. And these people are exactly the same reason I do not like the idea of Google’s +1 program influencing search results. Do you really want to go to a restaurant that these people thought was cool? o.O

  4. good article. so true.

  5. Great Idea Chris. Just posted my rating/review.

  6. agreed 100% ..the devs work too hard developing things like google plus for us for free and of course these idiots arent happy with that. people like that r never satisfied

    1. they must be Republicans

  7. There’s a very good reason I would give it 1 star. I am in Singapore and the app is not available here. What rationale reason is there for the app not to be released globally? Oh and I am already on Google+

    1. Invite plz [email protected]

    2. If you could invite me I would greatly appreciate it! :)

      [email protected]

      1. Sorry folks no more invites

    3. off topic, but singapore is pretty great :D just my two cents.

      1. When were you here?

  8. Just added my full stars also.. bunch of scrubs they should be ashamed

  9. I’m going through an thumbing down any 1 star comments that are asking for invites or complaining about getting invites. I suggest others do the same, that’s spam and not properly rating the actual app. (I am leaving the 1 stars who have legitimate complaints, however)

    1. Yup, I started to do that myself. And I don’t even really plan on using G+. These people are just ridiculous.

      1. Count me in on this. That was the first thing I did when I saw those. Wow. These morons were (still are) pissing me off. And just as Chris said, they probably will not change those 1-star ratings, smdh. Loving G+ so far though.

    2. I actually noticed all the ridiculous people asking for invites on the day the app was released. At that time, most of them were giving 4 and 5 stars. I still hit the spam button on at least 30 of them.

    3. I hear that. Those people are getting annoying. Wait till someone releases a spam bot on the email addresses those people posted… I mean why download something you know you can’t use… it just goes back to that Nova 2 joke earlier haha… people make me sad.

  10. Chris, where are you on Google + . I tried to find/follow you (not creeping) and no look. I did find something called phandroid editors though.

    nvm, found ya.

  11. invite me plssss :’)
    [email protected]

  12. Guys, and Chris! While I do agree that it’s frustrating to see people do that, they really have no other recourse to be heard. If Google doesn’t like it then they should have a “real” beta like Swiftkey did. If someone has an invite, then they can go to a special invite only page to download the app. Otherwise it’s just Market spam by posting apps nobody can use. DOn’t blame the masses for Google being lazy on their approach to getting the beta out to people.

    WHen I couldn’t remove Amazon’s original MP3 app, and all that other bloatware before I rooted, giving those apps 1 star was my only recourse. It was my way of saying to others not to support the app till they stopped supporting locked in bloatware.

    And for those who are comparing this to the heat and bullshit devs are getting on XDA, give it a rest, these 1 star comments are nothing compared to the assholeness that our lovely devs receive from dbags on that site.

    1. The fact that you can’t remove an app is a function of the app and/or your phone, and therefore legit. You are reviewing the app based on its inherent functionality.

      Poorly reviewing an app for an invite-only service because you didn’t get an invite is just petty, and not a review of functionality.

      1. Not being able to use an app available for download = Poor functionality in my book.

        1. So what you’re saying is that apps should never require a pre-existing account, or it has poor functionality?

          1. No, I think that if they want to highly publicize a new service but only offer it to a few people, then they shouldn’t put it on the market yet. They should have a direct download site like Swiftkey did for their beta program. The (Swiftkey beta) word still got out and sites still wrote articles about it. I heard about it from one such article, joined the beta program, and have been using the private beta app for 3 months now. People can’t poorly review an app that they don’t have access to.

  13. I just spent about 5 minutes and jumped thru the ratings and marked ones that are listing e-mail addresses for invites as Spam. Maybe if others do this, it will boot those “reviews” off? Just a thought….

  14. Trolls, just wait. Google Music isn’t public either.

  15. I agree completely.
    Make sure you downvote these one star votes as unhelpful when you see them. 99% of the time it is idiots who just don’t know how to use the app (or bought the cheapest, lousiest android phone they could find and expect it to run everyting buttery smooth) and express their anger through one star reviews.
    1 star is the lowest you can give. The app has to be pretty damned horrible to deserve that. If Google+ gets one star, I wouldn’t know what to rate all the annoying spam apps in the market, except maybe some sort of actual physical punishment
    The problem is that way too many people think of ratings as being binary. Either five stars or one star. No middle ground.

  16. I think you meant kiss babies and pet dogs…. but i dont mind a slobbery dog kiss every once in a while.

  17. The one star ratings are almost always completely useless. Not on the app but the delivery (Google’s fault) or compat or licensing issues the developers have no control over. Self-entitled aspie rage.

    People seem to realize this, which makes it tough when you really do get a bad app, like one that charges you to play solitaire.

  18. Hear , hear!

  19. Spot on Chris, you make very valid points. There’s an awful lot of bottomfeeders in the scene these days unfortunately.

