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Rescuing the good ship “Market”

I hear this complaint every single day, typically more than twice. The Android Market is seriously flawed, and it’s drastic improvement will be critical for Android to survive. Android is winning in a number game right now. It’s the only one growing – because it’s available everywhere. That focus is only going to work for so long, and it’s high time Google throw some serious weight into making sure Android’s weak points are shored up for the year to come. Plain and simple – It’s time to rescue the good ship Market.

The Android Market from an administrative standpoint is perfect. App developers pay $25 for access to the ability to deliver content to a massive audience. A percentage of the sold apps goes to Google, and aside from some server side admins, the system basically runs itself. Sounds perfect, right? Practically no upkeep costs, and the users make you money. That’s basically every business owners wet dream. Then there’s those users, and their customers. There is all of a sudden a whole lot more of them then there were before. The users, or App Developers, started to have needs, and they started to want Google to address those needs. Then, app delivery started to fail at times that were not 9-5, and Google took way longer to respond then anyone wanted. It’s a huge mess, and this just scratches the suface.

Android Market Support Team

This is a Developer helper, not a customer one. I am talking about a 24/7/365 support team accessible BY PHONE that possess the technical knowledge to help devs with problems specifically related to the transaction process, delivery, and any backend issues regarding uploading or adjusting apps. This is not a “omg help my app fc’s ITS YOUR FAULT”. This is not application support – this is making sure the market itself is a well oiled machine.

Isolating the Carrier

Carriers are all about loading the “bloatwarez” on our new Android devices anyway. Remove the Carrier tab from the Market, and make the Carrier label it’s own button in your launcher, as though it were it’s own app. I’m not saying to make the apps inaccessible or anything, but to make the button separate, so the Market app is the same on every device. If the Carriers want to make their own app stores, or if they want to make non-removable apps – let them do it through this.

Constant Metrics

If there’s one thing Google loves is data, right? Why not share, guys? We should have access to weekly, monthly, and yearly downloads and refunds. The information should be available in an email, on their website, on news sources all over. Make sure the quality applications get noticed.

Better App Descriptions

The app descriptions we have right now are poor. Plain and simple. The description space isn’t great, and there is no room to describe what is in an update when it comes out. Our app descriptions should have image clips AND/OR video (they do own youtube, after all), there should be a tab for changelogs, and the same quality should be carried over onto their website, including the ability to download.

This is not a tall order. These are things that could be quickly implemented that could greatly enhance the state of the Android Market. What else would you like to see?