Today, Amazon officially opened its Android Appstore. For this Android user it is a welcome sight (or site if you will) because Google’s Android market is like a flea market of apps. You are pretty confident that something good is in there but there is just too much junk to wade through so you give up. Amazon aims to clear up some of the confusion, cut through the garbage and help deliver quality Android apps more quickly and efficiently.
Beginning tonight (March 22, 2011), the Appstore will be accessible online atamazon.com/appstore. Android owners will also be able to download a version of the store to their handset. The store will support hundreds of mobile operators and hardware manufacturers.
Amazon has been recruiting developers since at least January to convince them to get on board with the venture. Initially, users will have access to a catalog of 3,800 applications.
What is starting to happen is that companies are realizing that large numbers of apps aren’t really that impressive any more. In fact, it’s more confusing and frustrating for the user to try to find what they want from a source that can be trusted for quality. Amazon is looking for quality over quantity and apparently developers are responding. One main reason is that the less cluttered the market the more likely their app will be found.
Amazon will be doing the following to help drive sales of the apps including giving one away free each day and the ability to ‘test drive’ an app on the website.
- Amazon will offer one free app a day to help with promotion.
- Amazon will offer a feature called Test Drive, which will allow a customer to try an app out before they buy. The technology is using Amazon’s cloud services. Users will be able open and use the app from within their computer browser. The simulation will last for about 30 minutes at which point they’ll have to buy it.
- Amazon will drive recommendations based on a user’s purchase history. If they are someone who purchases cook books and high-end utensils, Amazon may recommend a recipe app.
- Amazon is also enabling one-click purchasing for anyone with a credit card on file.
Amazon will be setting the prices and those apps that are given away for free will be guaranteed 20% of their recommended price. It’s an interesting model to say the least and I am thrilled because, honestly, the Android Market is a train wreck.
Apple finds this whole thing interesting as well as they are suing Amazon over trademark infringement for the term ‘App Store’. Bloomberg reports
Apple Inc. (AAPL) sued Amazon.com Inc., saying the online retailer is using Apple’s “App Store” trademark to sell software applications for mobile devices.
Apple, in a March 18 complaint in federal court in northern California, accused Amazon.com of trademark infringement and unfair competition. The company asked for a judge’s order to prevent the company from using the “App Store” name and for unspecified damages.
“Amazon has begun improperly using Apple’s App Store mark in connection with Amazon’s mobile-software developer program,” Apple said in the complaint. Amazon also plans to use the name with a mobile-software download service, the complaint states.
Hey, it wouldn’t be the Internet without some kind of legal wrangling.
If you are an Android user what’s your take on Amazon’s new store? And while we’re at it let’s have a little fun. What would you call Amazon’s Android Appstore if Apple got its way regarding its claim to trademark infringement? My suggestion: the ‘Anything is Better Than the Android Market Store’. Catchy, huh?