    By the way, i have sold shareware software before and getting unjustified negative feedback (constructive criticism is fine) has the potential to demotivate and potentially derail projects. Not something the size of google granted, but this trigger happy low rating is happening all over the market for equally stupid reasons.

    1. There’s an iOS game whose devs I happen to know… People giving it a 1* rating in iTunes because “the size is too big due to the crappy voice acting, 1* when you remove it”

      Nevermind that the voice acting is less than 1/8th of the download size; most of it is the upscaled art and hi-fi background music so it sounds good and looks good on iPads as well as iPods.

  20. I can invite if anyone needs

    1. got it.

  21. Anyone need an invite let me know

    1. bkos1786 <— this guy

    2. Can you send me an invite. [email protected]

    3. Would greatly appreciate an invite, Brian…. [email protected]

    4. [email protected]. i’d appreciate an invite! Thanks!

    5. id appreciate an invite…[email protected]

    6. got one, thanks!

    7. one over here would be appreciated, thanks

      etobare at gmail dot com

  22. they (google) must just have underestimated all the support they would get rolling this thing out. oh btw bkos1786 at gmail would like an invite

  23. I kinda wish you could see a users profile on the market. I’d have a much better evaluation of an app if I’ve seen a users profile who usually gives our 3’s, 4’s and 5’s and gives an app a 1 than seeing people just randomly put stars in there.

  24. Dead on Chris and I especially like the family guy reference from when Peter had his own news segment called grind my gears

  25. may I have an invite please
    [email protected]

  26. Yeah those people probably wont come back to change their rating … i don’t rate apps that i haven’t properly tested… still waiting for an invite so if anyone is generous, [email protected]

  27. Great article.
    It’s not even about the exclusivity of the said app, it’s about idiots.
    I’ve seen so many one-star reviews on themes (that clearly require the matching launcher).
    Or people not being helpful to devs, and stating ‘this shit sucks’.
    I think there ought to be a time period (like most functional forums) before you can post a comment and rate. We’ve all been the ‘new kid’. But really?

  28. I think the market should start factoring in the “weight” of each comment by its thumbs down/up for the rating average.

  29. i just added everyone i saw in the market who posted their email addy. hopefully that will help

  30. I rate this opinion piece and the comments with 1 star.

    Simple question: How can this OS “continue to succeed” without expanding?

    You say that it depends on the success of the market, so should the same group who had android “from the beginning” buy from the market only those Apps that are not free, even if they’re garbage, just so the market thrives?

    If you want to see the OS succeed, you must understand the pros and cons of success. You’re complaining about a negative consequence of growth in a quite literal market where demand is high. Until developers respond to the unfortunately impolite demands of the new users by providing better quality Apps at a faster rate — or whatever the demand is — this impolite and seemingly mannerless mass will exist and grow. Fortunately, the number and skill of developers will also grow. This is called a free market.

    Another question to comments: How long do I have to own an android device to not be dumb and looked down upon? 2 months? 1 year? More? Set an example for us dummies and members of the masses. Ripples make waves.


    1. the devs should respond to these impolite people the same way they would respond to an impolite person in real life , ignore them, or if they persist, punch em in the face. rating an app negatively like google+ because they werent ever told NO or PATIENCE as a child is one should respond positively to that no matter what kind of market it is.

  31. Some people are selling invites using the loophole =op

    Don’t hate. Learn to play the game!

  32. Seriously folks, you just can’t fix stupid.

    1. Ron White is correct. Well said. Stupid people; they make you laugh, but you can’t hit ’em with a shovel.

  33. I couldn’t even get the app. It says item requested was not found :S

  34. While I’m not about to give their apps a bad review, I can understand the frustration! One of the things that killed Wave was that it was invite only, this essentially crippled any use of the product… you need to have loads of friends on something like this just to make it worth using, then it needs to be good!
    ps if anyone has the time please invite me [email protected]
    pps if someone adds me I’ll add 5 more and suggest they do the same and so on :-)

  35. “Android will live and die by its Market”. Well then perhaps Google should also consider that before making an app publicly available before everyone can use it. While I agree that these ratings are annoying, what exactly do you expect? As I see it, they deserve the ratings because it is an app that those people are completely unable to use despite the fact that it is compatible with their device. So, I would say it’s justified.

    1. No. It’s totally unnecessary and irrelevant to the actual quality of the *app*, which you are supposed to be rating. To give it 1 star based on the availability of the service which has been openly announced as through INVITE ONLY, and then complain like a child if you don’t get an invite infuriates me. If you think this is appropriate, are you suggesting people start giving paid apps 1 star because they are not free? These people are obviously angry that they cannot have access to Google+, precisely BECAUSE they think it will be awesome, which is why they shouldn’t give it 1*, because it is totally against what they actually think of the app. If they’re gonna be babies and cry about not getting their candy, they shouldn’t be able to afford smart phones.

