Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Androlib

As the number of apps on the Android Market is growing, finding interesting apps is increasingly becoming harder. Developers have a very limited opportunity to promote their apps - a name, an icon and 325 characters are all there is to tell the user what the app is about. No screen-shots, no release notes, no FAQ, no back-channel to respond to user's comments. And worst of all, there is still no web interface which puts whatever little information there is on the market online and available to search engines.

However useful smart phones are supposed to be the speed, power and comfort of a full-size laptop or desktop computer are hard to beat when it comes to searching and browsing large amounts of data. The quality of the built-in search function in the Android market is a bit spotty to say the least - why not let people use real powertools like an Internet search engine to find android apps?

For a while there has been Cyrket to expose the content of the market online - presumably by reverse engineering the market's client-server protocol. Recently, Cyrket has gotten some competition in the form of AndroLib with a slicker, more polished appearance and some extras like the ability to upload screenshots.