    2. Would you rate Facebook or Twitter with 1 star just because they disabled your account, for example, or you wouldn’t be able to acces that service due to some restrictions?

      What’s the app quality got to do with the service it provides?

      1. In this case the app and the service are closely intertwined. One without the other is useless and therefore fully deserved of a 1 star.

    3. I concur with your point. This app is, for all intents and purposes, completely useless to anyone that has not received a Google+ invite. The distinction between this “useless” app and one for, say, a proprietary item is that the item CAN be purchased at any time by the consumer. However, someone cannot (at this time) just sign up for Google+.

      Basically, the app is testament to the current exclusive club of those who got invites. It’s minor blowback from a system that will be corrected once the feature is open to all. People shouldn’t make a big deal about the app, but neither should bloggers make a big deal about those who are left out of the fun club.

  36. I can’t get the app on my Wildfire why WHY!!

    1. It’s only available on the US market, afaik.

  37. Dup post

  38. What a douchebag article…..are you really that anal? Rating an app one star is what some people decided to do, google put out an app that is useless without an invite, they had to expect to get slammed by people without invites….and just a warning if you think people putting their emails out in the open on public forums is inviting spam,…sending people that rated one star links to this article via email is begging to get listed on known spamming sites…..just sayin…

  39. what a pile of trash. Google wave, Google buzz and now Google+ all great concepts and probably all really well implemented. Google wave was an amazing app yet it didn’t take off because of googles limited invitations. If google+ takes off it will be in spite of this invitation system not because of it. Google app inventor was another us average android users where excluded from. The stupidity of having a social network with limited invitation only subscription is the most stupid thing Google have done yet.

    Then for a tube with a google+ account to lecture how we should rate an app that we cannot use should just go and jump in the nearest river. If google want to exclude us the wider android community from everything and give invites to blog writers for little more than advertising reasons then we should rate this app as it really is crap and unusable. How dare you tell others how they should rate applications.

    If google want good app reviews or really care about the OS then they should make the app and services available to everyone not the same select few everytime. Google promised an inclusion open OS for everyone yet Google+ shows that’s to be a pile of nonsense. If I wanted to part of that type of ecosystem I would have bought an iPhone. .

    1. Seriously? It’s barely in beta. Limited invitations, expanding gradually, are the only way to test something without having it explode and crash.

      1. No it’s not. You could have a private beta program so you wouldn’t have all these idiots downrating the app. If giving out selected invites is supposed to be clever marketing, well it is not so clever when the service only has value when everyone you know can use it.

  40. Chris, it’s a nice article and a good point. But you posted everyone’s email in a jpg image format, without asking permission from them. If you are so about doing the right thing, then you should block off their addresses. Even if they change their review on the market and remove the email, you posted their email address for eternity, without their permission (I did get invites that way, and I used a temporary email address – I changed the review, and gave the app 5 stars it deserves).

  41. Will be lowering the rating I had posted for the phandroid app in the marketplace since douchebags like chris chavez can write and post personal rants like this as if it were android news….go cry to your mommy chris!

    1. Boy… you are the very type of person this was posted because of. Grow up.

      1. Killa, he posted an editorial…and a poorly thought out rant of an editorial at that, his rant garnered many opinions, most of which are band wagon hoppers with little free thought of their own. ( yourself included)
        I understand his frustration and need to vent, however the forums would have been a much better place for this, not front page phandroid…..
        Now before you go trying to find a way to defend him and save face just remember, news…..does not equal editorial writing….if it did dear abby would be front page….good night

  42. I have G+ account but can’t install this app – “This item cannot be installed in your device’s country.”

    1. Search for the apk, it’s available.

  43. Google can put out great product, but they’re not so hot when it comes to dealing with the general public. So then, they dangle this new service out to the general public. Scores want in, but only a few get the nod. True to form, there’s no information as to when the beta might open up or what the criteria are for getting an invite. There’s no forum I know of where people can post their questions, and they’re typically not all that eager to respond within the context of a forum.

    So while I agree that the Google+ app is getting a raw deal in the market, what else would you expect with the review mechanism seemingly being the only venue to get Google’s attention?

  44. My widget receives a lot of one star comments like “it does not open”, s**t it’s a widget! not an app!

    Android market really needs a way to let the dev reply to comments.

  45. I don’t want to find out what Peter’s “surprise” is, I just thought of the Facebook episode of South Park with video chat roulette lol Hey, what’s up…crap, he’s taking out his P :D

  46. [HUMOR] Where are the hecklers!? Has no one yet tried to give a Google -1 (ala the fabled Facebook dislike) to this article because they don’t have a Google+ invite? C’mon people! We must band together in protest until we are all allowed into the the hallowed halls of Google+!

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